If you’re looking for evidence that the best scary movies are set in seriously great houses, then watch the 1992 suspense thriller The Hand That Rocks the Cradle again. The movie was filmed almost entirely on location at this gorgeous old home in Tacoma, Washington.
The house was built in 1891 and is bigger than it looks with over 6,000 square feet.
When Rebecca de Mornay lost the role of Tinkerbell in Hook to Julia Roberts, she took this one instead. I’d say that was a career blessing in disguise. She certainly made an impression in her role as evil disguised as a nanny.
I always think it’s funny that Claire (played by Annabella Sciorra) hires Peyton as their live-in nanny because she’s going to build a greenhouse in the yard for her plants. As if building a greenhouse in your yard is a full-time job. Is she working on it at night, too? 😉
Oh, well. Suspension of disbelief and all that.
I like this shot at night from the living room that shows the dramatic staircase and the doorway into the dining room:
The kitchen is warm and homey with the checkerboard floors, glass-front cabinets, open shelving, and worn countertops:
Dad Michael (Matt McCoy) and adorable daughter Emma in the upstairs bathroom:
Emma was played by Madeline Zima, who is all grown up now. She was 6 when the movie was made, and is 25 today. The Hand That Rocks the Cradle was her first film, but she spent 6 years playing Grace in “The Nanny.”
The master bedroom has an entire wall of windows:
Baby Joey was played by triplets, two of whom were actually girls. His nursery was sparsely furnished but had a brick fireplace and some yellow accents here and there:
When Claire gets home from the hospital after her asthma attack, she’s surprised to find that Peyton has redecorated the nursery. Now it’s blue instead of yellow, and there’s a turtle border around the room:
The infamous greenhouse, where Marlene (played by Julianne Moore) was killed:
The homeowners kept the greenhouse that was built for the movie. Here’s what it looks like today:
The front of the house in the movie:
In the movie:
Same angle today:
They painted it yellow, but otherwise it looks very much the same as it did in the movie more than 20 years ago.
Apparently this is a popular stop on area tours. Everyone wants to see the “Hand That Rocks the Cradle” house. And who could blame them? I’d want to see it, too, wouldn’t you?