Today we’re taking a “tour” of the retro-fabulous apartment featured in the 1987 hit film Three Men and a Baby. Somehow this one dwelling manages to pack in a multitude of 1980s interior design styles, as the rooms showcase everything from Memphis-Milano finds and neon arcade decor to glass block and eclectic architectural pieces. And for everyone who thinks this Manhattan apartment was haunted due to a tragic accident that occurred there, here’s some news: the on-screen “ghost” behind the curtain was actually a cardboard cutout of Ted Danson, and the “apartment” scenes were actually filmed on a sound stage in Toronto. Ready for a closer look?…
Wait a second! That’s not Ted Danson, Steve Guttenberg or Tom Selleck. No, it’s Cynthia Harris, who plays landlady Mrs. Hathaway. She’s standing in the apartment’s amazing entryway, which features plenty of glass block, as well as a peek at the foyer mural (behind her), created by Steve Guttenberg’s character, cartoonist Michael Kellam. Let’s start our apartment tour…
The Living Room
Hi, Tom Selleck! Seriously, there are no words for how this handsome man can rock a plaid shirt, suspenders, a bowtie and sunglasses. Add an ’80s modern painting behind him, and you have the perfect movie still. The living area of the apartment is more eclectic than modern, as traditional pieces find their way into the mix. Yet there are true 1980s statement items, like the abstract-patterned couch, shown below:
Natural light reigns in the greenhouse-style kitchen, which is filled with plants and other bright accents. Butcher block countertops and a paper towel holder in red (see it behind Ted Danson above?!) are signature ’80s statements. Can you spot the 9093 Kettle in the image below? This iconic piece was designed by Michael Graves for Alessi and introduced in 1985:
I wouldn’t mind those dishes, either. Now I’m reconsidering a wooden drying rack for my kitchen…
The Game Room
The film’s bachelor paradise of a game room is a mixture of ’80s Deco and arcade elements. Yes, it’s a neon Deco ’80s arcade. Who wants to join me for a game of pool with Ted Danson, Steve Guttenberg and Tom Selleck?!
This room is certainly the most fun space in the house, but some of the film’s most touching scenes happen here. Maybe it’s no coincidence that these carefree bachelors embrace their destiny of fatherhood in a space originally intended for fun and games. Now that’s a film-worthy juxtaposition of themes! Check out the arched walkway leading up to this room in the shots above and below:
Three Men and a Baby features three very different leading men. Which is why the variety of styles represented under the roof of this apartment somehow makes sense. My favorite room: the boudoir of cartoonist Michael Kellam, played by Steve Guttenberg. This ’80s modern paradise is the perfect blend of bright background and colorful foreground. Check out that amazing bedding! And of course, Michele De Lucchi’s First Chair, another iconic Memphis piece.
The Memphis-style shelf in the background of the shot below seems to be inspired by this Michele De Lucchi lamp. No wonder Baby Mary loves spending so much time in Michael’s colorful room!
The rooms of the other characters are equally fabulous in their own way. Jack’s (Ted Danson) space is filled with items that seem to reflect his travels (such as filming TV movies on location), while Peter’s (Tom Selleck) room showcases the architect’s sense of style. How amazing is Peter’s space?! And there are even ’80s modern black striped sheets on the bed. And a potted dracaena!:
Folks, you can view all the screen shots in the world, but you really need to experience this apartment on a bigger screen. So head on over to Amazon and rent Three Men and a Baby, and watch it on your flatscreen (or the flatscreen of a good friend).
Did you spot any other iconic ’80s pieces in the shots above? Leave a comment and enlighten us!…
Me too. And there are so many things I missed the first time around, like Tom Selleck’s architectural-chic bedroom.