Pia Zadora claims she demolished Douglas Fairbanks’ home because it was infested with “ghosts” and “termites”.
In 1998, the ‘Hairspray’ star and her first husband Meshulam Riklis bought Pickfair Manor in Beverly Hills - where
the Hollywood icon and wife Mary Pickford famously through lavish dinner parties in the 1920s for the likes of Charlie Chaplin, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, H.G. Wells, US President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Albert Einstein - but sparked outrage by demolishing the property and building a new house in the grounds.
However, Pia has insisted they did what needed to be done to the property.
She told the US edition of Closer magazine: “I never wanted Pickfair. Meshulam wanted to leave me this legacy, but my kids swore to me there were ghosts. And there were termites.
"I wouldn’t tent it [for extermination] because I didn’t want the chemicals. So someone said: ‘Tear it down’.”
She went on to defend the controversial decision, adding: “Look it was my house - suck it! But it never felt like home. Too much marble. Too many Picassos.”
Pia went on to split from businessman Meshulam - who she married in 1977 and divorced in 1993 - and he kept the house.
The pair remained close until his death in 2019 and he even invited her back to Pickfair along with her third husband Michael Jeffries when they needed somewhere to stay after their own house flooded.
She explained: “He spoke at both of my [next two] weddings and called my [current] husband, Michael, his husband-in-law. When our house flooded, he invited is to move back to Pickfair and gave us the master bedroom during our construction.”
Pia isn’t the only one who claims the house was haunted - previous owner Mary also suggested she’d experienced paranormal activity there.
In a 1932 newspaper interview, she said: “I am a sound sleeper, but I could not sleep under these noises which sounded like the tramping of heavy feet. I sat up in bed and addressed myself to the ghost, ‘I wouldn’t treat you this way,’ I said. ‘It isn’t ladylike. I don’t expect to be treated in this manner. The noises ceased.”