You woke up on Monday thinking this was just going to be another week, when something magical happened: that Reese Witherspoon is reportedly nearing a deal to bring back her role as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde 3. Ahhhhhhhh! People are literally bending and snapping everywhere they go instead of walking because they are so excited! OK, maybe not people, but I certainly am.
The announcement got me thinking about a few things — like, how endorphins make you happy and happy people don't just shoot their husbands. But also, how dreamy the Delta Nu sorority house was in the movie, and how disappointed I was when I showed up to college 10 years after Legally Blonde's 2001 release to see what college actually looked like. Spoiler: Not that! I mean, that beautiful exterior! The balcony! The string lights! So, where was the Delta Nu house IRL, all these years later? Here's the story behind the dreamy house in which Elle Woods got her start.
Legally Blonde, $8.77; Amazon
It's actually a high school in Sierra Madre, California.
The building itself is called the , but it's a part of , an all-girls Catholic high school. The Villa isn't the main building on the 13-acre campus, but is the space used for formals, festivals, celebrations, occasional classes, and, of course, movies.
You've seen the same set in other movies and never realized it.
In addition to being used as Delta Nu in Legally Blonde, the Villa has been the set to dozens of television shows and movies. You might remember it from The Princess Diaries or Mommie Dearest, but it's also been a backdrop for Beverly Hills 90210, Bones, CSI Miami, The Master of Disguise, Sweet Bird of Youth, and even more. It's also been photographed for print advertisements by brands like Ralph Lauren and Vera Bradley.
Here it is in The Princess Diaries, when Anne Hathaway's character Mia Thermopolis is talking to her crush, Josh Bryant, played by Erik von Detten, at school.
Now you're probably all, "OMG, I remember that!" Cool stuff!
The Delta Nu set featured the interior of the Villa as well as the exterior.
Often, movies will just use the exterior of a house and then create their own interior set elsewhere. Legally Blonde transformed the interior and exterior of the Villa into Delta Nu. Some have floated around that the staircase was actually shot at Delta Gamma University of Southern California, but the Villa's staircase is nearly identical to the one in the movie.
Here it is in some of your favorite Legally Blonde scenes.
Iconic! The entire space is s-t-u-n-n-i-n-g.
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