Almost exactly a year ago to the day I reported on a campaign that was forming to Save the Psycho House. The goal of the campaign was to save the wooden structure, the façade of Bates Mansion which still stands on a lot in Universal Studios. Although only being used as a backdrop, Bates Mansion/The Psycho House became one of the most prolific characters in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic 1960 feature film, Psycho. Since then, the house was used in the sequel Psycho II in 1983 and in episodes of “Night Gallery” and “The Hardy Boys.” Future Psycho films were filmed with a reconstructed version of Bates Mansion and Bates Motel was actually torn down in 1979.
As with most structures that are over fifty years old, Bates Mansion/The Psycho House started to be in need of repairs. Many participants in tours at Universal Studios couldn’t help but notice the slight dilapidation the wooden façade was falling into. The structure is currently noted to have warped, rotting timber, holes in the woodwork, railing damages, rotting shingles, and even small, but complete sections missing from the porch and roof. As it has become a piece of horror film history, fans began to worry that the house would fall apart on its own, or NBC/Universal would tare it down because of its hazardous appearance.
That’s where the Save the Psycho House Campaign came into play. With a following of over 9,300 people, the group forged a petition on Change.org to send a message to Universal Studios: We want to save the Psycho house! The petition managed to accumulate 9,500 signatures and was sent off to those in charge of the back lot. Other grassroots efforts were also implored to convince those in power to save the iconic, creepy home to Norman Bates. Then, things went dark for a while and no word came in either direction.
Until yesterday, Valentine’s Day 2015, when a gift was given to all of us horror fans. Exclusively covered by Inside Universal, restoration on The Psycho House has official begun! Congratulations, guys! We did it! I want to give a particular shout out to the Save the Psycho House Facebook page for all the effort they put into the campaign. Had it not been for the group/page, this may not have happened in such a timely and positive way!