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BUSINESS
May 30, 1987
A West German company with substantial land holdings in the United States apparently is going to acquire the sprawling Big Sky movie ranch in the San Fernando Valley for $35 million, officials said Friday. The 6,711-acre ranch, the biggest movie ranch in the country, has been the setting for a number of films and television programs, including "The Thornbirds" and the series "Gunsmoke," "Little House on the Prairie," "Father Murphy" and "Rawhide."
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ENTERTAINMENT
December 18, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Michael Corenblith is grateful for the rolling hills of Simi Valley. The production designer on Disney's "Saving Mr. Banks" relied heavily on the 10,000-acre Big Sky Ranch in the Ventura County city to help re-create the childhood home of P.L. Travers, the "Mary Poppins" novelist at the center of the film. The just-released movie starring Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson tells the story of Walt Disney's relationship with Travers and flashbacks on her tough childhood growing up in the Australian outback.  ON LOCATION: Where the cameras roll Disney had considered filming part of the movie in Australia, but ultimately decided to shoot virtually all the movie in Los Angeles (except for one day in London)
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 30, 1988 | RENE ROMO, Times Staff Writer
The Simi Valley Planning Commission has given initial approval for construction of 1,500 homes on the Big Sky movie ranch north of the city. The commission voted unanimously Thursday night to change the land-use designation to allow higher-density development on 600 acres owned by the Big Sky Ranch Co. The company wants to build a residential community with two golf courses and a small commercial center on acreage extending from Sand Canyon on the west to Tapo Canyon on the east.
NEWS
May 5, 2005 | From Associated Press
The deaths of two horses last month during the filming of a 20th Century Fox film called "Flicka" were unpreventable accidents, the American Humane Assn. said. In the first incident on April 11, a quarter horse misstepped and broke one of its back legs while being filmed cantering at the Big Sky Ranch in Simi Valley. The horse was put down after a veterinarian on the movie set determined the injury was untreatable.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 13, 1994 | MACK REED, TIMES STAFF WRITER
One of the biggest players in Simi Valley's vast Whiteface development plan has filed for bankruptcy protection and defaulted on thousands of dollars in Ventura County property taxes. The Big Sky Ranch Co. had planned to use 1,000 acres of land in Sand Canyon on Simi Valley's northern edge for the construction of Wyndmere, a development of 1,100 houses and a golf course for senior citizens.
NEWS
April 30, 1992 | LEO SMITH, TIMES STAFF WRITER
On Sunday the Ojai Film Society folks will kick off what they have dubbed their "Festival of Slightly Overlooked American Movies From 1991." (Maybe they overlooked some films--the festival is only two movies long.) The first movie is the Joel and Ethan Coen production "Barton Fink," starring John Turturro in the title role, John Goodman, Judy Davis and Michael Lerner. The story centers on a playwright, writing for the working class, who is thrown into the Hollywood system.
NEWS
November 24, 1988 | DENISE HAMILTON, Times Staff Writer
John Etter isn't a member of any environmental group. He doesn't know his way around the halls of Ventura County government and has no friends in influential places. Still, Etter is proof that a little guy from Simi Valley can take on developers, City Hall and scads of federal, state and local agencies. And win.
BUSINESS
June 15, 1987 | From United Press International
None of the auction bids offered Saturday for most of the 10,000-acre Big Sky Movie Ranch were accepted by the firm that owns the famed film and television locale and had hoped to sell the land for more than $30 million. Following the auction for four parcels totaling 6,711 acres 35 miles northwest of Los Angeles in Simi Valley, representatives of the Big Sky Movie Ranch Co. declined to accept any of the offers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 7, 1989
Renaissance Pleasure Faire officials have been negotiating with the owners of Big Sky Ranch north of Simi Valley to rent about 100 acres in eastern Ventura County for the annual festival, a spokesman said. A lease agreement is "all worked out" but access to the property on Tapo Canyon Road remains an obstacle to getting a permit from Ventura County, fair spokesman Kevin Patterson said.
NEWS
May 5, 2005 | From Associated Press
The deaths of two horses last month during the filming of a 20th Century Fox film called "Flicka" were unpreventable accidents, the American Humane Assn. said. In the first incident on April 11, a quarter horse misstepped and broke one of its back legs while being filmed cantering at the Big Sky Ranch in Simi Valley. The horse was put down after a veterinarian on the movie set determined the injury was untreatable.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 13, 1994 | MACK REED, TIMES STAFF WRITER
One of the biggest players in Simi Valley's vast Whiteface development plan has filed for bankruptcy protection and defaulted on thousands of dollars in Ventura County property taxes. The Big Sky Ranch Co. had planned to use 1,000 acres of land in Sand Canyon on Simi Valley's northern edge for the construction of Wyndmere, a development of 1,100 houses and a golf course for senior citizens.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 16, 1993 | PHIL SNEIDERMAN
The Simi Valley area movie ranch where "Little House on the Prairie" was filmed will be the setting for a festival Saturday and Sunday aimed at raising money for the Simi Valley Family YMCA. The Big Sky Country Fair will feature stunt acts, pony rides, movie set tours, frontier exhibits, live music, midway games and refreshments. The 35-member K Troop will re-create U. S. cavalry drills from the 1880s.
NEWS
April 30, 1992 | LEO SMITH, TIMES STAFF WRITER
On Sunday the Ojai Film Society folks will kick off what they have dubbed their "Festival of Slightly Overlooked American Movies From 1991." (Maybe they overlooked some films--the festival is only two movies long.) The first movie is the Joel and Ethan Coen production "Barton Fink," starring John Turturro in the title role, John Goodman, Judy Davis and Michael Lerner. The story centers on a playwright, writing for the working class, who is thrown into the Hollywood system.
NEWS
April 4, 1991 | LEO SMITH, TIMES STAFF WRITER
There's about one week left to purchase discount tickets to the fifth annual open house at the Big Sky Movie Ranch in Simi Valley April 13 and 14. All proceeds will benefit the Simi Valley Family YMCA. If you're not familiar with it, the movie ranch has been used as a set for many television and film productions during the past 30 years. Movies filmed there include the Tarzanesque "The Beastmaster" (1982), Eddie Murphy's "Coming to America" (1988) and the 1988 horror flick "Pumpkinhead."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 1, 1990 | CARLOS V. LOZANO, TIMES STAFF WRITER
It was not exactly high noon, and the cowboy gunfighters preparing to battle it out were really just actors, but that was OK with 8-year-old Autumn Smith. "I just love gunfights," Autumn said. "Oh, you see them all the time" on television, said the girl's mother, Judy Smith. "I know, but I just like them," Autumn said as she watched as six gruff-looking gunslingers faced off in a dramatic duel that ended with each popping off several rounds of blanks.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 7, 1989
Renaissance Pleasure Faire officials have been negotiating with the owners of Big Sky Ranch north of Simi Valley to rent about 100 acres in eastern Ventura County for the annual festival, a spokesman said. A lease agreement is "all worked out" but access to the property on Tapo Canyon Road remains an obstacle to getting a permit from Ventura County, fair spokesman Kevin Patterson said.
BUSINESS
April 20, 1987 | NANCY RIVERA BROOKS, Times Staff Writer
The stomping grounds of Marshal Matt Dillon, Laura Ingalls and about 1,000 head of cattle are up for sale. Big Sky Movie Ranch in Simi Valley, which has masqueraded as Kansas for "Gunsmoke" and Minnesota for "Little House on the Prairie" among other places, will be auctioned in four parcels totaling 6,711 acres.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 21, 1988 | DENISE HAMILTON, Times Staff Writer
County, state and federal officials are upset over a Simi Valley developer's bulldozing of 80 acres of pristine canyon land without acquiring the permits necessary to develop it. Owners of the Big Sky Ranch contend that the grading, which leveled hills 30 feet high, was done for agricultural purposes. No permits are required for such work. "We've been farming in that area for years and we thought we'd grade so we could plant more crops . . . .
NEWS
November 24, 1988 | DENISE HAMILTON, Times Staff Writer
John Etter isn't a member of any environmental group. He doesn't know his way around the halls of Ventura County government and has no friends in influential places. Still, Etter is proof that a little guy from Simi Valley can take on developers, City Hall and scads of federal, state and local agencies. And win.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 21, 1988 | DENISE HAMILTON, Times Staff Writer
County, state and federal officials are upset over a Simi Valley developer's bulldozing of 80 acres of pristine canyon land without acquiring the permits necessary to develop it. Owners of the Big Sky Ranch contend that the grading, which leveled hills 30 feet high, was done for agricultural purposes. No permits are required for such work. "We've been farming in that area for years and we thought we'd grade so we could plant more crops . . . .
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