KANSAS CITY, Mo. – An entrepreneur from Kansas is the official new owner of the famed “Goonies house” in Astoria, Oregon.
The Victorian-era house built in 1896 was featured in the classic Richard Donner and Steven Spielberg film The Goonies. The movie stars an ensemble of ’80s child actors, and highlights a group of kids who, after finding out their friend’s parents’ home is in foreclosure, set out to find a fabled pirate ship full of gold, rubies, emeralds and diamonds.
The house in question is the same one Kansas City native Behman Zakeri has purchased for $1.6 million.
Zakeri told The Heartlander he saw the film in the summer of 1985 and it inspired him to find the treasures of the real world.
“It inspired me, it molded and shaped who I am today,” Zakeri said. “The positive influence The Goonies did for me was kind of teaching me you gotta have a relentless desire when you’re trying to be successful. No matter what obstacle is thrown at you, what rock is going to try to fall on your head or floor falls out from beneath you, you just keep pushing through and go through that tunnel. Eventually you’ll find gold at the end of the tunnel.”
Zakeri says his goal for the Goonies house is to ensure it appears as it did when the film was shot, and to let fans enjoy it as much as he does.
“Really, it’s open to whatever. I would like as many fans to be able to enjoy this as we have. It’s such an iconic landmark. My neighbor two houses down is so passionate about The Goonies and preserving this as well. We’ve all got to work together to make sure as many fans can enjoy it as everybody else.”
The new owner says he and his family plan to find as many movie props as possible. Previous owner Sandi Preston has become a friend to Zakeri and has offered to leave some memorabilia behind. As of late, engineers have been on hand to recreate the movie’s Rube Goldberg-style chain-reaction contraption on the outside of the house to help properly mimic the “truffle shuffle” dance that Chunk does in one scene.
Additionally, Zakeri says fans have already come up the driveway and they were required to do the “truffle shuffle” for a video.
“It’s almost like recreating the movie and making The Goonies. Fans feel like, ‘Wow, this is what it felt like and looked like back when they filmed it.’ The people who came up today asked if they could come up on the porch. I told them, ‘Absolutely, come take pictures. Hug the pole like Mikey did in the movie and look at the horizon.’ Whatever you need to do to make that magical feeling come about, that’s what this is about.”
The city of Astoria observes a Goonies Day every year on June 7 that brings thousands of fans from around the world. This summer’s celebration will mark the 38th anniversary of The Goonies release date.
Neighbors of the Goonies house are all fans of the movie. One 80-year-old neighbor says he likes being called the “Old Goonie.”
Zakeri and his wife plan to remain living in their Kansas home and will use their newfound Goonies treasure as a vacation home. He says there is a possibility of renting it for months at a time for special occasions, including filming for a long-awaited Goonies sequel if filmmakers are interested.
Preston felt Zakeri was the right man to purchase the home and chose his bid over a higher one. He became friends with Preston during his first visit to the Goonies house, and discussed the possibility of buying it if she were ever willing to sell. Once Zakeri caught wind of the viral listing, he immediately threw his name into the hat.
The entrepreneur has created and runs a trading card and collectible company called Collector’s Cache and an escape room business, as well as “We Buy Gold” and “Bury the Hatchet KC.” Zakeri told The Heartlander he is not done with his business ventures, and says there is a possibility for more Goonies adventures in the form of an idea called “One-Eyed Willy’s Treasure Hunt,” in which players would receive real money and jewels as a prize.
He’s unsure whether that starts in Kansas City or starts in Astoria or a mix of both.
“Maybe you have to start in Kansas City and end up in Astoria to find the treasure. I think it would be amazing to work with someone like MrBeast, the big YouTuber. He regularly gives away a million-plus dollars on his Youtube videos. I’ve already reached out to Logan Paul; he’s a friend of mine and Logan’s a Goonie. His sidekick Mike (from his podcast) is a big Goonie. I invited them to do an episode of their podcast inside the Goonies house. They’re interested.”