Local Current Blog

A look inside the ‘Purple Rain’ house in Minneapolis

The 'Purple Rain' house in Minneapolis, 2016 (Jay Gabler/MPR)

Less than a year before his death, Prince bought the house that appeared in exterior shots in his iconic film Purple Rain. The Minneapolis house was placed on the market in 2015 for an asking price of $110,000, with the seller cautioning that the house was in need of very significant repairs.

The purchase happened quickly, but in the brief time the property was available, Minneapolis resident Nancy Swanson toured the house and took several photos. She’s shared the photos, below, which reflect the house’s condition circa last summer. (As Jay Boller points out, you can spot the new boiler described in the real estate listing.)

It’s hard to resist trying to spot the location where the Kid might have made out with Apollonia, or where he cried over his father’s piano music, but you won’t find an exact match: the house was only used for exterior shots.

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  • funoka

    Looks like a nice set for a 1930s horror movie.

  • Beth Sagvold

    Does anyone know how this particular home was chosen for the exterior shots?


      Location scouts select several spots for each scene, and the directors/producers/cinematographers and others on the creative team choose the locations.

    • Kitty Pilch-Hopkins

      That basement was in the movie too. Those stairs….

  • Teri Anderson

    I wonder what he had planned for this old run down house? He was going to fix it up I’m sure. I think he bought it to be an additional landmark for a museum of purple rain memorabilia upon his eventual demise. He could have planned to open it as a museum while alive if he’d had enough time to. That would have been another way to put someone to work and gain attention for his body of work. Oh I wish I was able to remodel and fix up that house the way it should be..How fun that would be!!

    • Teri Anderson

      I wonder if zoning laws might prevent that idea from being made possible?

  • Immanuel6

    I was wondering what Prince had in mind for this property. I am so glad he purchased it, but as an real estate appraiser myself; I realize that because of the property’s location, it would be difficult to create a museum in this family oriented neighborhood. I pray that Prince’s family do something creative with this spot.?

  • hammy

    i love how the old cement front stairs lead to a window

  • jcluvstrnity

    I’m just thinking when I see the dining/living room area, “Where are you?! Answer me MF!” And I hear the ballad his father is playing when I see the stairs and also hear the shot and see the paramedics….. Wow!

    • Brandon Lee Sparkman

      They didn’t actually shoot any scenes inside the house. It was used strictly 4 exterior shots

  • carebearz

    It just proves again that Prince was a very sentimental human being. ?