August 31, 2004 -- FINDING a location to film Fox's new ren- ovation/reality show "The Complex" turned out to be very, uh, complex.
"It took the better part of 2003 to find the property," executive producer Ted Hamies told The Post about the show, which debuted last night.
"We discovered that we had to find an empty property with significant parking in order to convert it from a single residence to condos," he says. The building "also had to fit the creative needs of the show and be in a stunning location so it would look great on TV."
Any house hunter today knows prime real estate is hard enough to come by, but running down the perfect property for a TV show that cannot be filmed on a studio set is a tough ticket.
On the show, eight couples move into a four-condo building in Malibu and compete to restore and redecorate the pricey units that overlook the Pacific Ocean.
The winning couple gets control of the entire complex and its profits.
The 1970s-era Malibu building the producers eventually bought was originally used for rentals and was empty. No one had to be evicted.
"It took five months to get it to just the skeletal work," says Haimes. Work included a new roof and drainage, new air conditioning and plumbing.
— Don Kaplan