Chances are, you haven’t seen much of Bronson Pinchot in the past decade or so — unless, of course, you frequent hardware stores in Harford, Pennsylvania. Pinchot is still best known for playing Balki on the sitcom Perfect Strangers from 1986 to 1993, but he stepped out of the spotlight a few years later and turned to an unlikely profession: Restoring homes.
Pinchot explained how he wound up living in rural Pennsylvania in an interview with Good Morning America. “I was in New York City and I was doing a Broadway show, and I was on a computer and I happened to see country houses with land around them that were the cost of half a New York City studio apartment,” he said. “I just got it into my head that I had to have one, and then I got another one and another one.” Pinchot now owns five houses in the area, and he’s restored each of them using only salvaged objects.
In another surprising career twist, Pinchot’s love of building has brought him back into the entertainment world. His new DIY Network series, the aptly titled Bronson Pinchot Project, follows his adventures in home remodeling. The actor says he was never really comfortable being famous, but he’s enjoying meeting fans of the reality show. “What happens now is people will sit next to me on the plane [and] they’ll go, ‘So, Bronson, I’ve got this crud, like, in between my tiles,’ and I’m like, ‘Muriatic acid, but make sure you wear a mask,'” he says.