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'Celeste and Jesse Forever' divorce in and pal around L.A.

'Celeste and Jesse Forever,' starring Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg as a divorcing couple who try to best friends, is a tour of one Los Angeles experience.

August 01, 2012|By Rebecca Keegan, Los Angeles Times
  • Andy Samberg and Rashida Jones star in "Celeste and Jesse Forever."
Andy Samberg and Rashida Jones star in "Celeste and Jesse Forever." (Sony Pictures Classics )

In the new romantic comedy "Celeste and Jesse Forever," Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg play a young Los Angeles couple who attempt to remain best friends as they go through a divorce.

Written by Jones and Will McCormack, the film, opening Friday, takes the pair through a cityscape that will seem very familiar to many professional, thirtysomething Angelenos: Up-and-coming marketer Celeste and unemployed artist Jesse traverse an L.A. of canyon hikes, frozen yogurt shops and funky bars.

Because of the independent production's storytelling aims and its $1-million budget, director Lee Toland Krieger shot the Sony Pictures Classics film mostly in and around Hollywood, Echo Park and Silver Lake, where locations and permits are cheaper and easier to procure than in West Hollywood or on the Westside.

PHOTOS: Hollywood back lot moments

And unlike many studio romantic comedies that place young strivers in luxe surroundings they could never afford, the settings in "Celeste and Jesse Forever" are meant to reflect the lifestyle of Generation Xers who are financially comfortable but not wealthy — people residing somewhere at the nexus of Prius and IKEA.

"We wanted to give it the feeling of the L.A. we all know," said producer Jennifer Todd. "And one that felt appropriate to where they are in their lives."

Here's a look at some of the key locations:

Stories Books and Cafe

1716 W. Sunset Blvd., Echo Park

In one of the movie's many awkward moments, a separated Celeste and Jesse are browsing the stacks at this homey bookstore when they run into a woman Jesse recently dated.

Chateau Marmont

8221 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood

When Celeste and a suitor (Matthew Del Negro) get romantic in a suite at the storied Hollywood Hills hotel, she discovers he's more interested in his own satisfaction.

Yogurt Haven

2256 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock

In one of Jesse's first attempts at moving on, he decides to ask out the young counter girl he's been ogling at this yogurt shop.

Yoga at the Raven

2910 Rowena Ave., Silver Lake

With a post-downward dog glow, Celeste meets potential love interest Paul (Chris Messina) at this yoga studio.

La Descarga

1159 N. Western Ave., Hollywood

Celeste and Paul enter this eccentric nightclub through a wooden wardrobe door and watch as a fire eater performs at the bar.

The Coffee Table Bistro

1958 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock

This Zen-like restaurant stands in for the fictional Vegan Vittles, where Jesse, who has radically cleaned up his diet in the midst of a new romance, meets up with a spiraling Celeste.

Walt Disney Concert Hall

111 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles

Scenes shot in front of the Frank Gehry-designed music center bookend the film, illustrating the evolution of Celeste and Jesse's relationship.

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