Southern California is a generally pretty popular place to film, but over the years Pasadena seems to have played a great role in many films. Here is a look at some of the Pasadena area restaurants that have been featured in films over the years—with the help of a lot of research on IAMNOTASTALKER.COM.
Every local’s favorite old-school style soda fountain is apparently pretty popular with filmmakers too. Fair Oaks Pharmacy in South Pasadena appears in the 2002 Adam Sandler vehicle, Mr. Deeds. Not the best Adam Sandler movie, but the Arroyo is definitely the best sundae. Although it didn’t actually take place in the soda fountain, the Mission Street neighborhood around the pharmacy doubles for a New Jersey town in the opening scene of the late Britanny Murphy’s Little Black Book.
It’s not technically in Pasadena, but one of nearby Eagle Rock’s most famous eateries, Auntie Em’s is featured in the Kate Bosworth rom-com Life Happens. The kitschy kitchen has plenty of ties to the entertainment industry, thanks to the owner’s past life as a singer and her celebrity fan base. The comfort food focused café has since opened a second location in downtown L.A.
And he’s not really a movie star—although he does make the odd appearance, but apparently Joel McHale loves hanging out at Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea in Old Pasadena. Although he has yet to shoot The Soup from there, as far as I can tell.
The bar that is the original meet-cute for the stars of Grey’s Anatomy is the basement of the former McMurphy’s Restaurant and Tavern, which became Dullahans and then 72 North, named for its location at 72 North Fair Oaks.
The Old Towne Pub and POP Champagne & Dessert Bar provided both interior and exterior shots for episodes of True Blood, the vampire show that seemed to be inspire a trend in blood-sucking. The music venue is very unlike the posh bar so it must have taken a little Hollywood magic to make the two blend into a vampire den.
Il Fornaio was used in What Women Want and is a great spot for a pre- or post movie night dinner in Miller Alley. It’s especially delicious if you happen to be seeing an Italian-themed film and will be craving pasta.
The space formerly known as Cheval Blanc Bistro and now reinvented as The White Horse, appeared in Steve Martin’s version of Father of the Bride (the filming location of the house used in the original version with Spencer Tracy is also in town).
Other former eateries that have been used in films include the defunct Vive Lounge in A Lot Like Love and the original Beverly Hills 90210 gang’s hangout, The Peach Pit was actually Ruby’s Diner that later became Maikobe Japanese Restaurant before closing and becoming the now closed Culture22.
Let me know any that I missed—I’m sure there are a few!