Based on the novel by Jenny Han, the movie is the story of Lara Jean Covey (Lana Condor), a 16-year-old whose younger sister takes the bold but well-meaning step to send out love letters Lara Jean has been hoarding to the five boys she’s had crushes on in her young life.
The film is smart and sweet, and hits a lot of notes that are appealing to a vast audience. And for viewers in Vancouver, there’s a lot that might look familiar, from the Vancouverite cast members (i.e. Emilija Baranac, Anna Cathcart, and Madeleine Arthur) and the principal locations.
There aren’t many locations used in the film (shortened to TATBILB for hashtag and convenience), but the ones they do use feature prominently in the film. And no surprise, while TATBILB is set in Portland, Oregon (though the books are set in Han’s home state of Virginia), it was filmed in Vancouver.
Die hard fans, take note. Here are the primary Vancouver locations used in To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. And if you haven’t seen it (or need to see it again), it’s perfect long weekend viewing.
Lara Jean, Peter, Josh, Christine, and Gen all attend the Adler High School, and there is a lot of on screen action here. Filmed at Point Grey Secondary School, you’ll recognize the bright blue track and field (no spoilers!) where a lot of important moments went down, along with the picnic benches, parking lots, and bleachers–though those bleachers were put in for the movie. This school has some famous alumni (like Seth Rogen) and is used quite often for location shoots, so you may also recognize it from shows like Riverdale or The Man in the High Castle.
When Lara Jean needs a break from her life, she heads to the Corner Cafe for a drink and a think. It’s also where she spends some quality time with the men in her life–namely Peter and her dad. The seemingly frozen in time spot holds a lot of memories for the Coveys. They used the exterior and the interior of this quirky North Vancouver diner for the movie.
The Coveys have a pretty beautiful home, and it doesn’t owe too much to movie magic. Located in Fort Langley, the house used for the Covey family is on Gay Street, and was used for the exterior and interior. A 2015 realtor’s tour video gives a great peek into this beautiful property. Josh Sanderson’s house, used for exteriors, is next door.
When Lara Jean and Kitty and their dad take big sis Margot to the airport, it’s not quite at a real airport. The movie used the BCIT Aerospace Technology Campus–which is near the Vancouver Airport–as a location. That might be why it only kinda sorta looked like an airport terminal.
Vancouver Is Awesome, and we are a media company dedicated to sharing stories about everything that makes it that way.
Who is Anna Cathcart from Netflixs hit To All The Boys Ive Loved Before? You might say her character, Kitty, Lara Jeans (Lana Condor) deviously adorable younger sister is the most important one in the movie. After all, she was the one who sent out her sisters secret letters to all of her crushes and ignited the story that we have all grown to love.
I thought this project and film was supercool and different, especially because having an Asian-American lead is really cool, she said. It was based on a popular book with a really big fan base and it made me smile when I was reading the script.
“It was amazing, I wish we could go back and do it all over again tomorrow. It was such a fun time, like a whole other family. The first day we filmed, me and Lana and Janel were acting like we had already known each other for years. We were so close and so comfortable with each other and always making each other giggle. It was great. We became like real-life sisters and would always hang out on and off set. We still keep in contact. We have our Covey sister group chat, and we are always texting. I love them so much.”
“Well, when I read the book I was definitely team Josh because he is such a nice guy and he has been friends with the sisters forever, and he comes over for dinner and he is just so nice. I feel so bad for him after Margo leaves and everything. He needs a happy ending too, so I was definitely team Josh. But Peter is so nice and so great, too. At first I thought Peter was too much of the cool guy, the jock that everybody knows and loves, but whos a player. But thats just his first impression. He is really nice and sweet. They are both good, but I still think Josh needs a happy ending. I was so upset when it ended and he didnt have Margo, he didnt have Lara Jean, and he didnt really resolve anything with Margo.”
“So during the process of figuring out if I should take the role, they offered and asked if it would be okay if I dyed my hair a little darker to match Lanas more. I was worried I might lose this role if I said no. But [my family and I] said no, that we would actually rather that not be the case. Eventually [the producers] decided that they still wanted me. They made Janels hair a little bit lighter, I think, so I matched Janel. Thats basically how it worked out.”
Molly Given is a writer with an entertainment/ celeb expertise living in Philadelphia. She is a lover of all things to do with mystery and magic in life. When shes not writing her fingers off she can be found planning her next adventure in a new part of the world.