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RUMOR HAS IT

About The Production
Rumor Has It…is set in 1997 to sync the timing of The Graduate novel and movie with the ages of the characters, but the setting is essentially contemporary Pasadena, with stops in New York and Northern California along the way. 

Founded around 1885 at the base of the San Gabriel Mountains, Pasadena was a favorite winter retreat for wealthy Easterners and many of their original mansions still stand. In the film, a running joke among the Huttingers's social circle is, "No one is from Los Angeles. But if you're from Los Angeles, you're probably from Pasadena.”

"It's like a lot of suburban communities with more traditional, conservative values,” comments producer Ben Cosgrove. "It's the picket fence world that Sarah is frightened to death of falling into and almost another fully formed character in the story.” 

The film takes place across several landscapes – New York, where Sarah lives and where she ultimately must return; Pasadena, home of the Huttingers; and Northern California, where Sarah finds Beau Burroughs country. 

Two-time Academy Award nominee Thomas Sanders (Saving Private Ryan, Bram Stoker's Dracula) sought to create these distinct habitats. "The colors in the Huttingers's world are a little on the boring side and claustrophobic,” he describes, "whereas Beau Burroughs's world was all about beauty, color and being outside. We worked very carefully on a palette to make sure that when our characters were in the different environments, it echoed those worlds.”

The filmmakers set the wedding rehearsal dinner at the Huttinger home to hone in on the family's unique character. "Pasadena is not a poor world by any means,” says Sanders, "but we wanted to compare Beau's extremely wealthy world to Sarah's so you could see how this dramatic change in scenery would affect her.” 

Costume designer Kym Barrett (the Matrix trilogy) infused the wardrobe with the same focus on contrasts. "To take a person who is very average and unassuming and throw her into an unbelievable and out of the ordinary situation seemed liked a wonderful idea because you could play the two worlds off of one another,” she says. 

Barrett created a very typical wardrobe for a young professional woman in 1997, keeping in mind that she would only be in Pasadena for a short time and would therefore have a limited wardrobe. "Then, when she is thrust into this delay with all these romantic events, I wanted to make it so that all the things that she wore could be adapted into those situations,” says Barrett.

During fittings in pre-production, Barrett was able to collaborate with the actors to get additional insight into the characters from the cast. "Jennifer had some very strong ideas of what Sarah would wear,” she notes. "She didn't particularly want ‘designed' clothes, as Sarah isn't exactly a fashion-plate. We ended up making some of her costumes but other things that she wears we bought and then altered to make them look more like something she would wear in the period.”

By contrast, nearly the entire wardrobe Shirley MacLaine's character, Katharine, was hand-made. "We had a lot of fun with Shirley because she was so totally enthralled with her character,” Barrett recalls. "She wanted to know the back story and the color scheme, all of which are things that make a job fun for me. I loved that she really looked like a true movie star.”

Filming commenced in Palos Verdes, California, before moving to downtown Los Angeles' Four Seasons Biltmore Hotel. The following weeks saw the cast and crew move to Pasadena to utilize numerous neighborhoods and locations throughout the city.

Several historic Pasadena structures appear in Rumor Has It..., including All Saints Episcopal Church, a gothic structure built in 1923, which is known for its stained glass, including an original Tiffany window. The church is the s

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