My Best Friend's Wedding | 1997
The locations for My Best Friend’s Wedding can all be found around Chicago – including the swanky ‘New York’ restaurant where the staff wait on the verdict of food critic Julianne Potter (Julia Roberts), which was the famed Charlie Trotter’s, at 816 West Armitage Avenue at North Halsted Street, south of DePaul University. The restaurant closed in 2012 and in 2013 the celebrity owner unexpectedly died. That is the late Charlie Trotter himself playing the chef – "I will kill your whole family if you don't get this right!".
Getting the call from long-time pal Michael (Dermot Mulroney) that he’s getting married, Julianne flies off to Chicago, where she's met by Michael and his bride-to-be Kimmy (Cameron Diaz) at America’s busiest air terminal, the vast O’Hare Airport, 17 miles northwest of the city. Among the airport’s many screen appearances, its most famous must be as the departure point for the MacAllister family, without Kevin, in Home Alone.
After a spell of claustrophobia in the lift, Julianne meets Kimmy’s mother at the Conrad Hilton Suite of the Chicago Hilton and Towers, 720 South Michigan Avenue, used also in Road To Perdition, Home Alone II: Lost In New York and The Fugitive.
Kimmy’s extraordinarily wealthy father (Philip Bosco) supposedly owns the Chicago White Sox baseball team, and Julianne meets him in a box at, their home stadium, US Cellular Field, 333 West 35th Street, which opened in 1991, and in 1997 still retained the more familiar old name ‘Comiskey Park’.
In a spasm of jealousy, Julianne decides she wants to marry Michael herself, and sets about sabotaging his relationship with Kimmy.
A couple of major locations have disappeared, and one of those is the karaoke bar, where Julianne’s plan to humiliate Kimmy goes horribly wrong as the crowd falls in love with her attempt to get her tonsils around I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself. Donnie’s, which stood on South Wabash Avenue at East Balbo Avenue, hasn’t just had a revamp or a change of name, it’s been demolished.
Julianne’s next move is to play on Michael’s fear that his job isn’t good enough for Kimmy’s rich family, by getting Kimmy’s father to offer Michael a job.
She plants the idea in Kimmy’s mind as the pair shop in the old Marshall Field’s department store, which – to the fury of many – was taken over in 2005 to become Macy’s State Street, 111 State Street.
Kimmy duly approaches her dad at his club, the exclusive Union League Club, 65 West Jackson Boulevard, an exclusive social club dating back to roots in the 1860s.
When this, too, fails, Julianne calls for help from her other old pal George, (Rupert Everett), who turns up at her room in the Drake Hotel, 140 East Walton Place at Michigan Avenue. It's in the Drake that Tom Cruise meets up with Rebecca De Mornay in his 1983 breakout hit Risky Business.
If you wanted to join in a chorus of I Say A Little Prayer at ‘Barry the Cuda’s’ seafood restaurant, I’m afraid you’ve missed your opportunity. It’s the other lost location. The restaurant was Joe's Crabshack at 745 North Wells, (at the time of filming, it was called The Crab House), which is now also totally gone.
Before the nuptials, Julian and Michael enjoy a last moment alone together on a cruise along the Chicago River through the Loop.
The river is overlooked by the ‘Wallace Companies’ building, the office of Kimmy’s father. It’s 77 West Wacker Drive, from where Julianne desperately sends a fake email sacking Michael from his job as a sports reporter.
The pre-wedding brunch is held Kimmy’s parents’ expansive estate, which is the Cuneo Mansion and Gardens, 1350 North Milwaukee Avenue (now part of Loyola University), in Vernon Hills, on Route 60 about 35 miles northwest of Chicago itself.
A mansion built in 1914 for Thomas Edison’s partner, Samuel Insull, it was bought by Chicago businessman John Cuneo in 1937 and remained the family home until 1990. In 2009, the Cuneo Foundation gave the estate to Loyola University.
As Julianne’s plans begin to succeed all too well, the wedding threatens to fall apart, with both Michael and Kimmy fleeing the party.
Julianne hijacks a bakery truck to track down the despondent Michael to central Chicago. She finds him in the Great Hall of Chicago Union Station, 210 South Canal Street, and finally comes clean about her underhand tactics. The station’s classical waiting area has been seen in plenty of films, including The Untouchables, Man Of Steel, The Sting and The Package.
With everything sorted and forgiven, the wedding finally goes ahead on Chicago’s Magnificent Mile, at the Fourth Presbyterian Church, on Michigan Avenue at East Chestnut Street.