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Adam Sandler’s New Movie Pays Homage to 1990s L.A.

In ‘Sandy Wexler,’ the comedian plays a Los Angeles talent manager with a crush on his client

by
Jonathan Zalman
February 23, 2017
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Adam Sandler as 'Sandy Wexler.'Facebook
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Adam Sandler as 'Sandy Wexler.'Facebook

I suppose, at this point, I’ve got to admit that Adam Sandler is old news. For better or worse, the Brooklyn-born comedy hero of the ’90s—the era of my adolescence that was ameliorated by Sandler’s fart jokes—has been replaced by the stylings of Seth Rogen, Melissa McCarthy, Zach Galifianakis, Andy Samberg, Amy Schumer, et al. These are the bankable stars of today because they put out good stuff; though Sandler still rakes it in (his movies have made nearly $4 billion worldwide), he puts out schlock.

It appears the quality of his movies might not matter anyway. His first Netflix film, the widely panned The Ridiculous 6, was the most watched released in the company’s history. His next one, The Do-Over, was somewhat decent but mostly because it had enough testicle jokes told by Luis Guzmán. His latest Netflix vehicle, part of a four-movie deal, is called Sandy Wexler, and tells the story of a Los Angeles talent agent in the ’90s (who’s likely Jewish; I mean, Wexler, Sandler… c’mon now).

With the help of my producer friend, an L.A. lifer, here are some of the locations in the city, then (1994) and now, that Sandy Wexler uses (plus lots of grunge references and cameos).

:14 – Location: Whiskey a Go Go. On the wall of the club are images of the Stone Temple Pilots’ album Purple, Offspring’s Smash, and Hole’s Live Through This. A Tower Records store, no longer there, was a block or so away.

:22 – This scene is probably shot on the Sony lot in Culver City, since that’s where Sandler’s production company is located. Oh, and there is a sighting of The Larry Sanders Show and Coach posters.

:23 – This looks like Ventura Blvd. at Lauren Canyon Blvd. in Studio City (the Valley) with some fake ’90s signs.

:43 – Book Soup on Sunset Blvd. My buddy said, “Somehow this is still open. Why I have no idea.”

:49 – Johnnie’s Hot Pastrami interior in Culver City. My buddy said, “I think this place is delicious but haven’t been in a decade.”

:51 – Great Western Forum where the Lakers used to play. My buddy said, “Get ready for this area to get fucking destroyed by the new Rams stadium next door.”

:57 – Six Flags Magic Mountain?

1:01 – The Improv in Hollywood

1:03 — Johnnie’s again on the outside. Sepulveda Blvd right by the Sony lot.

1:15 – Venice boardwalk

1:24 – Capitol Records building, Hollywood

Oh, and it looks not too bad, right? Doesn’t matter. Sandler’s sittin’ pretty. He’s earned it.

Jonathan Zalman is a writer and teacher based in Brooklyn.

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