Jennifer Lopez’s Brownstone in “The Back-up Plan”

by hookedonhouses on August 8, 2011

The 2010 romantic comedy The Back-up Plan starring Jennifer Lopez and Alex O’Loughlin didn’t get great reviews, but a lot of my readers gave the set design two thumbs up. I finally had a chance to watch the movie myself this weekend and get some photos of Zoe’s apartment in New York City for you.

First off, does the front of her brownstone look familiar?

According to On the Set New York, it’s only two doors down from Carrie Bradshaw’s apartment in “Sex and the City” (70 Perry Street and Bleecker Street in Manhattan).

The real interiors of this apartment weren’t used for the movie, though–they were created at Warner Bros. studios in California.

The Production Designer for this movie was Alec Hammond, and the Set Decorator was Kathy Lucas. Interestingly, the project Lucas worked on before this one was The Ugly Truth.

It was great seeing Linda Lavin as Lopez’s “Nana” in this movie. I grew up watching reruns of her sitcom “Alice” that seemed to play on an endless loop in the afternoons (“Kiss my grits!”). Tom Bosley played Lavin’s boyfriend in the movie. This was his final role before his death last year at the age of 83.

When the camera pans up the exterior of the brownstone and looks through a window, we can see the sofa in Zoe’s living room:

The Back-up Plan was supposed to be Jennifer Lopez’s “movie comeback.” Her last one had been El cantante in 2006 with husband Marc Anthony (the couple recently announced their split). She had taken time off to be with her twins Max and Emme (you can see their nursery here).

In this shot of Zoe sitting in her dining room, you can see that it opens into her bedroom without any doors between the two (a reader points out that there were probably pocket doors that were just not used):

A quick shot of the fireplace in the dining room:

The kitchen seems pretty big for a city apartment. One thing I learned from this movie is that there must be a lot money in running an “ethical pet store” like Zoe does. 😉

Did you know Alex O’Loughlin is Australian? One of his first roles was as part of the “kissing couple” (that’s how he was billed) in The Holiday. Now he plays Steve McGarrett in the new version of “Hawaii Five-O.”

Zoe’s bathroom has blue and red tile:

Her bedroom has an upholstered headboard that I’ve gotten a lot of emails about–everyone seems to love it and want one just like it:

UPDATE: A reader found the bed at Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams. It’s called the Celina bed (thanks, Katy!):

At the end of the movie, we get a glimpse into a room off the dining room that I don’t think we’d seen before, which has now become a nursery for the twins:

Check out Jennifer Lopez’s new house in California, where she moved after taking the job on “American Idol” last year.


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Luciane at August 8, 2011 at 7:27 am

I saw this movie and I actually liked it. I mean, it’s a romantic comedy… we all know what happens at the end, but that’s what’s cool and light about it. :-)

The apartment was very charming! Thank you for putting this post together, Julia!

Have a blessed week.


Luciane at

nanne August 8, 2011 at 7:32 am

hurray for movie mondays!! thanks julia!

nanne in columbus, indiana

Neesha August 8, 2011 at 7:40 am

I actually enjoyed this movie. Maybe I’m just a sucker for romcoms but I haven’t really seen a lot I didn’t like. :) I also drooled over her apartment and wondered just how much she earns LOL

Mrs. Moss August 8, 2011 at 7:49 am

Looks like there are pocket doors between the bedroom and dining room. :) Looks like I’ll be perusing the real estate in NYC for a great part of the afternoon! Thanks, Julia!

hookedonhouses August 8, 2011 at 8:35 am

Probably. If they ever used them, though, I didn’t notice or get a photo of them, I’m afraid.

Samantha August 8, 2011 at 7:53 am

Hi Julia,
I’m one of the many who asked you for photos of this appartment – I love it!
Thanks so much for featuring it.

Janell Beals August 8, 2011 at 8:04 am

I’m always amused by that discrepancy in movies, between the work they do and the home they have! But it is the movies after all!! Janell

Ricki Jill Treleaven August 8, 2011 at 8:16 am

I remember liking the apartment when I saw the movie…and to think that Carrie Bradshaw is a neighbor! *nice*

Karena August 8, 2011 at 8:40 am

I have not seen the movie if you can believe it! I will now though.

Love the apartment!

PS I adore Linda Lavin!!


Art by Karena

black eyed susans kitchen August 8, 2011 at 9:15 am

I didn’t see the movie (now I will) but love Alex O’Loughlin… he is in Hawaii Five-O isn’t he? I like the mid-century modern chandelier in the dining room.

hookedonhouses August 8, 2011 at 9:20 am

That’s right–I forgot to mention that. Just added it–thanks! :-)

Amanda @ Serenity Now August 8, 2011 at 9:25 am

Haven’t seen that one yet. I haven’t like many JLo movies, but I love her on American Idol! :) Seeing the NYC brownstone just makes me smile. :)

Janice Mahon August 8, 2011 at 10:00 am

I check daily into the Brooklyn NYC website An interesting site if you are interested in old Brooklyn architecture, and brownstones and co-ops that are on the market. Let’s see, if I had between two and three million, I might be living in Brooklyn!

hookedonhouses August 8, 2011 at 11:45 am

Great site–thanks, Janice!

Beverly from Montreal August 9, 2011 at 6:20 am

And thank you, Julia, for posting the link to ‘On the Set New York’. This will be a site I will be visiting often as I am hooked on movies that are shot in NYC.

Robin August 8, 2011 at 10:26 am

I love Hollywood’s unrealistic professions vs standard of living! The sets would be so boring if they were more realistic.

ps – now that you have provided the link for NYC Film Locations, I can kiss the rest of my day goodbye…

Kim August 8, 2011 at 10:47 am

I don’t think there is two fireplaces in the dining room. I think the blue fireplace you could see in that shot is actually the breakfast bar. You can see the bar stool as well as the handles. :) Great post as always Julia!

hookedonhouses August 8, 2011 at 11:00 am

I could have sworn there was a blue fireplace in there, too, but I just checked again and I think you’re right! Thanks for pointing that out, Kim. -Julia

Rhianna August 8, 2011 at 11:45 am

I really liked the movie, I only rented it because Alex O’Loughlin was in it ( I love him in Hawaii 5-0). I was so glad I did because I also fell in love with the apartment.

Can’t wait to see your post on The Ugly Truth. I’m sure it will have some good info.
A while back I posted pics of the apartment from The Ugly Truth. I love that apt. too!

Bre August 8, 2011 at 11:49 am

Great Movie Monday post, Julia! I loved Jennifer’s home in this movie, and I too was obsessed with her headboard. I have a thing about headboards, I don’t know why. (I love her headboard and Carrie and Big’s headboard in the second S&TC movie). I love her kitchen and both her fireplaces. This movie was actually kind of cute, if predictable. Love the pic of him reading to the twins-so sweet! :)

P.S. Of course you know I loved her makeup in this movie, that goes without saying! haha

Neesha August 8, 2011 at 12:53 pm

She looked gorgeous in this movie and I loved her outfits too. Yup, definitely wanna know how much her character made annually LOL

Kim August 8, 2011 at 1:37 pm

Great movie post! When you first asked if the exterior looked familiar, I immediately thought of “The Cosby Show”, but both exteriors are different.

I have not seen this movie, but the sets look very nice. The apartment looks like it would be a comfortable place to live.

Autumn VanWeir August 8, 2011 at 1:52 pm

I was NOT a fan of this film (c’mon JLo! You’re a romcom whiz! What happened?) but what a gorgeous apartment!!

Lindsay August 8, 2011 at 2:06 pm

I haven’t seen this movie, but the apartment looks very charming and cozy. I especially love the couch! Thanks for posting!

Becky @ Farmgirl Paints August 8, 2011 at 4:32 pm

it was just alright. there was a scene (the birth scene) that had me and my best friend totally cracking up. like you said it was completely unrealistic for a pet shop owner to have an apartment like that…oh and the outfits that she wore didn’t match up either. who needs 3″ heels to run a pet store? love her on idol. hope she comes back!!

Catherine August 8, 2011 at 5:34 pm

I enjoyed this film. That said, it makes me happy to see such a focus on books in the nursery. But I find it difficult to believe that their collection would really be quite that large in just a few months? But then, I don’t have their budget! 😉

Catherine August 8, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Oh, man…I HATE it when people end a statement with a question-mark, so I must clarify that yes, I edited the sentence and then forgot to proof-read. :-s

belledame August 8, 2011 at 8:02 pm

on books: this was set in nyc. totally possible she has friends in publishing who can stuff a box full of copies lying around in ten minutes. i’ve been doing it for my friends for years.

Nita August 8, 2011 at 11:28 pm

I’ve stopped watching movies about unmarried pregnant women. Tiring. But, I like her drapes in the bedroom, the fireplace and the headboard. I want one too. This is not an apt. that any person who worked or maybe even owned an ethical pet store could afford in NYC. These days for sure.

Nita August 8, 2011 at 11:33 pm


I like that brownstone site but not all the photos are loading. I wonder why.

Annabelle August 9, 2011 at 11:24 am

Costco has a pretty similar headboard (minus the accent tacks) on their website. Search for “Napa headboard” and you will find it. Pretty good price too! (Can you tell what I have been shopping around for lately?) Love your blog!

Annabelle August 9, 2011 at 11:31 am

Clarification: Costco’s item that lists just the headboard (not headboard and bed) actually has “nail button trim” and you can see it in a detail. The bed item doesn’t list it or have a detail of it.

Katy August 9, 2011 at 2:00 pm

I think the headboard is a mitchell+gold item…

check it out…

Love their stuff!

hookedonhouses August 9, 2011 at 3:45 pm

I think you’re right, Katy–it looks like the same one! Thanks!!

Lesley @ The Design File August 10, 2011 at 10:06 pm

Didn’t see the movie but love your post about the apartment – as always. Very cool. Thanks!

Keris Stainton August 15, 2011 at 4:06 pm

Thank you! I have been saying “Kiss my grits!” for years, but couldn’t remember where I’d got it from. Alice. Of course! :)

Fatemeh May 31, 2012 at 2:42 am

Thanks a lot
I am an architect and Iwas searching for several days after watching the movie for the apartment facade cause it was so beutifull.
thanks a lot for your helpfull information

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