‘Garden State’: Behind-the-Scenes Facts About the 2004 Zach Braff Movie

by Jeremy Spirogis
Zach Braff, director of Garden State

Zach Braff’s directorial debut, the film that may flip 16 years previous this summer season, is the cult basic Garden State. A well-acted, perfectly-soundtracked comedy is well-worth a rewatch — particularly if you happen to’re a fan of Scrubs. Braff each directed and wrote Garden State, pulling from a few of his personal experiences to put in writing the script. Here are another enjoyable information concerning the 2004 film and its forged.

How Zach Braff, Natalie Portman, and the remainder of the forged of ‘Garden State’ ready for his or her roles

Zach Braff, director of Garden State
Zach Braff, author/director of Garden State | Debra L Rothenberg/FilmMagic

In Garden State, Zach Braff stars as the primary character Andrew Largeman. He’s a New Jersey native who lives in Los Angeles, however returns to his household dwelling after his mom passes away. While the subject material is darkish, the film is alive with comedy and romance, and it was an early-2000s favourite within the movie trade.

According to IMDb, there are a number of fascinating behind-the-scenes items of trivia.

To develop the character of Largeman — in addition to the protagonist’s mother and father — Braff was influenced by his mother and father. Braff’s mother and stepfather are each psychologists, and his stepmother is a therapist. All of this information knowledgeable the scenes concerning the Garden State character’s psychological state.

In addition, whereas “Natalie Portman was writer and director Zach Braff’s first choice for the role of Sam … [Braff] never thought he would get her.” (It’s onerous to think about every other actress within the function, so we’re glad that labored out.)


The depiction of Andrew Largeman (Zach Braff) working in a Vietnamese restaurant was from Braff’s personal expertise. He labored as a waiter in a French-Vietnamese restaurant when he auditioned for the main half within the sequence Scrubs (2001).

On the Garden State DVD commentary, Portman additionally revealed that in actual fact, she had no expertise with document gamers.

“She had to be taught how to start a vintage record player properly for the scene in her bedroom,” IMDb reported.

Peter Sarsgaard additionally needed to study a brand new ability for the film. The actor didn’t know how one can play guitar, so he needed to study it for Garden State.

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‘Garden State’, directed by Zach Braff, is understood for its soundtrack

The Garden State soundtrack, which greater than stands the take a look at of time, was additionally a sequence of selections Braff made from the start.

“When Zach Braff sent the script to people, he would also send them a copy of the songs which would eventually be the soundtrack (which he handpicked),” IMDb reported.

The music that performs throughout Andrew’s dream — the scene early within the film wherein the airplane goes down — comes from “a Ganesh alarm clock.”

“The words are a prayer song to the Hindu god,” the Trivia web page explains.

New Jersey, the Garden State, and Los Angeles offered the settings for the 2004 film

Also, Garden State initially had a distinct title. Per IMDb, “Zach Braff wrote nearly all of the script whereas he was in school, and initially titled it Large’s Ark.” However, after testing the title, he discovered higher outcomes with Garden State.

Garden State castGarden State cast
Zach Braff, Natalie Portman, and Peter Sarsgaard on the Garden State Los Angeles Premiere | Chris Weeks/WireImage

According to IMDb, getting the ultimate shot within the airport was one thing of an impediment.

Zach Braff needed to give a testimonial to JFK International Airport with a view to movie there. His testimonial was about how a lot he favored Terminal 4, the terminal used to movie the ultimate scenes of the film.

However, one of many early scenes in Garden State was filmed in LA. Out of character for the town, LA didn’t have sufficient visitors for Braff. According to IMDb:

Production had three vehicles decelerate in every lane to 10 miles per hour on I-405 to create the essence of Los Angeles visitors, as a result of Zach Braff thought there wasn’t sufficient visitors for the shot.

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