By Frani Lieberman | October 5, 2015 | People
Justin Theroux walked the red carpet on Saturday night for the ATX Television Festival and the premiere of the hit HBO show The Leftovers, with fellow cast members and his new wife, Jennifer Aniston. From their go-to coffee stops to must-visit vintage shops, here's what Theroux and The Leftovers cast had to say about shooting in Austin and what viewers can expect from the second season.
Amy Brenneman, Justin Theroux, Carrie Coon, Chris Zylka, and Margaret Qualley.
At the end of Season 1, the Garvey family decides to leave Mapleton and relocate to Jarden, a Texas town that proudly suffered zero departures during The Rapture. Texas is a big state, but series cocreator and executive producer Damon Lindelof knew that Austin was the perfect place to film season two. “There’s a quality to this place, there is a variance of scenery,” he said. “You have the cityscape in Austin but also rural parts of Texas. Despite biblical rains and oppressive heat, Austin is the best production experience I’ve ever had.”
McKinney Falls State Park, Moore’s Crossing Bridge, Austin, Lockhart, and surrounding Texas towns were the backdrops for the second season, so The Leftovers cast and crew spent some time getting acclimated to the Lonestar State. “There’s something about the heat here that is so brutal," Theroux said of shooting in Austin. "It really helped feed into our characters.”
When asked about his favorite spots, Theroux rattled off many iconic Austin destinations, from La Condesa to Uchi. He was particularly enamored by all of the vintage shopping along South Congress, and touted Uncommon Objects as a “museum of once upon a time.”
Brenneman didn’t get to say a lot in the first season, where her character Laurie Garvey joined a mysteriously mute cult called the Guilty Remnant. In real life, Brenneman called herself a “word girl,” and joyfully shared her favorite Austin spots. She discovered Jo’s Coffee while at the Saint Cecilia and fell hard for the Belgian Bomber, a sweet coffee concoction. She also frequented Wanderlust Yoga and called out YoStrong, a heated yoga class with weighted sectors, as “serious.”
You’ll see a lot of Jasmin Savoy Brown, who shines as Evie, the free-spirited teenage daughter of the Murphy family, in Season 2. She looked darling in her Gemy Maalouf romper, and, when asked about her favorite Austin eats, she was sheepish to admit that hers was of the hotel food variety. “It’s sounds crazy,“ she said, “[but] the best thing I ate here was the mac and cheese at the Omni Hotel—it was just so creamy.”
When asked about her favorite Austin spots, Coon called out Mi Madres for its crispy beef taco and The Backspace for pizza goodness. But she was most emphatic about her daily coffee shop and said, “I have to give a shout out to Juan Pelota [Cafe], those guys are great.”
Jennifer Aniston did not upstage Theroux, who wore a classic dapper suit and skinny tie. The actress sported a gorgeous black romper and came out on the carpet for a quick hello before letting her hubby have the limelight.
The Leftovers airs at 9 p.m. EST Sundays on HBO. In the words of Damon Lindelof, “Are y’all ready to get your bleakness on?”
photography by Filmmagic/Gary Miller