It’s only fitting that “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” star Alexis Bledel is wearing a stylish salmon-colored dress for an interview rather than blue jeans. After all, the pretty, blue-eyed Houston native is no longer a teen.
Bledel, 28, is all grown up. Following a seven-year run on the popular TV series “Gilmore Girls,” playing a precocious teenager and the “Traveling Pants” adventures aimed at the high school crowd, she matriculated to the working world in “Post Grad” last year.
Now, in the independent pseudo-romantic comedy “The Good Guy,” she’s a full-fledged working Manhattanite with a good job, a place of her own and independence.
Then she meets a guy named Tommy (Scott Porter), who initially seems like ideal boyfriend material. He’s good looking. He’s smart. He has a high-paying job on Wall Street, where he is a hotshot hedge fund manager.
(It should be noted that “The Good Guy” was made just as the financial markets were starting to collapse, and though some adjustments were made in the script to reflect the financial crisis, the film has somewhat of a nostalgic, pre-recession feel to it.)
Complications arise when Beth meets Tommy’s handsome co-worker, Daniel (Bryan Greenberg). Daniel is less worldly and savvy than Tommy, but he also seems to be more in tune with Beth’s emotional needs and interests.
Bledel, her long brown hair swept back in a tight bun, says she can relate in some ways to her character. As a transplanted New Yorker, she is aware of the struggles young women face there, balancing career and relationships.
“It’s a comment of sort on modern life, if not modern love,” she says of the film, written and directed by first time filmmaker Julio DePietro.
“There are a lot of little moments in it that feel more realistic than your average movie with a romantic storyline,” she adds.
For starters, Tommy is a sociopath, carrying on relationships with multiple women simultaneously while pretending to be monogamous with each of them. It’s only a matter of time before Beth discovers Tommy’s true colors. In the meantime, she develops a friendship with kindhearted Daniel, who shares her fondness for reading and traveling.
Once she finds out about Tommy’s infidelity, Beth doesn’t lash out. Instead, she simply tells him, “I feel sorry for you.”
DePietro says Bledel had the hardest job in the movie, having to first sell a budding romance with Tommy; developing an attraction with Daniel, then convincing people she had the integrity not to act on the new romance until she discovered Tommy’s lies.
“It’s a lot to ask somebody to do in 90 minutes but she did it,” compliments DePietro, who worked at an investment firm before turning to filmmaking.
Bledel, who attended NYU Film School, made her television debut in the critically acclaimed series “Gilmore Girls,” a dramedy about a close-knit relationship between a single mother and a savvy daughter. She played Rory Gilmore for seven seasons, earning kudos for her depiction of a modern teen, including two Teen Choice Awards.
She made her feature film debut in 2002 in Disney’s “Tuck Everlasting,” in which she played a free-spirited teen trapped in the repressed Victorian household.
Starring alongside America Ferrara, Blake Lively and Amber Tamblyn, she embarked on “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants,” and its sequel. Both movies, depicting the adventures of four friends who despite their various body types share a magical pair of jeans, were box office hits. Her role as the sweet but independent-minded Lena only boosted her profile with young women, who saw her as a role model.
Bledel, though, insists she’s hung up her “Traveling Pants” for good.
Bledel’s next move is to step back in time for Robert Redford’s historical drama, “The Conspirator,” based on the true story about the only woman arrested in the plot to kill President Abraham Lincoln. In it, she plays Sarah Weston, wife of the attorney (James McAvoy) appointed to represent accused conspirator Mary Surratt, played by Robin Wright.