NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 15: Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell at New York Comic Con at Javits Center on October 15, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Catherine Powell/Getty Images for for Paramount+)

Stars in Rhode Island? Is Rhode Island the NEW Hollywood? Push over Hocus Pocus 2. There’s some NEW magic in town!

What do Saturday Night Live’s Kenan Thompson, Kel Mitchell, Gronk, Pete Davidson, Leslie Jones and more have in common? They were ALL in Rhode Island this year to film Good Burger 2. 

Good Burger MOVIE Franchise

It’s not a burger franchise. The original 1997 movie starring former Nickelodeon stars Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell got it’s start as a skit on the Nick show All That. The story follows a high school student (Thompson) that takes a job at a fast food joint. He needs money to pay off the damages he made to his teachers car. He and his dim-witted co-worker (Mitchell) stumble upon an evil plot by a rival restaurant to put Good Burger out of business.  With an $8 million dollar budget, the original movie was created, making over $23 million at the box office, despite mixed reviews.

Good Burger 2

After a 2015 Jimmy Fallon skit with Kenan and Kel recreating the original movie, talk began to create a sequel. It took awhile, but talks continued in 2018. Add in a cult following, Good Burger 2 was created, and now streaming on Paramount. The new movie follows Thompson’s down and out Dex, who ends up working back at Good Burger with Ed, who, not surprisingly, stills works there twenty six years later.  What’s exciting about this is that the much of the movie was filmed right in our own backyard, with a heartwarming, local family story.

Hollywood Loves Rhode Island

What makes this special is that much of Good Burger 2 was filmed at the location of a Friendly’s in North Providence. The Friendly’s location is owned by the family of Rhode Island actress and friend, Debbie Rich.

Debbie shared with me:

As background, I can tell you that the site was bought by my grandpa for the family bakery in the 60s and it closed in 1973.  We signed a 40 year lease with Friendly’s in 1984 and they stayed for 35 until 2019.  It’s due to be sold. The building is to be demolished so this opportunity gave my family a chance to memorialize it on film. 

Debbie says that all of the stars listed above came to the North Providence location to film their scenes. Other Rhode Island locations used were Aldrich Mansion in Warwick, and New England Tech. A concert scene in movie was filmed at The Strand.

Debbie was kind enough to share some pictures from the set of Good Burger 2. So let’s see some stars in Rhode Island!

  • This Was A Friendly's!

    Good Burger

    Image by Debbie Rich

    This was an original Friendly’s in North Providence that was transformed into a “Good Burger” for the movie Good Burger 2. 

    I have had many Friendly’s breakfasts there, when it was Friendly’s!

  • Fake Palm Trees!

    Good Burger

    Image By Debbie Rich

    This was a wall created in the parking lot at the Rhode Island Friendly’s/Good Burger 2, set. That’s Debbie in the picture.

    By the way, the palm trees are fake!! They are in small pots and elevated.

  • Hollywood Transforms Friendly's!

    Good Burger

    Image by Debbie Rich

    Thanks to the carpenters, a Friendly’s is now a Good Burger! 


  • Kenan Thompson With Some Fans!

    Good Burger

    Image by Debbie Rich

    One of the stars of Good Burger 2, Kenan Thompson poses with Debbie and some excited family (who also own the property) members between takes.

  • Where's Kel?

    Good Burger

    Image by Debbie Rich

    Good Burger 2 co-star Kel Mitchell (right) jumps in!

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