Of all the cities in the world, New York is surely the one that has provided the backdrop to more films than any other. From the work of Martin Scorsese to inspiring the Gotham City of the Batman franchise, it’s a place that can genuinely be described as iconic.
Visit today and you’ll still find many film crews making movies and TV series in which the city’s almost as important as the characters themselves. Touring round the places you’ve only ever seen on screen is also a great way to spend at least some of your time in NYC - so here’s our guide to five of the most interesting.
Anyone who’s ever been to Times Square will know what a frantically busy place it is at any time of the day or night, alive with tourists illuminated by the bright neon advertising hoardings, and lined with shops that never seem to close. So when the 2001 Tom Cruise movie Vanilla Sky needed to shoot a scene with only Cruise’s character running around in the entire square, the film-makers arranged to close off the whole square on a Sunday.
You’ll find some of Manhattan’s most expensive and exclusive apartments on Park Avenue that runs along the eastern side of Central Park – but that didn’t stop the stars of 2012 Marvel blockbuster Avengers Assemble from using it as the scene of devastation as they battled to prevent an alien invasion. Although most of the effects were obviously added using CGI it still provided a very dramatic backdrop to the action.
This is a legendary West Side deli near the intersection of Broadway and West 80th Street which tops the list of many NY movie location lists. It featured in You’ve Got Mail, Nora Ephron’s follow-up to When Harry Met Sally – itself made famous for an unforgettable scene that took place in Katz’s Deli much further downtown. Zabar’s also appeared in Woody Allen’s Manhattan. In fact you could probably spend a whole holiday visiting the New York locations which have taken star billing in the many films Allen has made in the city.
Tiffany and Co
There’s no end of top-dollar jewellery stores in New York but undoubtedly the most famous is Tiffany and Co which you’ll find where 5th Avenue and 57th Avenue meet. Unsurprisingly, the film that features it a great deal is 1961’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s. This took Truman Capote’s rather darker novel and turned it into a light romantic comedy starring Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard.
Gramercy Park Hotel
Near to the famous landmark of the Flatiron Building and Union Square, the Gramercy Park Hotel featured heavily in the 2000 film Almost Famous. Patrick Fugit plays an aspiring music writer who managed to land an assignment to interview a rock band for ‘Rolling Stone’ magazine. Many of his meetings with the band took place in the hotel.
Look online and you’ll find several websites showing these, and many other famous NY film locations to visit – and if you want to fit them all in to your break why not hire a car?