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Bethesda Terrace, a popular spot to congregate in the center of Central Park

New York

New York City Guide to Iconic Movie and TV Locations

By: Idoia Gkikas

Marley White
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  • States:
    New York

Chances are, you’ve seen dozens of movies or television shows featuring or filmed in New York City.

In fact, it’s often considered the most filmed city in the world. Take a tour of these iconic cinematic sites, and relive your cherished film and television moments.

Comedy Classics

The 1984 ghost-comedy favorite “Ghostbusters” was filmed at various locations around Manhattan. Get photos at Columbus Circle, the famous traffic circle where the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man arrives. Then take a walk in Central Park West to have lunch at the posh Tavern on the Green, where actor Rick Moranis is chased by Zuul the dog-monster.

In the Christmas cult comedy “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York” (1992), Kevin (Macaulay Culkin) takes his first taxi ride into Manhattan across the Queensboro Bridge, meets the Pigeon Lady by Gapstow Bridge in Central Park, relaxes in luxury at The Plaza Hotel, and finally reunites with his family in front of the distinctive giant tree at Rockefeller Center. Take a self-guided walking tour of Manhattan to visit the unforgettable sites.

The 1911 Beaux Arts-style flagship building of the New York Public Library

The 1911 Beaux Arts-style flagship building of the New York Public Library
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Joe Buglewicz

Romance Picks

Whether you consider yourself a Carrie or a Charlotte, a Samantha or a Miranda, put on your Manolos and take the “Sex and the City” Hotspots Bus Tour to see more than 40 trendy Manhattan locales – including the famous Magnolia Bakery in the West Village – frequented by the female cast.

Order a pastrami sandwich at Katz’s Deli, a locale made all the more legendary in “that scene” from “When Harry Met Sally” (1989). Enjoy a lakeside lunch, just like Meg Ryan and her girlfriends, at Loeb Boathouse in Central Park, and see where Ryan tells Billy Crystal to “have a nice life” at the Washington Square Arch.

The Audrey Hepburn classic “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” (1961) features multiple New York City landmarks. See the Conservatory Garden and the Bandshell in Central Park, and stop by the New York Public Library to see where Paul professes his love to flighty Holly Golightly. If you’ve got a case of “the mean reds,” go window shopping at Tiffany & Co. on Fifth Avenue.

Shopping at Tiffany’s along East 57th Street in Manhattan

Shopping at Tiffany’s along East 57th Street in Manhattan
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Christopher Postlewaite

Drama Destinations

“The Godfather” (1972) is considered by some to be one of the greatest movies ever made. This acclaimed movie features several scenes filmed around the city. On Staten Island, the classic wedding scene highlights the impressive estate at 110 Longfellow Avenue in the Emerson Hill neighborhood. In Manhattan, the christening scene was shot inside Old St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Mulberry Street in Little Italy, and Genco Olive Oil’s storefront was on nearby Mott Street.

Academy Award-winning “Birdman” (2014) has a few notable filming sites in the city. Edward Norton and Michael Keaton walk in front of the St. James Theatre, where you can catch a Broadway show. Grab a drink at The Rum House in Hotel Edison, where the movie’s bar scenes took place. Of course, you can’t miss the most memorable filming location, Times Square, which Keaton jogs through at night in his underwear!  

Much of Natalie Portman’s dark thriller, “Black Swan” (2010), was filmed in and around Lincoln Center in Manhattan, the renowned home of the Metropolitan Opera, the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and, of course, the New York City Ballet.

New York City’s neon lights shining on Jazz at Lincoln Center

New York City’s neon lights shining on Jazz at Lincoln Center
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Marley White

Getting There

To reach New York City from international destinations, fly into John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in Queens or Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) in nearby Newark, New Jersey.

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