Location Scout Resource: New York City, NY – 2
is a continuation of another location scout resource post of information and news about the City of New York, including all five boros of Brooklyn, Bronx, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island. This post will be updated on an ongoing basis.
Please also see: Location Scout Resource: New York City
59th St – Queensboro Bridge (Mis-id’d as Williamsburg Bridge!)
The photo is by Danny Lyon, photographed for Environmental Protection Agency, Project DOCUMERICA and it is in the public domain.
click on the photo itself to be automagically transported to the photo’s Flickr page, which contains signicantly more (mis?)information about the photograph.
The photo above is misidentified as being the Williamsburg Bridge. A location scout ALWAYS knows the difference! 😉 The giveaway is the Empire State Building in the background.
Here is the REAL Williamsburg Bridge:
Location Scout Spotlight: Manhattan cityscape skyline, New York, NY
Hardly anyone, leastly a location scout 😉 would argue that New York City has a boring skyline!
What’s very kewl too is there are lots and lots of places to view the NYC skyline from many angles.
NYC Rooftops and Views contains some examples of some great cityscape locations available for film, photo, video and events.
Location Scout Gallery: New York City Holiday Fisheyes
– On a sunny clear December day, I was location scouting in Manhattan and shot these fisheyes.
Rockefeller Center is a complex of 19 commercial buildings covering 22 acres (89,000 m2) between 48th and 51st streets in New York City, United States. Built by the Rockefeller family, it is located in the center of Midtown Manhattan, spanning the area between Fifth Avenue and Sixth Avenue. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1987.
Times Square is a major commercial intersection in the borough of Manhattan in New York City, at the junction of Broadway and Seventh Avenue and stretching from West 42nd to West 47th Streets. The extended Times Square area, also called the Theatre District, consists of the blocks between Sixth and Eighth Avenues from east to west, and West 40th and West 53rd Streets from south to north, making up the western part of the commercial area of Midtown Manhattan.
The New York City Fire Department or the Fire Department of the City of New York (FDNY) has the responsibility for protecting the citizens and property of New York City’s five boroughs from fires and fire hazards, providing emergency medical services, technical rescue as well as providing first response to biological, chemical and radioactive hazards. The department has its headquarters in 9 MetroTech Center, Downtown Brooklyn, and its training academy (The FDNY Fire Academy) on Randall’s Island.
Location Scout Spotlight: Hudson River Park in New York City
Hudson River Park, the longest waterfront park in the United States, has transformed five miles of decaying piers and parking lots along Manhattan’s West side into a beloved, urban recreational paradise. Attracting 17 million visits each year, the Park offers a myriad of recreational and educational activities for local residents and visitors alike, and plays a critical role in protecting the Hudson River environment itself.
- Location Scouts: Filming Permit Info
A whole swath of new park space opened up this past week on the Hudson River Park between Laight Street and Houston Street, just south of Pier 40. Here’s a link to Google Maps which shows the location.
Location Scout HighLine Park, West Chelsea, New York City, New York
About the HighLine:
The High Line is located on Manhattan’s West Side. It runs from Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District to 34th Street, between 10th & 11th Avenues. Section 1 of the High Line, which opened to the public on June 9, 2009, runs from Gansevoort Street to 20th Street. …read more…
These photos were made around the 20th Street Access
Other HighLine Accesses include:
- Gansevoort Street
- 14th Street (elevator access)
- 16th Street (elevator access)
- 18th Street
The HighLine’s origin, The West Side Elevated Highway, is a rich part of New York City’s history
Location Scout Resource – New York Studios
Unordered list of links to New York City film studio resources:
- List of New York City television and film studios (Wikipedia)
- WorkBook PhoneBook: Studio and Stage Rental / New York City
- BizBash New York Venues > Lofts/Photo Studios/Raw Spaces
- BlackBook Studios, Sound Stages, Locations
- NYPG Stages / TV Studios
- MPE.net Stage Rentals
- Google Search – “New York Film Studios”
old quote from old article:
P3 Update – New York Studios: “Without question, 2005 will be celebrated as a year of extraordinary success in New York’s film industry. Producers and location managers are quick to credit this success as two fold: the new tax incentive and the support of major studios located within the city.”(offline)
Television Production Studios – Backstage / Ross Reports | Television Production Studios | Television Production Facilities | Television Studios and Offices
The following are Los Angeles and New York production facilities that produce for television
Location Scout Resource: Brooklyn – Queens Expressway (BQE)
The nyc.locationscout.us header photograph (also shown below) depicts part of the elevated roadway section of the Brooklyn – Queens Expressway (BQE or I-278) from ground level along northern Hamilton Avenue in Brooklyn that follows underneath the route of the BQE for a distance as they both snake thru Brooklyn, NY.
On a recent location scouting assignment that included the adventure of driving multiple times all over many sections of Brooklyn and Queens, while passing by the area shown (as well as other sections of the BQE viewable from underneath), I was somehow taken the by the graphic juxtaposition of the graceful curve(s) of the road the BQE creates as it meanders along overhead and enormity of the trusses against the general grittiness and otherwise nondescript “ordinariness” of the many industrial areas underneath the BQE.* For me, the drizzly, gray, overcast day adds to the moodiness and melancholy – but I would love to have an opportunity to go back on a clear day, maybe a very late afternoon or early morning – maybe there are long streaks of sunlight that come streaming thru the trusses and create patterns of light and shadow on the environment below?
*The necessary cropping of the header photo from the original does little highlight these features – I believe the original composition illustrates it much better, so the original is included below:
The BQE roadway up top is what you would expect on a major thoroughfare thru a very large city – multiple lanes and possible potholes, not as rough as that icon of bad road, BQE’s evil sister, the Cross Bronx Expressway – at various times traffic (usually) moving at a brisk pace, during which there will be the usual hot-doggers and tail-gaters, other times slowed to a crawl such as in the thick of weekday rush hours, accidents, construction or “police activity”. …lots of photos taken along the BQE…
From a location scout’s or a filmmaker’s point of view, my synopsis of the BQE would be, “urban, gritty, iconic New York City outer boros or ‘Manhattan-from-a-distance’ (some very impressive skyline views of Manhattan can be experienced while travelling on the elevated sections of the BQE…)”; you see more rooftops of 3-4 story buildings typical of many residential areas of New York City (which, if you didn’t know, includes the 5 boros of Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island…) than you can shake a stick at – ..”tar beaches“, boiler / furnace vents, all manner of rickety – looking tv antennae of every size cocked at every angle, satellite dishes, power and telephone wires, items tossed onto the roofs and forgotten about: shoes, soft drink cans / bottles, items of clothing, balls, etc… all of course covered with layers of soot and grime from oil furnaces and the daily exhaust of thousands of automobiles and trucks passing by…
From a production logistics point of view, other than low or non-impact vehicle-to-vehicle “running shots” or vehicle-to-environment (typically establishing shots or b-roll), actually filming on the BQE would seem to be a proposition that, while not necessarily impossible would likely be met initially with some hesitance by the many entities likely to be required to cooperate and assist, all the way from U.S. Department of Transportation (the BQE (I-278) is a spur of interstate highway I-78 and therefore under federal jurisdiction…) to likely the New York State Department of Transportation, New York City Department of Transportation, New York State Police, definitely the New York State Film Office, New York City Mayor’s Office of Film, Theater and Broadcast (MOFTB) and probably New York City Police Department Special Operations / TV / Movie Unit (if for no other reason than to possibly coordinate local traffic on city streets with regard to exits / on-ramps to / from the BQE on-ramp / exit ramps to / from local city streets). …and this is probably not a complete list…
If allowed at all, filming would likely be required to occur on a day or night of lowest anticipated vehicle traffic and impact on day-to-day normal activity, i.e. perhaps a very early Sunday morning or “apres” hours late evening and filming would likely need to be coordinated to allow one or more lanes of traffic to be either open at all times or quickly opened as needed so as to allow traffic to pass thru or around the set periodically – no filmmaker, photographer, producer or location manager should ever dream they are going to completely “own” a stretch of high volume interstate / inner city expressway for any extended length of time.
Suggestion: allow plenty of lead time for preproduction – expect lots of film permits and paperwork, hire the best location manager and location scouts you can find, be prepared to make lots of concessions in the interest of the welfare of the general public… and – oh, yeah… – bring a checkbook 😉
At least one feature film is mentioned prominently as featuring the BQE – 1990’s Quick Change:
Motorists may encounter difficulity finding an entrance onto the BQE from Brooklyn side streets, as illustrated in the 1990 movie, Quick Change, starring Bill Murray. Murray and his cohorts escape from their Manhattan bank robbery in their getaway car, only to take the wrong turn from the BQE — they are unable to get back on. Murray finds a sign reading “To I-278,” but the arrow at the bottom of the sign rotates around, and around. The Brooklyn Queens Expressway is infamous for rush hour traffic congestion.
Original graphic from Wikimedia Commons
Additional Location Scout Resource: Brooklyn – Queens Expressway Linkage:
More Art Galleries Than You Can Shake a Stick At
I like the way Chelsea Art Galleries presents their database street – by street.
greg.org: Location Scouting NYC’s Alleys: Location Scouting NYC’s Alleys
The Times has an enjoyable story, ‘Creepy Space, With Rats, Just $10,000 a Day’ about the recurring popularity among film and TV producers of the few photogenic alleys in Manhattan. But the story doesn’t hold up and even misses the point, but not because the $10k location fee turns out to be blustery indie producer hearsay or because it lacks data of production that the Mayor’s Film & TV Office could provide with a phone call.
On greg.org, I document my filmmaking and writing projects, which currently include a series of documentary-style shorts, an animated musical, and a couple of feature film scripts.
Both tourists and professional location scouts should be able to find uses for DigiNewYork and it’s big fun to browse thru aerial views of New York’s (and the world’s) most famous places and read bits about each of them, mostly excerpted from Wikipedia.
Fellow location scout Mark McKennon and I recently had the opportunity to tour Lightbox-NY, a 10,000 sf rental studio / industrial location in the Bronx, on Barretto Street, in the Hunts Point area, in the building complex I have always known the Bronx Apparel Center.
Lightbox-NY opened this past year and is owned and operated by local NYC location scout legends David Appleson and Carl Bellavia.
The space is unique in that it fills (at least a part of…) a current shortage of shoot-ready industrial aesthetic film locations in the New York City area. The space features a “raw” industrial interior with large, factory-typical windows and skylights as well as an accessible rooftop which includes a unique graphic element of the skylight’s shapes and the Bronx as a cityscape backdrop. Additionally, Lightbox-NY provides 10,000 sf more of production-wired raw studio space with potential for use as a propped, built-set sound stage for the local film production market.
Best wishes and good luck to David and Carl on their venture and hopes we might have an opportunity to shoot at their space sometime soon! -RH
Lightbox-NY – 841 Barretto St, Bronx, NY – 718-759-6419
Location Scout Resource: Great Places Directory | New York | Paul Rudolph House
There are several resources I use regularly especially for researching event venue locations, such as BizBash and Locations Magazine but I was not familiar with the Great Places Directory till I stumbled onto a link to it on the New York City MOFTB website this morning.
I already found one location I was not previously familiar with, the Paul Rudolph House in midtown Manhattan on East 58th St. Paul Rudolph was an architect of some merit famous for a modern, minimalist style of architecture. The house on 58th St appears to currently operate as a showroom for Modulightor designer lighting and home to Paul Rudolph Foundation (PRF). PRF website states that the house is available as an event venue and although I havent checked, presumably (or at least hopefully 😉 , the house is available as a possible film or photo location as well.
- Slightly off-topic, but interesting (to me 😉 … …according to Wikipedia…
Location Scout Spotlight: Terminal Five at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City
T5 was designed by Eero Saarinen in 1962 for TWA Airlines, had been vacant since 2001 and was a popular airport location for filming; recently JetBlue has moved its headquarters there and T5’s current status as a viable film location is unclear.
The TWA Flight Center or Trans World Flight Center, opened in 1962 as a standalone terminal at New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) for Trans World Airlines. It was designed by Eero Saarinen.
Portions of the original complex have been demolished, and the Saarinen terminal (or head house) has been renovated, partially encircled by and serving as a ceremonial entrance to a new adjacent terminal completed in 2008. Together, the old and new buildings comprise JetBlue Airways’ JFK operations and are known collectively as Terminal 5 or simply T5.
The City of New York designated both the interiors and the exteriors of the Saarinen terminal a historic landmark in 1994 and in 2005 the National Park Service listed the Trans World Flight Center on the National Register of Historic Places.
While noted architect Robert A.M. Stern called the evocative Saarinen-designed TWA Flight Center “Grand Central of the jet age”, the pragmatic new encircling terminal has been called “hyper-efficient” and a “monument to human throughput”.
Location Scout Resource: Warriors
Made in NYC, baby!
To coincide with today’s release of the Ultimate Director’s Cut of The Warriors on DVD, we’re giving you a director’s cut, web-exclusive version of the “Oral History Of The Warriors” piece by editor Eric Ducker, which originally ran last year in F26. Can you dig it? Can you diiiiig iiiiit?!
Location Scout Spotlight: Watchmen: A Mysterious Discovery in New York
New York, NY 2/2007:
…The (location) scout tells us that the tunnel and chamber was once a spur of a forgotten subway, an underground maintenance area for the cars, built in the 1920’s. In 1955, the tunnel suffered a collapse that flooded this section of the system, and the lower portions of the track were abandoned. 100 yards from the repair yard the tunnel now opens up directly to the East River.
Watchmen is a 2009 film adaptation of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ comic book limited series of the same name, directed by Zack Snyder. The film stars Patrick Wilson, Jackie Earle Haley, Malin Akerman, Billy Crudup, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Matthew Goode, Stephen McHattie and Carla Gugino. Set in 1985, the film follows a group of former vigilantes as war begins to break out between the United States and the Soviet Union. The film began shooting in Vancouver in September 2007 for release on March 6, 2009. Like his previous film 300, Snyder closely modeled his storyboards on the comic, but unlike 300, he chose not to shoot all of Watchmen using chroma key.
Location Scout Spotlight: The Chrysler Building, 405 Lexington Avenue New York, NY 10174
The Chrysler Building in New York City is of interest to any location scout. It is a NYC icon, after all!
I actually got to location scout the lobby of the Chrysler Building one time for Escada – before the request was turned down. I talked to them one other time trying to get permission to shoot there for a magazine cover about a young entrepreneur – that got shot down too!
Chrysler Building – Wikipedia
The Chrysler Building is an Art Deco style skyscraper in New York City, located on the east side of Manhattan in the Turtle Bay area at the intersection of 42nd Street and Lexington Avenue. At 1,046 feet (319 m), the structure was the world’s tallest building for 11 months before it was surpassed by the Empire State Building in 1931. It is still the tallest brick building in the world, albeit with an internal steel skeleton. After the destruction of the World Trade Center, it was again the second-tallest building in New York City until December 2007, when the spire was raised on the 1,200-foot (365.8 m) Bank of America Tower, pushing the Chrysler Building into third position. In addition, The New York Times Building, which opened in 2007, is exactly level with the Chrysler Building in height. Both buildings were then pushed into 4th position, when the under construction One World Trade Center surpassed their height.
The Chrysler Building is a classic example of Art Deco architecture and considered by many contemporary architects to be one of the finest buildings in New York City. In 2007, it was ranked ninth on the List of America’s Favorite Architecture by the American Institute of Architects. It was the headquarters of the Chrysler Corporation from 1930 until the mid-1950s, but, although the building was built and designed specifically for the car manufacturer, the corporation did not pay for the construction of it and never owned it, as Walter P. Chrysler decided to pay for it himself, so that his children could inherit it.
Location Scout News: Wall Street Journal | Abu Dhabi Fund Acquires Most of Chrysler Building Deal for 90% Stake In New York Icon Bucks Weak Market
By ALEX FRANGOS | July 10, 2008
Location Scout Spotlight: Seagram Building 50th Anniversary
Marketwatch | Landmark Seagram Building Celebrates 50 Years | One of New York City’s Biggest Celebrities – 38 Stories Tall and a City Block Wide – Is Showing Great Form on Its Milestone Anniversary | NEW YORK, NY, Aug 26, 2008 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX) | via Google Alerts
The Seagram Building, looking every bit as elegant and refined as the day it opened in 1958, remains the embodiment of its architect’s famous observation that “less is more.” Also known for its supporting roles in major movies and television shows over the last half-century, this svelte, bronze beauty ranks at the top of Manhattan’s architectural Pantheon along with other monumental icons like the Empire State Building, Flatiron Building and Chrysler Building.