July 22, 2019 History In the News
Famous Movies And TV Shows Filmed In And Around NoMad

Via IMDB

Hollywood may be the film capital of the world, but when it comes to shooting on location, New York City is perhaps the most filmed city in the world. No matter the time of year, be it day or night, you’re likely to run across film or TV crews taking over the streets near one of NYC’s famed landmarks, or even turning your favorite neighborhood pub into a movie set.

The NoMad neighborhood is no exception. Madison Square Park and the surrounding streets have served as a backdrop for dozens of TV shows and movies over the years. In addition, one of NYC’s most iconic buildings, the Flatiron Building, is best viewed from the direction of NoMad, so it’s not uncommon to see crews getting shots of the building from north of the park and Worth Square. The following list is by no means an exhaustive one, but here are a few of the more well-known projects that have filmed in and around the neighborhood in recent years.

Spider-Man (I, II and III)

The blockbuster films most people might associate with NoMad are the three films in the Spider-Man trilogy (shot in 2002, 2004 and 2007, respectively), starring Tobey Maguire as Peter Parker. In that franchise, the Flatiron Building is depicted as the home of the fictional tabloid The Daily Bugle, where Parker frequently tries to sell photos of his alter-ego to its gruff publisher, J. Jonah Jameson, played by J.K. Simmons. (In the comics, The Daily Bugle actually resides at 39th Street and Second Avenue.) Madison Square Park also appears in Spider-Man II, when Parker stops briefly to help a group of schoolchildren.

I Am Legend (2007)

This post-apocalyptic film stars Will Smith as Robert Neville, a scientist who is the only surviving inhabitant of New York City and, from his perspective, possibly the world. This scenario provides opportunities for rare views of NYC depicted in an abandoned, overgrown state. Pay attention, and you’ll spot the Flatiron Building, devoid of life and overrun with weeds, and you may also notice a few corn stalks growing in a weed-infested Madison Square Park.

Hitch (2005)

Another film starring Will Smith, who plays a “date doctor” with an unexpected past, Hitch utilizes the Toy Center at Fifth Avenue and 23rd Street as the workplace of Hitch’s love interest, a gossip columnist named Sara Melas, played by Eva Mendes. You’ll also see a shot of Mendes exiting the 23rd Street Station, supposedly after taking the R train.

The Other Guys

Released in 2010, The Other Guys had an extensive chase scene right here in NoMad.  Chris Rock had a huge ball dropped on his police car on Park Avenue South and 24th Street, then he was chased across town to the Townsend Building (1123 Broadway), where he jumped off the roof. . . sort of (thanks to tricks and daring stunt doubles).

The Adjustment Bureau (2011)

This modern film noir/sci-fi thriller stars Matt Damon and Emily Blunt as love interests being mysteriously hindered by forces beyond this realm. The film includes generous footage shot in and near NoMad, from Madison Square Park itself to the Flatiron Building and surrounding streets at Broadway and West 23rd Street. The MetLife Building at 1 Madison Avenue is serves as the site of the lead character’s apartment.

Mr. Robot (2019)

One of the most recent film sightings in NoMad involves one of television’s most popular shows—the Emmy-winning Mr. Robot starring Rami Malek and Christian Slater. In April 2019, Page Six reports, film crews took over Oscar Wilde at 45 West 27th Street and decorated it for Christmas for a 10-hour shoot with Malek, Slater, and approximately 100 extras. Mr. Robot is currently in production for its fourth and final season.

Honorable Mentions

Of course, the films and shows mentioned above barely scratch the surface; many more productions both large and small have used this neighborhood as a setting for location filming. Here’s a short list of other films and TV shows that have included footage in and around NoMad:

  • Armeggedon
  • Godzilla
  • Sex and the City
  • The Fisher King
  • Big
  • Cradle Will Rock     
  • Mildred Pierce
  • How to Make It in America
  • The Apprentice
  • Weekend at Bernie’s
  • Radio Days
  • The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
  • Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief

If you’re interested in knowing what’s currently filming in NYC, including the occasional project in NoMad, On Location Tours maintains a “What’s Filming Now” blog that lists open film and TV projects each month in NYC and where they are shooting. Be sure to check it out.

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