8 Classic Films Set in New York

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California may be where the film industry took off but it all got its humble start on the east coast. In 1909 Fort Lee, New Jersey became the capital of the film industry when it built its first studio. Mary Pickford got her start in Biograph Studios which was located in the Bronx and Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens is where the Marx Brothers created many of their silent films. Eventually the film industry moved to California and because of its versatility of landscapes and the space available to build massive studio lots, it became the permanent home of Old Hollywood.

But New York was always in the heart of the movie making world and when they figured out how they could use locations in the city and really show the rawness that was life in the city of New York, they shared it on film as many times as they could.

Here is a brief list of classic films that are set in New York. They show the gritty streets, the high fashion of park avenue, the beauty that is Central Park, and the madness that entails living and working here. They share scenes of the city in these films that leave the viewers in complete awe and brings sheer delight. Setting a film in New York allows viewers all over the world to take a peak into one of the most diverse, complex, jam packed cities in the world.

These eight films I selected are some of my personal favorites because of how they shared the excitement of the city and incorporated it into the storylines. There's no other city like New York. It has a flavor all its own. And as the narrator states in The Naked City, "There are eight million stories in the naked city. This has been one of them."

The Naked City (1948)

On the Town (1949)

The Seven Year Itch (1955)

The Apartment (1960)

Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)

Barefoot in the Park (1966)

The Out-of-Towners (1970)

Manhattan (1979)

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