Those who have travelled with me know that I like to work in visits to real world movie and television filming locations onto the itinerary. And such side trips have taken me from places like Cincinnati’s Fountain Square as seen in the opening to the classic sitcom WKRP In Cincinnati to the Tribecca firehouse that serves as the headquarters of the Ghostbusters.
The blog ScoutingNY has not only been a wonderful site highlighting the great and stunning architecture that Manhattan and its environs have to offer, but it has also been a great resource for finding sites that have previously been used in various films. The past two weeks, the blog has been taking a tour of New York City’s five boroughs, tracking down the locations of Woody Allen’s quintessential romantic comedy about New York, Annie Hall in which he starred with Diane Keaton.
Allen is well known for his use of the city as his own personal backlot, and this two part article is a great trip back in time to how the city looked in the 1970s. As location shooting traps sites in cinematic amber, this trip highlights the contrasts the changes three-and-a-half decades has brought. We can see where neighborhood movie theaters and Cooney island roller coasters have disappeared. Changes run from the cosmetic updates to the Central Park Zoo to a bookseller that now houses a Prada store. Perhaps more amazing is how some of the little things like street blocks, store fronts and even park benches have remained same.
It’s a fascinating read if you’re a Woody Allen fan or just planning on a trip to Manhattan and want to see some sites that aren’t your usual tourist destinations.