“Well there’s something you don’t see every day”
New York feels as much a main character in the film Ghostbusters as Venkman, Spengler and Co. in my opinion. The city provides an energy and grounding to the story – what begins as a group of frustrated scientists capturing all manner of strange and freaky ghosts becomes a desperate mission to save all of New York from Gozer the Destroyer! I have fond memories of being scared by the film when I was probably too young to have watched it. The library poltergeist and Dana’s apartment haunting particularly stuck in my memory. It was great to re-watch it before a trip to the Big Apple last year and locations from the film were high on the ‘to do’ list.
We ticked off the three main locations; the Firehouse, Dana’s Apartment and Central Library. There were many more we could have included but we quickly realised when planning trip that we couldn’t do and see everything. A more detailed breakdown of all the locations from the film can be found here; http://onthesetofnewyork.com/ghostbusters.html
Interestingly I’ve realised that I’m probably more familiar with Ghostbusters through the animated series ‘The Real Ghostbusters’ and the toy range that accompanied it despite never having any of them! Ah, the brainwashing of an 80’s child!
Iconic is a fair word to use for this building which is still a functioning fire station. Its future has been secured by a recently completed multimillion dollar refurbishment (it now has ladies loos) and with a fresh coat of paint it’s never looked better. The fire crew adopted the Ghostbusters logo as their emblem and there’s a large version painted on the floor. It was interesting the observe how many people wandered past and stopped to grab a few photos in the brief time we were there – it’s not a main tourist area and it’s not somewhere you’d find yourself casually passing, you have to go find it.
On the edge of Central Park is Dana’s apartment building (extended higher in the film) but recognisable, 55 Central Park West. There’s the church next to it which gets flattened by the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. We also wandered up to Columbus Circle and retraced the path of destruction.
I really love this library, it’s a proper grand civic building, and ridiculously over embellished. The main library section is split into two – one side the general public can wander in and take pictures amongst the readers. The other half has an attendant where you presumably have to show a pass to get in. It’s the only building were security search your bags on the way in and the way out – are they just checking that you’ve not nicked a book or two?
“We came, we saw, we kicked its ass!”
Bonus location – outside of the Central Library is were Spiderman’s Uncle Ben gets shot! Proof that with great locations comes great filming opportunities!