Monthly Archives: December 2008

“Do You Want To Go To Jail? I Meant That Guy!”

img_1443

screenshot317

Another filming location I have been absolutely obsessed with finding for YEARS is the New York restaurant where Jenna hit on the 13 year old boy in fave romantic comedy 13 Going On 30.  Ever since the movie was released four years ago I have been searching New York City streets hoping to find the restaurant featured in the movie, but having absolutely no luck.  And then, just before I left on my recent New York vacation, a light bulb went off in my head and I honestly don’t know why I didn’t think of it sooner!  I enlisted master stalker Mike, from MovieShotsLA, to help me find the location.  And sure enough he did!

13_going_on_30

Literally less than ten minutes after challenging Mike to find the restaurant’s location, he sent me an email with the above photo!  And I just about fell off my chair.  Here I had been searching for this location for FOUR YEARS, even resorting to walking up and down New York streets, screen captures in hand, trying to find it, and he locates it in the space of ten minutes!  The man has a gift!

img_1445

screenshot313

screenshot314

It turns out that the 13 Going On 30  restaurant isn’t actually a restaurant at all, but a clothing store named Phi Boutique  located on a cobblestone street in SoHo’s Cast Iron Historic District.  My initial thought was that maybe a restaurant occupied Phi’s space back in 2003 when the filming of 13 Going On 30 took place, but after speaking to a Phi saleswoman earlier today I learned that that wasn’t actually the case.  Before Phi took over the space at 71 Greene Street in 2004, it was occupied by clothing boutique Vivienne Westwood.  Since no restaurant was ever located on the premises, my best guess is that 13 Going On 30  used the vacant storefront for filming in late 2003 during the interim after Vivienne Westwood moved out and before Phi moved in, and that the restaurant’s interiors were shot somewhere else entirely (possibly even in Los Angeles).  Finding the restaurant’s interior is my next mission for Mike!   🙂

p1000011

p1000012

screenshot315

The Cast Iron Historic District is an architecturally and historically significant area of New York’s SoHo neighborhood.  The Cast Iron District boasts over 250 buildings erected out of cast iron, making it the largest concentration of cast iron buildings in the entire world.  All of the historic buildings were constructed between the years 1869 and 1895, when cast iron was considered the cheapest and easiest-to-use building material.   At the time, different architectural designs were cast in iron inside of a warehouse and later secured into place on building facades creating an architecturally beautiful and diverse area of New York.  The building that Jenna’s hockey player boyfriend stands in front of while signing autographs in 13 Going On 30  is considered by some to be the most brilliant example of cast iron architecture in the city.  The building is known as the “King of Greene Street” and was built in 1872 by cast iron craftsman Isaac F. Duckworth.  It was originally designed as a dry goods warehouse for successful merchant Gardner Colby and now is home to an antique store and art gallery.

p1000014

Even though there is no 13 Going On 30  restaurant to stalk on Greene Street, I highly recommend visiting the area anyway.  With its cobblestone streets and historical buildings, it really is an adorable area of New York.

Until next time, Happy Stalking!

Stalk It: The exterior of the restaurant from 13 Going On 30  is really the storefront of Phi Boutique located at 71 Greene Street in New York’s SoHo neighborhood.  Jenna meets Matt’s fiance just next door to Phi, outside of the building located at 69 Greene Street.  And Jenna’s hockey player boyfriend, Alex Carlson, signs autographs across the street in front of 70 Greene Street.

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Mr. Big’s Church

img_1597

One New York location that I have long been wanting to stalk is the church featured in the Season One episode of Sex and the City entitled “Oh Come All Ye Faithful”.  In the episode Carrie, while doing some research on religion for her weekly column, stumbles upon Big and his mother coming out of a church one Sunday morning.  As usual, Carrie gets a bit carried away and returns to that same church the following Sunday, in full church regalia, to spy on Big and his mom.  At the end of the episode, after Mr. Big introduces Carrie to his mother as “my friend”, the two wind up breaking up – for the first of what is to be many times. 

img_1595

screenshot280

screenshot312

 This location was fairly easy to find as in the episode Carrie refers to the church as “Park Avenue Presbyterian”.  While not the actual name of the church, when I googled “Park Avenue Presbyterian”, the address of a Presbyterian church located on Park Avenue popped up and, sure enough, it was the one used in the episode.  In real life it is named Central Presbyterian Church and it is currently undergoing renovations, so I was not able to get the best photographs of it.  But you can see in the above screen captures that the exterior doors look just as they did on SATC.

img_1593

Filming for the “Oh Come All Ye Faithful” episode took place both inside and outside of the church.  And while I did venture inside for a quick peek at the interior, I didn’t take any photographs as I have to admit I would have felt just slightly uncomfortable taking pictures inside of a church for the sole reason that a show by the name of “Sex and the City” was filmed there.  I would have just died if a priest had walked up to me and asked me what I was doing!  LOL  The church is very beautiful inside, though, with stained glass windows, stone archways, and a huge altar, and I am happy to report that it looks very much the same today as it did back in 1998 when the episode was filmed.

img_1596

screenshot281

While there, I just had to take a picture across the street from the church, at the location where Carrie stands when she first spots Big and his mom.  The really sad part about this photograph is that I hadn’t actually seen the “Oh Come All Ye Faithful” episode for a while, yet, for some reason, I still remembered exactly how Carrie was standing in the scene.  I am beginning to think I really need to get a life!  LOL  Turns out, though, that while I had Carrie’s pose down pat, I actually had the wrong location!!  LOL    As you can see in the above screen capture, Carrie is actually standing in front of the building to the right of the one I posed in front of.  LOL  Although that building has since been painted white, it still has the same wrought iron window coverings with circular cut-outs. 

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: Central Presbyterian Church is located at 593 Park Avenue on New York’s Upper East Side.  You can visit their website here.  In “Oh Come All Ye Faithful”, Mr. Big and his mom exit from the church’s side doors which are located on 64th Street.  The brownstone where Carrie stands in the episode is located just across the street at 107 East 64th Street.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Miracle on 34th Street

p1000232

I wanted to publish this post on Christmas day, but unfortunately ran out of time.  😦  Better late than never!  Anyway, one of my all-time favorite Christmas movies is the 1947 film Miracle on 34th Street.  So, of course, every December while in New York, I drag my boyfriend out to stalk the main filming location used in the movie – the famous Macy’s department store located at the intersection of 34th Street and Broadway. 

p1000229

The Miracle on 34th Street  Macy’s, which is also known as the Harold Square Macy’s, is the company’s flagship store.   With nine floors and 2,150,000 square feet of shopping space, it has the distinction of being known as “The World’s Largest Store”.   In fact, Macy’s takes up almost an entire New York City block!  It’s humongous!  R.H. Macy first opened the New York branch of his department store on the corner of 14th Street and 6th Avenue in 1858.  The store moved to its current location, a nine story building designed by the architecture firm De Lemos & Cordes in 1902.  The Palladian style building which houses Macy’s became a National Historic Landmark in 1978 and has one of the only wooden escalators currently still in use. 

img_1486

Both the interior and the exterior of the Harold Square Macy’s were used in the filming of  Miracle on 34th Street.  In fact, the filming of the movie required more power than Macy’s had on hand, creating the need for additional power sources to be set up in the basement of the department store.  Even though filming took place over sixty years ago, I am happy to report that much of both the interior and the exterior of Macy’s are still recognizable from the movie.  Besides Miracle on 34th Street, Macy’s was also featured in the 1956 film Lovers and Lollipops, the Beat This: A Hip Hop History  television special, and Kanye West’s “Heard ‘Em Say” video.  Popular essayist David Sedaris also wrote a short story entitled “SantaLand Diaries” based on his real life experiences working as one of Santa’s elves at the 34th Street Macy’s.

img_1489

But Macy’s most significant claim to fame would have to be its incredible SantaLand department, which takes up almost all of Macy’s eighth floor during the Christmas season. During the month of December, all of Macy’s nine floors are completely decked out with wreaths, ribbons, and twinkle lights.  Walking into Macy’s at Christmastime is like entering a winter wonderland.  But nothing quite compares to Santa’s New York home – the place where children of all ages can sit on the real  Santa Claus’ lap. 

img_0350

SantaLand has seen quite a few changes since Natalie Wood first visited it and sat on Santa’s lap in Miracle on 34th Street.  The modern day SantaLand is a magical holiday wonderland, complete with numerous miniature railroad displays, dancing bears, and talking trees that look like they came straight out of Disneyland. My personal favorite SantaLand character is an animatronic elf who cleans a miniature railroad display case (pictured above).  His hand actually goes back and forth wiping the case clean with a red cloth.  🙂  So cute!!!

p1000235

I highly recommend stalking the Miracle on 34th Street  Macy’s, especially the real  Santa Claus and the SantaLand department.  There’s nothing else quite like it to get you in the Christmas spirit!  🙂

img_0193

Oh, please Santa, bring me anything from Louis Vuitton!  🙂

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: The Miracle on 34th Street Macy’s is located at 151 West 34th Street in Midtown Manhattan.

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Merry Christmas!

Just a quick post to wish all my fellow stalkers a very Merry Christmas! I hope everyone is enjoying time with family, friends, and loved ones.
Until next time, happy stalking! 🙂

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Tavern on the Green

img_0395

One of my favorite places in New York to grab a drink is a restaurant called Tavern On The Green.  So, on Monday night I immediately recognized the Tavern as the location where The Hills Finale Live From NYC  was held.  Oh, how I wish I could have been there!  🙂   The Tavern has long been a New York institution. In 2007, over 500,000 people dined there, grossing it over $38 million in revenues.  According to Wikipedia, it is the second highest grossing independently owned restaurant in the U.S., second only to Tao in Las Vegas!.  But the Tavern actually had very humble beginnings.  The structure now known as Tavern on the Green was first built in 1870 and served as Central Park’s Sheepfold, a shelter for the many sheep who called the park home.  In 1934 New York City’s Commissioner of Parks Robert Moses renovated the building and turned it into a restaurant.  Forty years later, in 1974, Warner Leroy, the son of Wizard of Oz  producer Mervyn Leroy and Doris Warner (Harry Warner’s daughter), purchased the restaurant and began a $10 million renovation turning the Tavern into the ornate crystal and glass masterpiece it is today.  

screenshot309

screenshot310

Tavern on the Green is no stranger to the big or small screen.  Besides The Hills Finale Live From NYC (which was filmed in the Crystal Room), the Tavern has also appeared in Ghostbusters (Rick Moranis fights with the “terror dog” outside the restaurant’s Crystal Room), Rich Girls (MTV’s really, really dumb reality show about Tommy Hilfigers’s daughter and her best friend), New York Stories (where Woody Allen shares a meal with his mother), Misery (the site of James Caan’s novel release party), Hitch, Yo! MTV Raps, ElimiDATE, Only When I Laugh, Stella, Crimes and Misdemeanors, The Eddy Duchin Story, Made, Portrait of Jennie, The Out-of-Towners, and Wall Street.  And I am about 99.9% positive that Carrie and Big dined in the Tavern’s lantern covered outdoor garden in the Season 2 episode of Sex and the City  entitled “The Caste System” (pictured above), but I haven’t been able to confirm that yet.  And according to the latest issue of People Magazine, Tavern on the Green is where my girl Jennifer Aniston ate Christmas Eve dinner every year as a child.  🙂

img_1494

  Tavern on the Green is a beautiful place to grab a drink or a bite to eat.  Although a few tour books have labeled the restaurant tacky, I would have to disagree.  The Tavern’s gaudiness and over-the-top decor are exactly what make it so appealing.  Where else, but New York can you dine in a crystal ballroom complete with glass walls, hand-painted and hand-carved ceilings, brass and copper mirrors, walls decorated with 52-foot murals, and thousands upon thousands of twinkle lights?  It is one of the most unique, special restaurants I have ever visited in my life.  I absolutely LOVE IT!  🙂  And while the Tavern is pricey, it is worth saving your pennies to experience its rare ambience at least once in your life.  I absolutely love the Tavern’s small cocktail bar (pictured above), but during the summer months nothing beats its outdoor garden, which is lit by hundreds of colored paper lanterns.  It’s absolutely beautiful.    

img_1495

But the most magical time of year at the Tavern is Christmastime.  The interior of the restaurant is covered with countless wreaths, ribbons, and candy canes.  But it is actually the Tavern’s outside that is the most awe-inspiring. 

img_1505

p1000250

Coming upon the Tavern from Central Park, it is almost like a beacon in the night.  The trees in the front and the back are completely covered in twinkle lights – thousands upon thousands of them. I’ve honestly never seen so many in my life!   Tavern on the Green gives Clark Griswold a run for his money!  Pictures truly don’t do the light display justice – it must be seen in person to truly be appreciated. 

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: Tavern on the Green is located at Central Park West at 67th Street.  You can visit their website here.   Reservations are highly recommended!  The bar is first come, first served, but arrive early.  It’s standing room only even on weekdays.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The You’ve Got Mail Brownstone

img_1543

screenshot304

A few years ago, while in New York, I dragged my boyfriend out to stalk many of the filming locations from fave romantic comedy You’ve Got Mail.  I had managed to find almost all of the locations except for the most important one – Meg Ryan’s Upper West Side brownstone from the film.  For some reason this location was a tough one for me to find and, unbelievably, I wound up locating it about two days after I returned from last year’s New York vacation.  😦  Talk about bad timing!!!

89thstreet

Upon my return from New York last December, I popped in my You’ve Got Mail  DVD – which happens to be another known cure for New York homesickness, second only to watching Sex And The City reruns.  🙂  Anyway, in one of the final scenes of the movie, as Kathleen Kelly leaves her house and walks toward the 91st Street Garden to meet NY152 for the first time, she walks past a garbage can with ” W 89″ painted on the lid.  Eureka!!  That little stalking clue led me to search West 89th Street on Google Maps and I quickly found the brownstone used in the film.  On an ironic side note, a guy named Jonathan recently posted a comment on my You’ve Got Mail post alerting me to the garbage can clue.  I guess great minds think alike.  🙂

img_1544

screenshot3061

So two weeks ago, I was able to finally stalk Kathleen Kelly’s adorable brownstone.  And I am happy to say that it looks almost exactly the same today as it did ten years ago when filming took place.  There are, of course, a few differences, though.  Most notable is the gold intercom that Tom Hanks uses to talk himself into Kathleen’s home in the film.  In real life that intercom does not exist.  Most likely it was just a prop that was added for filming and then removed when production ended.  The brownstone’s front doors are also slightly different from how they appeared onscreen and, again, I believe set decorators brought in new doors for the filming that were subsequently removed.  Aside from that, though, You’ve Got Mail  fans will definitely recognize the brownstone as Kathleen Kelly’s.

img_1546

screenshot301

img_1547

screenshot303

I can’t tell you how excited I was to finally be stalking this location – especially since I had been searching for it for years!  For any You’ve Got Mail  fans this one is a definite must see and I highly recommend stalking it!  🙂

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: The You’ve Got Mail brownstone is located at 328 West 89th Street on New York’s Upper West Side.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

“I’ll Have What She’s Having!”

img_1617

While in New York two weeks ago, I just had to drag my boyfriend to the deli where the famous “I’ll have what she’s having” scene took place in fave romantic comedy When Harry Met Sally.  I found this location a few years back in my favorite New York stalking book, New York: The Movie Lovers Guide, but had yet to stalk it.   So I was super excited to make the trek during this trip.  And while we didn’t get a chance to actually eat there on this vacation, I, of course, popped my head in and asked the cashier if it would be OK to snap a few pics of Harry and Sally’s table.   He promptly pointed out where filming took place and told me “Sweetie, take all the pictures you want.”  🙂  I so love New Yorkers! 

img_1620

screenshot300

The deli, which is named Katz’s, is absolutely HUGE in person, much, much larger than it appeared onscreen.  But other than the difference in size, the deli looks pretty much exactly as it did back in 1989 when the movie was filmed.  And if there is any question as to where the famous WHMS  scene took place, you need look no further than the large sign with the arrow hanging down from the ceiling of the restaurant which reads “Where Harry met Sally . . .  hope you have what she had.  Enjoy.”  🙂   Love it!!!!  While I was stalking the famous deli, Harry and Sally’s table happened to be empty, so I was able to sit down and snap a quick pic.  🙂  A bit of WHMS trivia – it was director Rob Reiner’s mother, Estelle, who passed away this past October at the age of 94, who uttered the now famous line “I’ll have what she’s having”. 

While Katz’s is best known for its appearance in WHMS, the deli has actually shown up in quite a few productions over the years.  It was featured in the movie Donnie Brasco, in the scene where undercover agent Johnny Depp grabs a bite to eat with some of his FBI agent buddies.  It was also featured in Across the Universe, Off Beat, and a Law and Order episode.  Besides being a filming location, the deli is also a big time celebrity mecca and the walls are covered with thousands upon thousands of autographed head shots.  Just a few of the stars who have visited the famous deli are John Voight, Mike Meyers, Elijah Wood, Ben Stiller and his parents Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara, Liev Shriber, Keanu Reeves, and Henry Winkler aka “The Fonz”.

img_1618

I highly recommend stalking Katz’s as it looks like a very cool place to grab a bite to eat.  Who knows, you might even spot a celeb while dining.  And the place was jam packed while I was there, so you know it’s gotta be good!  🙂 

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: Katz’s Delicatessen is located at 205 East Houston Street  in New York.  If you’re in the neighborhood be sure to check out the Lower East Side Tenement Museum’s Gift Shop located at 108 Orchard Street.  It’s the BEST New York themed gift shop I’ve ever been to!!!  My boyfriend could hardly drag me out of the place!!  LOL

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized