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Revenge of Shot on Site Summer - Ghostbusters II Locations, Part 2

 By Paul Rudoff on Jul. 28, 2019 at 12:00 PM , Categories: Ghostbusters 2, Filming Locations , Tags:
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In honor of the respective 35th & 30th anniversaries of the original Ghostbusters movies, every Sunday - henceforth dubbed Shot on Site Sundays - at Noon (Eastern) for the next several weeks (schedule here), I will go through the original two movies from start to finish, showing and telling you where everything was filmed in Manhattan, New York and Los Angeles, California. This will be part filming locations rundown, part behind the scenes exploration, and part "Making Ghostbusters". All parts are available here in reverse order: Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II. I will be utilizing the home video cuts of both movies, which can be found on the 2014 Blu-ray Double Feature, as well as the recently-released 5-Disc 4K UHD & Blu-ray with Bonus Disc Set. With that in mind, SPOILER WARNING if you read any further... though I suspect that if you're at Spook Central, you've already seen both movies a million times over.

The majority of real world New York photos were taken by Alex Newborn in July 2014 and Lars Karlsen in July 2018, and are being used with permission. The enlargements for these photos, and for the movie framegrabs, can be found on the various Filming Locations pages elsewhere on Spook Central. Other images are credited where known. Locations were identified by various people and sources over the past 35 years. Those that are not common knowledge are credited on the specific Filming Locations pages (see previous link). The title graphic seen at the top was created by Lars Karlsen, based on an idea by Paul Rudoff. It can be enlarged for a better look at its beauty. Now that that's out of the way, we've got movie sign...

Dana gave up playing the cello in order to become an art restorer at the Manhattan Museum of Art.

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The exterior is the Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House at 1 Bowling Green in New York. The restoration room scenes were filmed on a soundstage at The Burbank Studios in California.

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(pre-2007, credit: Piotr Melkowski)

The Customs House is a stone's throw away from the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel's ventilation building. Although it says "Brooklyn Battery Tunnel - Triborough Bridge & Tunnel Authority" on the exterior of the building, it's actually -SHUSH- the New York headquarters for the Men in Black. There's a rumor that Kevin Beckman, those other Ghostbusters' dimwitted secretary, is actually an undercover MIB agent.

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(credit: Google Earth & Alex Newborn)

After the Ghostbusters went out of business, Ray opened up his own occult book shop. Later, he met another local book seller over the internet, and then Amazon put them both out of business.

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It's hard to tell these days, but his little shop was located at 33 St. Mark's Place in New York. Were it not for the movie showing us the St. Mark's Deli, numbered "31", next door, this would be impossible to identify today. Not only has the deli changed so much, but so has the area to the right of the storefront. The ground level door is now hidden behind a staircase that goes up to a new entryway on the second floor. All of the white paint has been scraped off, but the tree in front is still there. In March 2004, the storefront that was Ray's Occult was Rockit Scientist Records.

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(March 2004, credit: Chris Buchner)

Coco Fresh Tea & Juice was there in July 2018.

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(July 2018, credit: Lars Karlsen)

After a few more interior soundstage sets - Ray's Occult and Dana's Apartment - we're back on location in New York.

The guys help Dana with her little ghost problem by visiting the intersection where her baby buggy stopped.

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This is the same intersection of East 77th Street and First Avenue that we saw earlier when the buggy stopped, only this time it's from the opposite direction (looking up towards Dana's apartment building).

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(July 2014, credit: Alex Newborn)

Filming the upshot of Egon and Ray examining the exact spot where the buggy stopped. The green store sign to the left of Egon's head appears to be blurred out; a common occurrance in the book.

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(source: Ghostbusters Ultimate Visual History)

Egon and Ray want to investigate further, so they all return at night to dig a big hole in the middle of the street.

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I would love to know why Ivan Reitman thought audiences would be fooled into thinking this was the same intersection we saw earlier. It looks nothing like the place we saw in the previous scene, and there's a good reason for that. It's a street all the way on the other side of the United States: the intersection of East 8th Street & South Los Angeles Street in...wait for it... Los Angeles, California.

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(circa 2009, credit: Google Maps)

The only "connective tissue" between the two locations is the faux "Cho-Sen 7-24 Food Shoppe Ltd." green awning and windowed tarp placed on the corner storefront, even though the two buildings still look nothing alike.

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In a few repeated locations... We go back to the museum for Dana's boss, Janosz Poha, to become possessed by the influence of Vigo; then it's back to the guys tearing up the road. They lower Ray down the hole, where he finds Milo Murphy, Diogee, and The Undergrounders. Oh, and there's also slime. What? IT'S A RIVER OF SLIME!!!!! I'm going to skip this discovery for now, as I can better address it when Egon and Winston join Ray later on for some on-site exploration

Back above ground, Janosz visits Dana after Ray causes a blackout whilst getting out of the hole. The police show up and arrest the Ghostbusters, which leads to them appearing in court. If only the real justice system worked that quickly.

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The exterior is the Thurgood Marshall U.S. Courthouse at 40 Centre Street (Foley Square) in New York. It's near City Hall, which has other filming locations surrounding it, as I mentioned when I was discussing the first film.

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(July 2014, credit: Alex Newborn)

The vitriol of Judge Stephen Wexler causes the spirits of Nunzio and Tony Scoleri to manifest from the jars of pink slime on the evidence table.

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The courtroom is a set on one of the Burbank Studios soundstages. The Scoleri Brothers were filmed separately at the Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) special effects studio. Below we see Tim Lawrence getting into the Nunzio fat suit.

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(source: Cinefex issue #40)

"I tried them for murder! Gave 'em the chair!"

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Tony takes flight, with Jim Fye inside the costume.

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(source: The Real Ghostbusters Magazine, Winter 1990 issue)

After the reformed Ghostbusters put those two in a box, they are ready to go on their first montage in five years. That's a long time to go without a montage. Do they still remember how to do it?

For reasons known only to them, the Ghostbusters decide to do away with their world famous No Ghost logo. They hang a No Peaceful Ghosts logo on to the firehouse. That's right, the new Ghostbusters only bust the ghosts of hippies.

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Of course we're back at the holy site of Ghostbusters filming locations: the real-life firestation for Hook & Ladder Company #8 at 14 N. Moore Street in New York. This shot is actually the tail end of a much longer shot/scene in which Peter supervised the removal of the original logo sign. If you frame advance the movie, you can catch a glimpse of the workers who removed the original sign in the bottom right at the beginning of the shot. Though you need not bother with that, as below are some photos showing the missing portion.

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(source: Derek Osborn)

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(source: Derek Osborn)

The filming of the scene.

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(source: Gort17)

The Ghostbusters drive down the street in their new bright and shiny "Ecto-1A", with beautiful LED signboard on the side of the roof rack. Why they felt the need to pay for a new license plate is beyond me. It seems like an unnecessary business expense. I think they need a new accountant. (The image below is a rough composite of four frames as the car passes by three store signs that are next to each other. I blurred out the top of the car as it could be distracting from the important identifying details in the composite.)

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This is a location that is being IDENTIFIED HERE FOR THE FIRST TIME. Thanks to Daniel Bamford, we now know that this set of stores were located at 532-536 Columbus Avenue (at West 86th Steet) in New York. This is actually two to three blocks down the road from where the dilapidated Ecto-1 was on its way to the birthday party at the beginning of the movie. The only proof that was needed to show this as the correct place were these vintage 1980s photographs that he found.

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(source: Landmark West!)

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(source: Landmark West!)

It's a good thing that Daniel found the vintage photographs because you would not recognize the place today. None of those three stores are still in business and the whole storefront level has been completely renovated.

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(Oct. 2017, credit: Google Maps)

The Ghostbusters continue to drive down the street.

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The Ectomobile has been magically transported from Columbus Avenue to First Avenue, turning onto East 76th Street, where it passes the 3-Star Diner at 1463 First Avenue. In the first part of the shot, on the far right, one can see the the spot where Louis would later wait for the bus. Note the blurry round red neon, which is a clock we'll see a little better in that later scene. The intersection where the baby carriage stopped is a block from the diner (two blocks from the bus stop), also on First Avenue. And if you then turn left onto East 77th Street, you can visit Dana's apartment!

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(July 2004, credit: Chris Buchner)

The Ghostbusters get into the holiday spirit.

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They're coming out of Record Explosion at 2 Broadway, just across the street from the right side of the U.S. Customs House, which as already mentioned, plays the museum. At one point, there were several Record Explosion stores throughout Manhattan, selling music and videos in all of the popular formats of the day. By the mid-2000s, all of the Record Explosion stores were out of business. The store in the corner spot at 2 Broadway is currently a Chipotle restaurant.

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(July 2014, credit: Alex Newborn)

As noted in my Shot on Site article, after filming this shot, the guys stood in front of the Ecto-1A parked across the street to take the famous Santa hat promotional photo.

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Do the Ghostbusters go back in time to make Ebenezer Scrooge a hero? Find out next week - same ghost time, same ghost channel - when we continue our look at the filming locations from Ghostbusters II.

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