Al Pacino in Serpico (1973) ©Paramount Pictures

I was looking at a list of films made in Brooklyn, which listed 146 films shot in Brooklyn. When I looked at the list I noticed that many of the films, which were shot at least in part in Greenpoint, were not on the list. This is an incomplete list of films with Greenpoint locations. If you know of films not mentioned on this list, let us know by emailing info@greenpointers.com or commenting on this post.

First on the list are two of the most iconic films made about Brooklyn: 1) Serpico (1973) with Al Pacino, which was shot on Driggs Avenue and 2) Donnie Brasco (1997), based on the real life Greenpointer Sonny Black Napolitano, was shot on West and Manhattan Avenue.

3) The Siege (1998) with Denzel Washington was shot on Manhattan Avenue.

4) A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1945) and 5) To Kill a Cop (1978) were shot on Milton Street.

6) The Departed (2006) with Jack Nicholson was shot in McCarren Park and at the now shuttered Park Luncheonette restaurant.

7) Going in Style (1979) with Art Carney and George Burns was filmed in McGolrick Park/Winthrop Park.

8) New Jersey Drive (1995) was filmed on Kingsland.

9) The Pope of Greenwich Village (1984) was shot in part on Noble Street.

10) The hilariously bad/good horror film Street Trash (1987) was shot all over then-apocalyptic looking North Brooklyn and includes a meat-in-pants scene inside the Met Food off McGolrick/Winthrop Park.

Greenpoint Hospital scene in Street Trash (1987) ©Lightning Pictures Inc.

Other movies that were made in our area include:
11) Dead Presidents (1995) with Larenz Tate.

12) Quick Change (1990) with Bill Murray.

13) Substitute 2 (1998).

14) Sleepers (1996) with Dustin Hoffman and Robert Di Nero had a number of local scenes in it.

Thanks to Exile Ramirez, who gets a thank you and shout out. Can you add more films to the list?

Join the Conversation

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  1. Vigilante starting Robert Forester. I think it was 1982. Pretty badass car chase around Driggs, McGuiness Blvd, and Newell. As well as a few scenes by the McCarren Pool.

  2. 1979 “Going in style” with George Burns. The park was McGorlick know as Winthrop park to the neighborhood residents. I remember them filming that part as I walk to PS 110

  3. Not to mention the numerous Law and Order shows filmed around Greenpoint. Blue Bloods had an episode where Danny is dragging the crook from the house I grew up in on Eagle St. 2 Broke Girls mentions Greenpoint regularly. I did get sight of a Driggs Avenue sign in one of their episodes.

  4. Romeo is Bleeding with Gary Oldman and Annabella Sciorra… scary car scene, shot somewhere around west/kent/greenpt ave waterfront (can’t recall exactly the street).

  5. “An Intervier With God” was shot in McGolrick Park. “ Spinning Into Butter” was shot at the Capri Social Club. Several seasons of “Boardwalk Empire” were shot on Commercial St. as the Atlantic City Boardwalk with a wall of containers standing in for the Atlantic Ocean.

  6. Just watched first episode of The Duce with James Franco. Big part of the show was filmed on Caleyer at the local bar. You can see Capital One bank, Associeted and the recently closed Ottom gym. They placed the bridge in the back, that obviously is not there in real life.

  7. You mentioned “Sleepers” was shot in Greenpoint. Interestingly, Joseph Perrino, the actor who played one of the kids in the first part of that film, plays a thug who bumps into some cops in Luc Besson’s “The Family” (2013), which filmed at the same intersection (Milton and Franklin) that the kids played stick ball and stole the hot dog stand in “Sleepers.”

    In the somewhat obscure “Kicked in the Head” (1996), starring Kevin Corrigan and Michael Rapaport, the beer company Rapaport worked at was located at 160 West Street. (In 2015 most of the buildings were still around, but were soon demolished to make way for opulent condos.)

    On the waterfront between Huron and India streets is where Fred Ward’s police car is shoved into the East River in 1985’s “Remo William.” (All landmarks were also erased circa 2016 to make way for more behemoth condo buildings.)

  8. ‘The Opportunists’ (2000) with Christopher Walken and Cyndi Lauper…Walken’s character lives on Greenpoint Avenue between Manhattan & McGuinness in that odd little old dilapidated house and the Lauper character owns a bar which is the defunct Palace there by McGolrick. I recall it being a great little movie (and Walken plays a NICE guy).

    And the charming ‘The History of Future Folk’ (2012), shot all around, including the 94th Precinct Station and over by the old Terminal Warehouse buildings there.

  9. What hath Geoff Cobb wrought!!! Nice job re all these films.

    However, I believe all of these films were filmed pre 2000. If you do another post 2000, it would be easier to name the films/tv shows NOT filmed in Greenpoint. Greenpoint/Williamsburg has overtaken any area in NYC (with the possible exception of midtown) with the highest number of film/tv shoots. I lost count.

    There has been a major lull this year though. When it all started it was very exciting but with the street closings, loss of parking, mess left behind, nasty film crews (some) and self catering instead of food shopping in the area, many people got tired of them.

  10. Where did you find information indicating that scenes from “A Tree Grows In Brooklyn” were filmed on Milton Street? Not a single scene of “A Tree Grows In Brooklyn” was shot in Greenpoint, let alone anywhere in NYC. Production took place solely on Stage 5, 20th Century Fox Studios in Los Angeles between May 1 and August 2, 1944.

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