This Sunday, June 8th, marks the 30th anniversary of the release of the comedy classic “Ghostbusters.” I admit that I haven’t rewatched “Ghostbusters” in years, maybe since I was young enough to think, “He slimed me” was the funniest line in movie history (it’s not, but it’s up there), yet I feel confident in saying that it holds up as well now as it ever did. If you have kids, watch it with them and you’ll see what I mean, And they’ll be impressed that an incredibly old, clueless person like you actually knows about something good.
Hello, Stay Puft Marshmallow Man.
The reason I’m talking about “Ghostbusters,” though is because it features so many great New York locations. As noted in this Vanity Fair article about the making of the movie , New York in the early ’80s wasn’t the most desirable place to be. The entertainment industry had pretty much fled the crime-ridden, decaying streets, with the notable exception of “Saturday Night Live,” which is why SNL alum Dan Aykroyd and “Ghostbusters” star/creator wasn’t afraid to film here when the idea came up. You know how today people in New York tend to be annoyed at seeing a film crew on the street? The extras and passersby in “Ghostbusters” were probably genuinely excited to see things like Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Harold Ramis, and Ernie Hudson walking down the street in their Ghostbuster gear (though not as excited as the plainly gawking crowds hanging over the railing at Rockefeller Center, watching Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Jules Munshin filming the climactic moment of “New York New York” in “On the Town.” I love old movies.).
There are three locations in “Ghostbusters” that stand out for me.