Photo: Paul Schiraldi/Netflix
Orange is the New Black based on the memoirs of Park Slope resident Piper Kerman, films mostly at Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens, just one floor above the Sesame Street set. The creation of the prison set as explained in this video are meant to shape the world of Litchfield, but the show also focuses on life outside of the prison, both in real time and in flashbacks. These are a few of the interesting locations they have put to use.
1. Rockland Psychiatric Center
Photo: Barbara Nitke/Netflix
The show takes place in a fictional women’s prison in Litchfield, NY. There is a jail in Litchfield Connecticut, which was built in 1812. The inspiration for the jail in Orange is the New Black, however, is FCI Danbury in Connecticut. A minimum-security women’s prison when the show began, FCI Danbury no houses only men. Famous inmates of FCI Danbury include: Lauryn Hill, Sun Myung Moon, and Jean Therese Brown. See the next slide for the real location that stands in for Litchfield.
Many exterior scenes in Orange is the New Black are filmed at Rockland Children’s Psychiatric Hospital, a semi-abandoned asylum in Orangeburg, New York. The nearby Rockland Psychiatric Center (above) spans about 600 acres and once housed around 11,000 people. Opened in 1931, electroshock therapy and lobotomies were considered state-of-the-art treatments. The beautiful buildings were kept running by a working farm, a personal power plant, and industrial shops staffed by the patients. The scenes in Orange is the New Black is filmed outside a building built in the 1970s–see our photos of it here.