Photo: Sarah Shatz/Netflix

The highly anticipated show, Marvel’s The Defenders, dropped on Netflix at 12:01 AM today. The show teams up four popular characters from Netflix’s Marvel franchise: Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Danny Rand of Iron Fist, along with their sidekicks. In the first scene of The Defenders, the show offers a convenient way to bring Danny Rand and Colleen Wing back from their attempt to get into K’un-Lun. Now in Phnom Penh, Cambodia fighting members of The Hand, a dying man who has been attacked by one of the group’s assassins tells Rand that his fight is not there, but in New York City. The other characters also pick up where the last season of their shows ended and we pick up with them in some usual neighborhood haunts affiliated with each show.

One of our favorite past times is locating the film locations for these shows, so without further ado, the New York City film locations for The Defenders. We will be adding more locations as we continue to binge watch the show!

1. Metro Diner

Courtesy of Netflix

Matt Murdoch (aka Daredevil) and Karen Page catch up following a successful case for Matt, who is now a trial lawyer. They hang out in Metro Diner, which is actually located at 2461 Broadway at 100th Street on the Upper West Side. The building itself is the rare remnant of a wood-frame building, with the Metro Diner on the first floor. The AIA Guide to New York City calls it a “holdout from the West Side’s frontier days.”

2. St. Nicholas Park, Harlem

Courtesy of Netflix

Claire Temple meets Luke Cage when he gets off the bus at the corner of Convent Avenue and West 128th Street, a few blocks south of the City University of New York campus. They go back to Luke’s apartment where they have a long-awaited hook up, when Detective Missy Knight shows up. Missy and Luke go for a walk in St. Nicholas Park, where they discuss what Mariah Dillard is up to. They stop at a burned out car and Missy tells Luke that there has been a spate of these kind of incidents, all connected to the same M.O., but no drugs.

3. Central Park

Photo: Jessica Miglio/Netflix

Leave it to Sigourney Weaver (aka Alexandra), while sitting in a fabulous white coat on The Mall in Central Park, to make a reference to Manhattan in its pre-colonial days: “It’s a miracle, fact that this park even exists. The fact that the city hasn’t torn it down to put up high rises. Must be hard for these people to imagine the whole island of Manhattan as a forest…The Dutch colonists, when they bought Manhattan for the Natives, they’re said to have acquired the whole thing for $24. Ask me, they overpaid.”

She’s sitting with Madam Gao, head of The Hand, and they’re discussing a meeting with a contact at the Mayor’s office and the “final phase.” Weaver doesn’t believe that it will move fast enough anymore and Gao says, reluctantly, that she will “inform the others.”

4. Rooftop Gardens at Rockefeller Center

Photo: Sarah Shatz/Netflix

This film location at the rooftop gardens in Rockefeller Center appeared in the first season of Daredevil (and in the Spider Man film by Sam Raimi). With a backdrop of St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Saks Fifth Avenue, it’s a perfect location depicting luxury and power. In Daredevil, Madame Gao meets Wilson Fisk here.

In real life, this garden is used for events and weddings with 620 Loft. A matching garden is maintained by Tischman Speyer, the developer at Rockefeller Center.

5. Wall Street Heliport

Photo: Sarah Shatz/Netflix

Danny Rand and Colleen Wing land back in New York City (first by private jet, then by helicopter). The copter takes them to the Wall Street Heliport in lower Manhattan on Pier 6, close to the ferry to Governors Island and South Street Seaport just as some kind of earthquake hits Manhattan, knocking out the lights in nearby skyscrapers. This is clearly part of Alexandra’s grand plan with The Hand, and we see a teaser that perhaps Elektra is not dead after all.

6. 240 Centre Street, Former NYPD Building

Courtesy of Netflix

As seen in Daredevil already, Matt Murdock’s apartment is across from 240 Centre Street, a former Police Building that was converted into condos. When the earthquake/attack hits, he heads back up to the roof of his apartment building and we get another glimpse of the neoclassical Police building with its notable dome and columns. The luxury condos in this building include conversions of the gym and the dome into apartments.

This location was also a prominent film location in The Wolf of Wall Street.

7. The Appel Room at Time Warner Center in Columbus Circle

Photo: Jessica Miglio/Netflix

A classical string quartet performs for Alexandra in the Appel Room at the Time Warner Center in Columbus Circle. The venue overlooks Central Park and 59th Street and is designed like a Greek amphitheater. Alexandra has donated what is likely a sizable sum to the New York Philharmonic and is given a private performance of the Brahms String Quartet No. 1 in C minor.

8. NYC Division of Old Records

Photo: Sarah Shatz/Netflix

When we visited the fabulous archives at the Division of Old Records, the staff there told us a Marvel television series had been filmed in the building at 31 Chambers Street. We were excited to see it appear in The Defenders, as Jessica searches for records for a company but finds that she needs to go back further than 1820. Later, we see Jessica talking to Hogarth in front of one of the staircases inside the archives, and the scene concludes with Hogarth exiting through the revolving doors onto Chambers Street, with the Tweed Courthouse and the Manhattan Municipal Building in the background.

The scene was filmed in the Surrogate Court’s Archives, located in the Surrogates Courthouse at 31 Chambers Street next to City Hall. The Division of Old Records, which shares the building, has records that date to before 1820 too, signed by the likes of Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr.

Check out more photos from out visit to the Division of Old Records!

9. Josie’s Bar

Photo: Barry Wetcher/Netflix (this scene is from Daredevil, but the film location appears in The Defenders as well). 

Matt Murdock catches up with Foggy at Josie’s Bar which is supposed to be in Hell’s Kitchen. Like in Daredevil, the scene was filmed at Turkey’s Nest, a dive bar in Williamsburg just off McCarren Park. There is a real Josie’s Bar as well in the East Village, also a dive.

10. Turkish Cuisine Restaurant

In a flashback, Alexandra has a meal in a Turkish restaurant, in real life called Turkish Cuisine at 631 9th Avenue, across from the Film Center Building in Hell’s Kitchen. The restaurant’s official website claims that the decor will make you “feel that you have been transported direct to the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.”

While enjoying her meal, a black SUV pulls up, a man comes in and says “The Black Sky, we have it.” From the next scene, we see that this is the moment when Alexandra is informed that they have Elektra – referencing back to the scene in the last episode of Daredevil, season two, when Elektra is placed inside a stone sarcophagus. We see shortly Elektra coming back to life.

11. Midland Circle Financial

Photo: Jessica Miglio/Netflix

The fictional Midland Circle Financial, that seems to be the locus of all the shell companies all the Defenders are honing in on is supposed to be located at 560 West 44th Street, which in real life is a two floor garage just off 11th Avenue in Hell’s Kitchen. We’ve been to this location before, in Daredevil, when Matt Murdock and Elektra find the big hole in the ground. The film location for Midland Circle is actually at 635 West 42nd Street, the condo known as Atelier between 11th and 12th avenues.

The 45th floor penthouse of the Atelier has 10 bedrooms and 13 bathrooms and comes with a million dollar yacht, two Rolls Royce cars, private chef and butler, a rental mansion in the Hamptons and other over the top amenities.

12. Royal Dragon Restaurant

Photo: Sarah Shatz/Netflix

The Royal Dragon Restaurant isn’t a real place, although its sign places it at 495 W. 47th Street in Hell’s Kitchen. The actual film location is in Williamsburg, off the Brooklyn Queens Expressway that you can see in background of exterior shots.

13. Eldridge Street Synagogue

As the member of The Hand are summoned to fight the Defenders at the Royal Dragon Restaurant, we see Madame Gao leave her headquarters on Eldridge Street. Across the street is the Eldridge Street Synagogue, a holdout of the Lower East Side’s Jewish community. The stunning interior is often used for film locations and the entire building is also a museum.

14. Guastavino’s

Courtesy of Netflix

Guastavino’s, an event venue built within the vaults of the Queensborough Bridge, was formerly a Food Emporium supermarket. It’s named for the family who did the unique tiling, seen in places ranging from the New York City subway’s mythic City Hall subway station, Ellis Island, St. John the Divine and much more.

Guastavino’s shows up twice – once on the exterior to represent where the Murakami, one of the five fingers of the head comes from when he goes to fight at the Royal Dragon Restaurant, and later, where Murakami fights with Jessica.

15. Paramount Theatre

Photo: Sarah Shatz/Netflix

The abandoned movie theater that the Defenders and Stick end up at with Sowande as a hostage is the Paramount Theatre on Staten Island in the St. George waterfront area, also a film location for the TV show Gotham. The grand theater was open in 1930 with 2,300 seats. According to Cinema Treasures, the theater “was rather unique, because it had a Wurlitzer theatre organ with two consoles, one of only 10 such installations in the USA.”

It is said to be currently under renovation into a multi-use catering and events space.

16. Calvary Cemetery

As in Daredevil, Elektra is buried at Calvary Cemetery in Queens. She discovers the memorial program for her funeral inside a box at Matt Murdoch’s apartment and heads there, where Alexandra finds her.

Next, check out film locations for Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist.

2 Responses
  1. glenn curry Reply

    it might be too technical. the fight scene in episode 7 leading to the PIT is a garage on 43rd street. Next to Tony DiNapoli’s.
    I met Ramon Rodriguez that day because the cast trailers were over on 45th street. near 49 W 45th St, New York, NY 10036
    I have video somewhere of the lights sequencing on and off that you see in the episode. if I recall they filmed there a few days.

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