7. SoHo contains New York’s only autonomous nonprofit cinema
Film buffs interested in arthouse cinema and foreign films know that Film Forum is one of the city’s best independent cinemas, but many may not know that it’s also the city’s only autonomous nonprofit cinema. When it opened in 1970, it was located in a screening space with just 50 folding chairs on Vandam Street, but it is now housed in a cinema with four screens and nearly 500 seats built in 1989 on W. Houston Street. While cinemas are shutting down all over the U.S. Film Forum is going strong with up to 250,000 annual admissions and 6,500+ members.
Film Forum runs two different film programs: one focused on theatrical premieres of American indie films and another focused on foreign art films such as the 1960 French New Wave classic Breathless by Jean-Luc Godard. It also shows foreign and American classics, genre works, and retrospectives dedicated to award-winning directors.