9. The neighborhood was at the center of the fictional Corleone crime family in The Godfather novel and films

Mulberry Street Bar
Little Italy’s Mulberry Street Bar was featured on The Sopranos and Law & Order.

Over the years, Little Italy has been prominently featured in many of the world’s most iconic film and television productions. One such example is Francis Ford Coppola’s three-film series based on Mario Puzo’s 1969 novel The Godfather. The film follows the trials and tribulations of the fictional Italian-American mafia Corleone family. Many of the film’s scenes center around the Corleone family’s daily operations as one of the Five Families of the New York Mafia. Most prominently, St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral served as the setting for the baptism scene in The Godfather Part II.

Another influential film set in Little Italy is Martin Scorsese’s 1973 Mean Streets, which starred Robert De Niro, who also grew up in the area. In addition, Little Italy served as the backdrop for Luc Besson’s 1994 film Leon: The Professional, which starred Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, and Natalie Portman. On television, Little Italy’s Mulberry Street Bar— one of the oldest in the city — has been featured on The Sopranos and Law & Order.