9. Downtown Brooklyn

Brooklyn Borough Hall

Downtown Brooklyn, the center of commerce and justice in the borough, has long been a go-to filming location for all genres. The 2015 historical drama Bridge of Spies, which centers on lawyer James Donovan tasked with negotiating the release of Air Force pilot Francis Gary Powers during the Cold War, features the neighborhood prominently. Tom Hanks meets the Russian spy in the film at Chambers Paper Fibers on Plymouth Street, which is quite accurate considering Colonel Rudolph Ivanovich Abel worked at Ovington Studios at 252 Fulton Street.

Brooklyn Borough Hall and the Brooklyn Supreme Court Building have been used for a handful of films including 2002’s Catch Me If You Can. In the film, Frank Abagnale scams a Chase Bank at Borough Hall. A handful of other courthouse and bank shots from the film, which took just 52 days at 147 locations, were done in the neighborhood. The Hoyt-Schermerhorn subway station, perhaps surprisingly, has been one of the neighborhood’s (and Brooklyn’s) most filmed sites. Martin Scorcese even directed the music video for Michael Jackson’s “Bad” at an unused track in the station. Donohue notes how six classic films have had scenes shot here, including The Warriors, The Wiz, and Nighthawks.