New York : The must-see places of Men In Black

A wry, sharp, fun sci-fi comedy, Men in Black gives you totally unexpected views of a New York become the playground for some wacky aliens. And even if normally we don’t remember anything after the MIB have been, certain sites are still quite visible. Follow the guide.

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Headquarters

As we mention in our Guide New York of 1000 cult movie, series, music, comics, novel locations, the mythical entrance to the MIB headquarters is in reality one of the ventilation towers of the Holland Tunnel, which provides an underground link between Manhattan and New Jersey.  The HQ interior was created in the Sony studios in Los Angeles.  The decorators were to give it a style resembling that of an airport in the 60s.  The examination room is actually inspired directly from the TWA terminal at JFK.

Battery Park

After his first visit to the HQ of the MIB, agent J (Will Smith) sits in the park just opposite to take stock of new world opening up to him.

Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Created by architects Philip Johnson and Lev Zetlin, for the 1964 Universal Exposition, the towers of the New York State pavilion possess forms you could mistake for flying saucers.  It didn’t take much for the screenwriters to move right in thus transforming the park into an alien landing site.  One of the spaceships even crashes into Unisphere, the 42-meter high gigantic sculpture representing the globe. 

In a very dilapidated state, the towers can no longer be visited and were almost destroyed a few years ago.  A citizen-led effort managed to save them.  They are currently undergoing restoration.

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

The first chase between agent J and an alien takes place in this magnificent modern art museum designed by the great architect, Frank Lloyd Wright.  What’s unique is its helical structure: the visitor enters by the top and spirals progressively down a slightly sloped ramp to finish on the ground floor.

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Empire Diner

Agent J and his partner agent K (Tommy Lee Jones) share a meal before the latter is “neutralised”. The Empire is certainly one of the most beautiful Manhattan diners and appears in numerous films and series.  The interior decoration was totally redesigned in 2011.

Grand Central

Their investigation takes the MIB to Grand Central where a whole colony of aliens inhabits locker number C-18 in the baggage deposit.

Statue of Liberty's

The torch of the statue hides a giant Neutraliser able to erase the memory of New Yorkers so that they’ll forget the combat that has just taken place.

Famous Ben's Pizza

Inside, a Men in Black II poster is a reminder that a scene was shot in this pizzeria where the slices are generous and cheap.

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Cosmic Lanes

The façade of Van Nest Lanes is used for the front of Cosmic Lanes bowling.

Chrysler Building

To save agent K, agent J jumps from the Chrysler building in order to travel in time and return to 1969.

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