18 Movies Filmed in Harlem You Can Stream Right Now

Updated: Mar 27


10 movies filmed in Harlem you can stream right now
Many scenes from Steven Spielberg's "West Side Story" were filmed in Harlem. Photo: Disney

Harlem and its streets—the gritty and the beautiful—have served as the backdrop in a long list of memorable films, from classic blaxploitation flicks like "Shaft" to recent Oscar nominees such as "West Side Story" (Best Picture) and "Summer of Soul" (Best Documentary Feature).


These days most can be streamed on subscription services, including Amazon Prime and Hulu. Two on this list—"Claudine" and "Paris Is Burning"—can even be found for free.


Here, then, are 18 notable movies filmed in Harlem—as well as the neighborhood locations to look out for:


In descending chronological order:


West Side Story (2021)

Notable Harlem locations: St. Nicholas Ave between W 111th and W 113th Sts, W 113th St between St. Nicholas Ave and Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd (pictured above), Manhattan Ave between W 121st and W 122nd Sts, W 131st St between Fifth and Lenox Aves, W 134th St between Broadway and Amsterdam Ave, St. Nicholas Ave between W 141st and W 145th Sts


Summer of Soul (2021)

Notable Harlem location: Marcus Garvey Park


Passing (2021)

Notable Harlem locations: 137th and 138th Sts between Adam Clayton Powell Jr and Frederick Douglass Blvds, Graham Court



The Forty-Year-Old Version (2020)

Notable Harlem locations: W 142 St between Convent and Amsterdam Aves, Broadway and 135th Street, Morningside Park


The Irishman (2019)

Notable Harlem locations: Alhambra Ballroom, 416 E 115th Street


Motherless Brooklyn (2019)

Notable Harlem location: 773 St. Nicholas Ave (burned down during filming)


If Beale Street Could Talk (2018)

Notable Harlem locations: 52 Edgecombe Ave, Showman's Jazz Club, 422 St. Nicholas Ave, Lenox Ave between W 122nd and W 123rd Sts


Precious (2009)

Notable Harlem locations: M&G Diner (closed in 2008), Riverside Park stairs (12th Avenue and W 135th Street), and many more


American Gangster (2007)

Notable Harlem locations: Lenox Ave at W 122nd St, 3330 Broadway, Lenox Lounge (demolished in 2017), Mount Olivet Baptist Church, St. Martin's Episcopal Church



The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)

Notable Harlem locations: 339 Convent Avenue at W 144th Street, Trinity Church Cemetery and Mausoleum


Malcolm X (1992)

Notable Harlem locations: Lenox Lounge (demolished in 2017), 125th Street


Jungle Fever (1991)

Notable Harlem locations: Strivers' Row, Sylvia's Restaurant, Graham Court


New Jack City (1991)

Notable Harlem locations: Graham Court, Grant's Tomb, St. Nicholas Park



Paris Is Burning (1990)

Notable Harlem location: Imperial Lodge of Elks


Claudine (1974)

Notable Harlem locations: Edgecombe Ave at W 142nd St, Broadway at W 125th St


Serpico (1973)

Notable Harlem locations: Lewisohn Stadium at City College (demolished in 1973)


Shaft (1971)

Notable Harlem locations: The Apollo, 125th Street



Cotton Comes to Harlem (1970)

Notable Harlem locations: The Apollo, the area around 246 E 127th St (the old Filmways Studio), Lexington Ave and 128th St


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