New York Film Locations

How 70 Mercer Street Has Changed in the Last 20 Years

1 August 2023

In 2001, the loft apartment at 70 Mercer Street featured in the erotic thriller “Unfaithful”. A film directed and produced by Adrian Lyne and starring Richard Gere, Diane Lane, Olivier Martinez, Erik Per Sullivan, Chad Lowe, and Dominic Chianese, it was adapted by Alvin Sargent and William Broyles Jr. from the 1969 French film “The Unfaithful Wife” by Claude Chabrol and told the story of a couple living in suburban whose marriage went dangerously awry when the wife indulged in an affair with a stranger she encountered by chance.

70 Mercer Street as it looked in 2001.

Scene from "Unfaithful" with Richard Gere standing outside 70 Mercer Street in SoHo.

An early draft of the screenplay presented Edward and Connie Sumner as suffering from a dysfunctional sexual relationship, which gave Connie some justification for having an affair. However, the studio wanted to change the storyline so that the Sumners had a bad marriage with no sex, to create greater sympathy for Connie, though both Richard Gere and Adrian Lyne felt that the studio’s suggestions would have robbed the film of any drama, and so the Sumners’ relationship was rewritten as a good marriage, with her affair the result of a chance meeting.

Scene from "Unfaithful" showing the car park at 72 Mercer Street in SoHo.

Initially, the story was set against snowy exteriors, but this idea was rejected early on. Principal photography began in New York City on 22nd March 2001 and wrapped on 1st June 2001 with Lyne shooting in continuity whenever possible. During the windstorm sequence where Connie first meets Paul, it rained and Lyne used the overcast weather conditions for the street scenes. The director also preferred shooting practical interiors on location so that the actors could feel an intimate sense of belonging. The cinematographer also used natural light as much as possible. A full four weeks of the schedule was dedicated to the scenes in Paul’s loft, which was located on the third floor of a six-story building located on Mercer Street.

Scene from "Unfaithful" inside 70 Mercer Street in SoHo.

In 2001, 70 Mercer Street looked a lot different than it does in 2023. Its neighbour was a small car park, which has also changed, in fact the car park now has a post modern boutique condominium that was designed by Traboscia Roiatti Architects and built by Broadway Partners LLC in 2006. Designed to fit in with the historic architecture, the building runs through the block between Spring Street and Broome Street from 72 Mercer Street to 501 Broadway.

72 Mercer Street in 2023.

72 Mercer Street in 2023.

Mercer Street in 2023.

One estate agent described 70 Mercer Street as a duplex penthouse loft with roof deck in prime SoHo with 5 Bedrooms and 3 Full Bathrooms. Twelve foot ceilings, hardwood floors and massive floor to ceiling windows. The apartment features a movie theatre quality 100 inch high-definition projector screen and HD projector with surround sound and media console. Kitchen Granite counter-tops and stainless steel appliances. The walk in pantry holds enough room for a pantry and laundry room which hosts a stacked Bosch washer/dryer, and the private rooftop is 1,200 square foot, overlooking cobble stone Mercer Street. A far cry from what it looked like during the filming of “Unfaithful”.

70 Mercer Street in 2023.


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