New York Film Locations

You've Got Mail Revisited

4 August 2014

Although all sights are firmly set on reaching the 1000th film this month, otsoNY takes time out to repeat the exercise it normally does during the month of August, although this year only picking one film; You’ve Got Mail to revisit and add extra filming locations. In addition to the extra locations, there will be higher quality images to replace all of the existing screen shots.

The romantic comedy was released in 1998 and directed by Nora Ephron. It starred Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. It was written by Nora and Delia Ephron based on the 1937 play Parfumerie by Miklós László, and is about two e-mailing lovers who are completely unaware that their sweetheart is, in fact, a person with whom they share a degree of animosity. An adaptation of Parfumerie was previously made as The Shop Around the Corner, a 1940 film by Ernst Lubitsch and also a 1949 musical remake, In the Good Old Summertime by Robert Z. Leonard starring Judy Garland. You've Got Mail updates that concept with the use of e-mail. Influences from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice can also be seen in the relationship between Joe Fox and Kathleen Kelly, a reference pointed out by these characters actually discussing Mr. Darcy and Miss Bennet in the film. Ephron stated that You've Got Mail was as much about the Upper West Side itself as the characters, highlighting the "small town community" feel that pervades the Upper West Side.

(Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks in You've Got Mail)

The name of the film is an example of product placement, based on the trademark greeting that AOL users hear when they receive new e-mail. The film received significant media coverage leading up to its release in anticipation of the romantic coupling of Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, who had both appeared together previously in Joe Versus the Volcano (1990) and Sleepless in Seattle (1993).

The interesting thing about You’ve Got Mail, is that although the film is 16 years old, there is still a fan-base wanting to track down the film locations. Pae and Guy from Thailand visited New York during 2013 and took time out on the Upper West Side of Manhattan to photograph themselves in Riverside Park where the final scene of the film plays out.

(Pae and Guy)



Another fan of the film is Amy Price, who is currently living in Prague, but back in November of last year spent some time in New York and tracked down the Kathleen Kelly’s home. During her brief visit to the apartment building situated on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, she was lucky enough to meet the elderly couple who lived next door. They had been present during the filming and explained to her about the re-shoots that needed to be done due to the poor weather conditions. Amy also visited Café Lalo on West 83rd Street, where Kathleen waits for her mystery man to show, only to be disappointed to see Joe Fox turn up instead.

(Amy Price)



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