Directed by Les Mayfield, ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ is a 1994 Christmas fantasy comedy film starring Richard Attenborough, Elizabeth Perkins, Mara Wilson, and Dylan McDermott in pivotal roles. A remake of the 1947 movie of the same name, it tells the story of Kris Kringle, who is hired as the store Santa Claus for the Cole’s Department Store. He is so convincing as Santa that every child begins believing him, thus boosting the store’s sales. The only person who doesn’t believe him to be Santa is Susan, the young daughter of the store’s special events director Dorey.
When Susan tells Kris about her Christmas wish list, he tells her that everything on it will come true only if she believes in Santa Claus. Unfortunately, one night Kris is arrested for assaulting a man after being falsely set up. It is now all upon Susan and Dorey’s lawyer boyfriend Bryan to prove his innocence in court. A sweet story about a child’s beliefs and the miracles of faith during Christmas time, ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ is an evergreen holiday classic set against the beautiful backdrop of New York during the festive winters. Curious about the iconic places where this popular Christmas movie was filmed? We’ve got your back. Let’s dive in!
Miracle on 34th Street Filming Locations
Though the story is based entirely in New York, ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ was filmed in different locations in New York City as well as in Chicago and Lake Forest, Illinois. Principal photography commenced on April 7, 1994, and was completed on June 29, 1994. Since the movie was filmed in the Summers, the production team did a commendable job of recreating the feeling of Christmas during that time of the year. Here is a closer look at the exact filming locations of ‘Miracle on 34th Street.’
New York City, New York
The Thanksgiving Day Parade sequence at the beginning of the movie was filmed at Central Park West, Manhattan, between West 76th and 77th Street. The massive western edge of Central Park runs 51 blocks, and the movie ‘Ghostbusters’ was also filmed in one of the buildings there.
Dorey and Bryan’s date night scenes were filmed at the Wollman Skating Rink, located in Central Park, Manhattan, between East 62nd and 63rd Street. The charming skating rink also features in movies like ‘Serendipity‘ and ‘Delirious.’
Few of the movie’s establishing shots were also filmed at Times Square and Rockefeller Center in Manhattan, as well the courtroom’s exterior that was filmed outside the New York County Supreme Court. The iconic department store named Macy’s at 151 West 34th Street in New York refused to be named in the movie. Hence, the store was renamed Cole’s Department Store.
The scenes involving the exterior of the fictional Cole’s Department Store were filmed outside the Art Institute of Chicago, situated on 111 South Michigan Avenue. ‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off‘ was also filmed at this museum, which is often touted as one of the oldest and largest art museums in the world. The Shoppers Express was recreated right across LaSalle Street in the James R. Thompson Center.
The scenes where Kris feeds the reindeer were filmed at the Lincoln Park Zoo, located at 2100 North Clark Street in Lincoln Park, and the Mount Carmel Senior Center was recreated at 6108 N. Winthrop Avenue. Also, the scenes at Dorey’s apartment building were filmed at 2600 N. Lakeview Avenue.
The St. Francis Church, where Dorey and Bryan get married, was recreated at the Holy Name Cathedral, situated at 730 N. Wabash Avenue, as well as at The Rockefeller Chapel on The University of Chicago Campus.
Lake Forest, Illinois
The sequences of the beautiful yellow farmhouse that Susan, Dorey, and Bryan move into at the end of the movie were filmed at an actual property on 771 Washington Road in Lake Forest. The city is located along the shore of Lake Michigan, and several movies like ‘Ocean’s Twelve‘ and ‘Ordinary People’ were also filmed there.
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