Icons of New Yorkiana burn to ground
Preserved on film, the New York lot at Universal studios is no more. (Photo via lorenpremier on Flickr)
When you're watching a Universal film or TV show set in New York, and the producers were too cheap to come to Gotham itself, you're in the dreamland that is the fabled Universal back lot. But those famous New York street scenes, along with those used in "Back to the Future", have been damaged or destroyed in a massive fire that has consumed the studio's back lot.
The New York set evokes a nostalgic view of the city. Its design is Jane Jacobs approved, with brownstones, stoops and mom-and-pops around every corner. Its disappearance carries a touch of irony, given how the vision of the city it represents is itself vanishing by the day.
Notably destroyed too is the "Back to the Future" set, including the courthouse square area with its famous clock tower. Ironically, a scene in the movie involves a campaign to "save the clock tower" from destruction. And a video vault with thousands of titles has also been damaged. NBC Universal reassuredly offers that there are duplicates elsewhere.
-- Rolando Pujol