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Mayor de Blasio Expands Free 'Movies Under the Stars' Outdoor Film Series to More Parks Throughout the Five Boroughs

May 3, 2016

Doubling last year’s total, 300 films will be screened during 2016 season

Over 60 percent of events to take place in parks previously not included in program

NEW YORK—For the first time ever, the City’s outdoor film screening series Movies Under the Stars will bring 300 films to parks in all five boroughs, including many parks that have never hosted movie nights before. 

Mayor Bill de Blasio, Media and Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin and Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver announced the major expansion today, which will double the number of free film screenings to New Yorkers throughout the five boroughs.

Throughout the summer months, parks in the five boroughs will host screenings of classic films like Casablanca, Moonstruck, and The Blues Brothers, as well as new favorites, like Star Wars – The Force Awakens, Inside Out, and Brooklyn. The announcement comes as Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan is scheduled to screen at East Williamsburg’s Cooper Park, a park receiving programming for the first time, on Thursday, May 5.

“‘Movies Under the Stars’ gives New Yorkers in every borough the opportunity to engage with film in a collective and meaningful way,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Our Administration is committed to increasing access to family-friendly cultural opportunities, and this partnership is a perfect example of this work. I encourage all New Yorkers to take advantage of this fun and free summer program.” 

“There’s nothing quite like the experience of watching a film outdoors, and we’re so glad to once again be increasing support for the ‘Movies Under the Stars’ program for the 2016 season,” said Mayor’s Office of Media Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin. “The entertainment industry is a vital component of our City’s economy, and we’re proud to be attracting more filming activity than ever before. This initiative is an opportunity for us to thank city residents for hosting filming in their communities, and to provide New Yorkers with increased access to culturally diverse, thought provoking programming.”

“We are happy to once again present outdoor movies to New Yorkers across the five boroughs and we want them to enjoy this experience to the fullest,” said Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP. “Each year we try to add more films and include more locations so that everyone has an opportunity to come out and catch a movie in a park. This year, ‘Movies Under the Stars’ will show a total of 300 films. We encourage friends, families, residents and neighbors of every community, to take advantage of this moment.”

“‘Movies Under the Stars’ is yet another initiative to make our City's public spaces more accessible and enjoyable for residents across the five boroughs," said Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. "I encourage all New Yorkers to make use of this program to enjoy great films and our city's beautiful parks."

Returning for a second year as part of this initiative is TV Under the Stars, which allows New Yorkers to share in the excitement of network TV’s fall premiere season. Parks around the city will host screenings of brand new shows before they officially air, and events will include special guests and other exciting activities. More details about TV Under the Stars will be available closer to the start of premiere season in September.

The expansion of Movies Under the Stars is the result of a MOME and Parks Department partnership in which the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment is supporting additional screenings and resources. The motivation behind growing the Movies under the Stars program is to bring all New Yorkers closer to the arts; to expand access to cinema to underserved areas in the city; and to thank New Yorkers for supporting filming in their neighborhoods.

More than 60 percent of the 2016 Movies Under the Stars events will take place in parks throughout New York City that have never received programming before. New parks hosting films for the first time in 2016 include:

  • Edward Byrne Park and Harvey Park in Queens;
  • Cooper Park, Linden Park, McGolrick Park, Kelly Park, and John Paul Jones Park in Brooklyn;
  • West Bronx Ball Field, Sachkerah Playground, Van Cortlandt Park, Middletown Park, Crotona Park and Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx;
  • Carl Schurz Park, East River Park Bandshell, Vincent F. Albano Jr. Playground and Howard Bennett Playground in Manhattan; and
  • Bloomingdale Park and Wolfe’s Pond Park in Staten Island.

"It's showtime in Brooklyn, where an expanded 'Movies Under the Stars' will allow more families across the borough to enjoy a summer evening in our beautiful parks," said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams. "These movies are a wonderful – and free – opportunity to relax with your neighbors while watching the coolest classics and hottest blockbusters."

“The expansion of ‘Movies Under the Stars’ means that more families in the five boroughs will have the opportunity to get out and do something affordable together,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. “It is a way to explore the parks and also engage in everyday conversations, interacting with one another as a family unit. We are excited to be a part of the upcoming family-friendly screenings.”

“I’m happy to see ‘Movies Under the Stars’ expand to include more dates and locations this year, including screenings at several parks throughout Staten Island,” said Staten Island Borough President James Oddo. “This is a wonderful opportunity to watch a free movie with the whole family while getting to enjoy Staten Island’s beautiful parkland.”

"Movies and entertainment in the parks are what New York summers are made of," said Queens Borough President Melinda Katz. "More people than ever will be able to enjoy family-friendly movies free of charge in their neighborhood parks. The Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment and NYC Parks deserve to be commended for working together to bring 300 film screenings to our City's parks this season."

"It's great to see movies in the great outdoors – so it's terrific that the City's ‘Movies Under the Stars’ program is doubling the number of films New Yorkers can see in City parks this summer," said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer.

“‘Movies Under the Stars’ connects New Yorkers to art and film and offers communities important opportunities to come together,” said Council Member Mark Levine, Chair of the City Council Parks Committee. “Uniting the arts with our parks is a perfect match, which brings culturally-rich programs to more underserved areas around the City. I’m thrilled to see this expansion that will support both parks and cinema in all five boroughs.”

“I’m pleased with the expansion of the very successful ‘Movies Under the Stars’ program. Outdoor movies are a family-friendly community activity for all to enjoy. I encourage the further development of the program into all of our parks and communities,” said Council Member James Vacca, Chair of the Committee on Technology.

“Thank you to the Mayor de Blasio, Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment and the Parks Department for bringing this great program to Greenpoint’s McGolrick Park,” said Mike Schade of the McGolrick Park Neighborhood Alliance (MPNA). “This is great news for our Park and neighborhood.  Last year we organized a screening of Goonies that brought out over 500 families in the park, so clearly there is a lot of community interest.  We look forward to partnering with the Mayor’s office and Parks Department on this initiative.”

Movies Under the Stars is the annual summer movie series presented by The City of New York. Through this program, New Yorkers are encouraged to pack a picnic, grab a blanket, and enjoy a movie in a neighborhood park. Movies are hosted in all five boroughs and begin at dusk.

Visit for the most up-to-date schedule of screenings and locations.

About the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment
The Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment is comprised of two divisions: the Office of Film, Theatre, and Broadcasting, and NYC Media. The Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting serves as a one-stop shop for the entertainment industry and promotes New York City as a thriving center of creativity, issuing permits for productions filming on public property, and facilitating production throughout the five boroughs. NYC Media is the City’s official broadcast network and media production group, with programming that informs, educates, and entertains New Yorkers about the City's diverse people, neighborhoods, services, attractions, and activities.

About the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation
NYC Parks is the steward of approximately 29,000 acres of land—14 percent of New York City—including more than 5,000 individual properties ranging from Coney Island Beach and Central Park to community gardens and Greenstreets. We operate more than 800 athletic fields and nearly 1,000 playgrounds, 550 tennis courts, 66 public pools, 48 recreational facilities, 17 nature centers, 13 golf courses, and 14 miles of beaches. We care for 1,200 monuments and 23 historic house museums. We look after 650,000 street trees, and two million more in parks. We are New York City’s principal providers of recreational and athletic facilities and programs. We are home to free concerts, world-class sports events, and cultural festivals.

Media Contact
(212) 788-2958