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New York City Public Library

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"Hold your fire til we see a moment of weakness"

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Specifics: Ghostbusters International



The New York City Public Library was the location of the first ghost encounter. It is located at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and West 42nd Street in downtown New York City.

HistoryEdit

GhostbustersEdit

After receiving a phone call from Roger Delacorte, Egon Spengler and Ray Stantz went to the library to check P.K.E. levels and investigate. After the P.K.E. levels maxed out the P.K.E. Meter, Dr. Stantz returned to Columbia University to pick up some other equipment and get Dr. Venkman to join the team. Once the team assembled at the library, they interviewed Alice the librarian, a recent victim of the ghost, and went down to the stacks to look for the specter she described. They encountered the Library ghost and tried to make contact with it. The experience later gave Dr. Stantz and Dr. Spengler some impetus to develop a proton storage facility for indefinite incarceration of spirits.

Ghostbusters: The Video GameEdit

While on route to the Natural History Museum, the Ghostbusters are detoured to the library after Janine Melnitz clued them to a radio report on 1010 WINS. Captain McMahon from the 12th Precinct told Ray there was a massive disturbance, a "real fireworks show." They checked for valences and suddenly two animators burst through one of the lion statues then flew into the library. The guys split up to track the animators. The Rookie heads to the Reading Room and encounters a Book Golem. Upon its destruction, the Library ghost is sighted in a corner. Rookie, Ray, and Egon give chase. They discovered not all print is dead, as Book Bats and other paper based creatures attack them while chasing the Library ghost (also known as the Gray Lady). Egon's readings are off the charts. It is concluded that there were other powerful ghosts there including the Gray Lady's killer, Azetlor.

Meanwhile, in the periodical archives, Winston uncovered some history between the Library ghost, Eleanor Twitty, her ex-lover Edmund "The Collector" Hoover, and the Gozerian Codex. After Rookie and Ray captured the animators Cruster and Crusto, they cut through the Juvenile Collection and rejoin Egon at Special Collections. The ghost shushes them again and summons Book Centurions. Rookie discovers a secret passage. The trio heads down into the sub-basement and discovers stacks and stacks of books and entities out to kill them. They press on and find the Library ghost. They watch as she seemingly reenacts her death. Egon notes the codex is emitting massive energy. Rookie is sent to retrieve it. The ghost vanishes then reappears and attacks them. They easily capture her and a cross-dimensional portal materializes. Rookie, Egon, and Ray cross over into a Gozerian dimension and seemingly find themselves in the Reading Room but the dimensional membrane is extremely thin here. Azetlor won't let them return to the physical plane with the Gozerian Codex. After Rookie, Ray, and Egon take down Azetlor another portal opens up and takes them back. They appear right to Winston. Egon notices a Mandala on the wall above them and one of the nodes turns off. They hurry back to the Firehouse to analyze the Codex.

Secondary CanonEdit

Ghostbusters: The Board GameEdit

A paranormal storm cloud encircling 55 Central Park West prompted the Ghostbusters to conduct research at the New York Public Library. Zuul and Vinz Clortho manifested near one of the famous lion statues and across the block respectively. The Ghostbusters prevented their reunion and forced them through the Terror Spirit World Gates at the same time. Continuing on with their research, they unearthed the Necronomicon and accidentally awoke Cathulhu. After dealing with five Spawn of Cathulhu, the Ghostbusters closed the Align Gates and placed Cathulhu back into a deep slumber.

IDW ComicsEdit

While the other Ghostbusters were on a flight to Italy, Egon went to the library in search of a copy of "The Johansen Argument" for a project he initiated during his recovery. It was missing from the shelf. As Egon made his way down the steps outside, he called up Ray's Occult Books but their copy was sold, too.

Noted PlacesEdit

  • Reading Room
  • Juvenile Curriculum
    • Also known as Children's Reading Room
  • Special Collections
  • Periodical Archives
  • Sub-Basement

EmployeesEdit

  • Alice the librarian
    • Librarian
  • Roger Delacorte
    • Administrator
  • Matt Vegan
    • First Response Trained Staff
    • Name on green and white sign to right of employee break room door and microfilm readers where first Paper Construct runs past
  • Simon Powlle
    • Medical Staff Manager
    • Extension is 117
    • Name on green and white sign to right of employee break room door and microfilm readers where first Paper Construct runs past
  • Mr. Spektor
    • Left a message on the Firehouse answering machine about a ghost stealing change from a vending machine and Ray's overdue books during the Shandor Incident. [1]

TriviaEdit

  • The scaffolding seen at the New York Public Library were part of an ongoing cleaning project at the time of filming. [2]
  • Joe Medjuck crosses the screen just before the one minute mark. [3]
  • The room Alice and later Peter, Ray, and Egon check out were filmed in the Los Angeles Public Library. [4] [5]
  • Ruth Oliver, who portrayed the human form of the library ghost, didn't film at the library sets. She did her scenes at Entertainment Effects Group then later inserted optically into shots. [6]
  • The card catalog effect was done by physical effects supervisor Chuck Gaspar. He constructed a special bank of cabinets rigged with air hoses. It was sent to the Los Angeles Public Library shoot. [7]
  • The floating books were Dan Aykroyd's idea during principal photography in lieu of a more expensive flying books concept. [8]
  • The floating book effect cost $250,000. [9]
  • The stack of books was Ivan Reitman's idea while he was on his way to the morning shoot. He felt it was a strong set up for the ghost sequence. [10]
  • Peter's collection of the Ectoplasm was another late addition to library shoots. [11]
  • Filming at the library had to be done before 10 am. [12] This means there was 5 hours to get it done between the crew's 5 am call to the library's 10 am opening. Despite the logistics of getting the reading room lit, staging and photographing, and clearing it all away, filming of exterior and interior shots was done in a part of a single day of location shooting. [13]
  • Originally, the library was going to be introduced by two establishing shots but on the day of filming they were combined into a single sweeping crane shot. [14]
  • When Peter and Ray are walking up the stairs to the library, Peter asked Ray, "How many of these things have you actually seen?" Ray replied by saying, "What do you mean by 'seen'?" Peter said, "Looked at with your eyes." The joke never got a laugh from test audiences so the exchange was cut from the movie except for Peter's question. [15] [16]
  • Footage from the library scenes were part of the first screening. The Library ghost's transformation was one of the only special effects done so far. [17]
  • Some of the library shoots were done on the first day of principal photography. [18]
  • The sequence where Peter, Ray, and Egon run out of the library took at least 20 takes. During filming, the camera lens cap kept falling off or a prop would fall out of an actor's pocket. When the nearby crowd enjoyed the filming so much that when they realized there was going to be another take, they cheered. [19] [20]
  • On page 19, panel 2, of Ghostbusters Annual 2015, left of Egon and under the parabola is "Library" - a reference to the public library.
  • In Ghostbusters International #2, page 10:
  • In Ghostbusters International #2, page 11 panel 3:
    • On the far right is the end of the world man from The Real Ghostbusters episode "Ragnarok and Roll"
    • The blue and white sign advertises Wolf Van Shandor. His artwork was on display at the New York Public Library in Ghostbusters: The Video Game, Realistic Versions
    • Milton Angland from Ghostbusters II appears right of the Wolf Van Shandor sign
    • Elaine from Ghostbusters II appears on the far right below the lion statue.

AppearancesEdit

Primary CanonEdit

Secondary CanonEdit

Cryptozoic Entertainment

IDW Comics

ReferencesEdit

  1. Mr. Spektor; After Checking Out the Library, Firehouse 2nd Floor Answering Machine Message 4 of 13 (2009). Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Realistic Versions) - Firehouse (2009) (Video Game). Terminal Reality. Mr. Spektor says: "This is Mr. Spektor at the Public Library. Who do we contact to remove the black goo from all over our break room? Please get back to us soon. It seems to be talking to us. And we think it's stealing money from the vending machines. Also, Mr. Stantz still has a number of books checked out that are overdue. The current fine is $417.42. ...Please, we just want them back."
  2. Ivan Reitman (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 00:25-00:41). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Ivan Reitman says: "Now we actually shot this in New York at the Public Library. But unfortunately there was scaffolding everywhere because they were cleaning the building... "
  3. Joe Medjuck (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 00:56-00:59). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Joe Medjuck says: "And this handsome young man is me 15 years ago crossing the screen. "
  4. Ivan Reitman (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 00:59-01:07). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Ivan Reitman says: "And through the magic of cinema, as she [Alice] walks down the stairs we are now shooting in the Los Angeles Public Library. "
  5. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 16 annotation. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "Although the labyrinthine stacks of the New York Public Library were scouted for possible employment, aesthetic and economic considerations prompted the production unit to shoot instead within the main branch of the Los Angeles Public Library ."
  6. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 32 annotation. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "Murray, Aykroyd and Ramis were filmed on location at the Los Angeles Public Library, while the actress playing the ghost was photographed on an effects stage at Entertainment Effects Group and then inserted optically in the shots."
  7. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 19. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "From these drawings, physical effects supervisor Chuck Gaspar was able to construct a special bank of cabinets, rigged internally with air hoses to spew cards on cue The card catalogues were then transported to the Los Angeles Public Library where the sequence was shot."
  8. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 18 annotation. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "During principal photography, it was decided that the flying books concept was too obvious an effect. At Dan Aykroyd's suggestion, several volumes were instead made to float mysteriously across the aisles, exchanging places while the librarian's back is turned."
  9. Harold Ramis (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 01:27-01:29). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Harold Ramis says: "$250,000. "
  10. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 28 annotation. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "To sustain the suspense -- and at the same time reinforce the comedy -- Ivan Reitman felt that the first real ghost sequence demanded a stronger setup than what appeared in the script. So, on his way to the set on the morning of shooting, he came up with the idea of having his scientists discover a single stack of books piled from floor to ceiling."
  11. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 28 annotation. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "Also inserted into the sequence was Venkman's first involvement with 'ectoslime' -- a gooey residue found dripping from an open card catalog drawer."
  12. Ivan Reitman (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 07:45-07:46). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Ivan Reitman says: "All before 10:00. "
  13. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 16 annotation. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "Exteriors of the New York Public Library and scenes within its main reading room consumed only part of a single day's location shooting. From a logistics standpoint, the interiors were especially demanding since the expansive reading room had to be lit, the action staged and photographed, and then everything cleared away -- all within the few short hours available between the crew's 5 a.m. call and the library's 10 a.m. opening to the public."
  14. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 17. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "In a deviation from the scripted text, the two exterior establishing shots -- designed to introduce the New York Public Library -- were ultimately combined into a single sweeping crane shot in which the camera tilted down the face of the building, coming to rest on one of the edifice's distinctive stone lions."
  15. Beyond The Marquee Joe Medjuck Interview 9/15/14
  16. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 25 annotation. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685. Paragraph reads: "Though Venkman's "looked at with your eyes" line was a favorite, and even became a catch phrase within the production crew, its ultimate failure to get laughs during previews resulted in its deletion -- along with its setup line."
  17. Ivan Reitman (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 10:24-11:05). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Ivan Reitman says: "But he um this first moment of seeing the Librarian and the Librarian shift... I remember our first screening. Our first test screening was only three weeks after we finished shooting. We edited the movie very quickly. It came together nicely and we didn't have much of our special effects but we had this one here, not so much this one but the one that's coming up - the transformation and when we screened it for this audience for people at Columbia Studios they just freaked out... both screamed and laughed at the same time. It was a sense of how the movie was going to work, both truly scary and really funny. "
  18. Joe Medjuck (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 12:25-12:27). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Joe Medjuck says: "No, this was the first day of principal photography. "
  19. Entertainment Weekly ""Ghostbusters: An Oral History" Violet Stiel quote 11/7/14
  20. Labrecque, Jeff (2014). "Ghostbusters: An Oral History". Entertainment Weekly.


GalleryEdit

Primary CanonEdit

Secondary CanonEdit

Non CanonEdit

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