Beyond Cassavetes: Lost Legends of the New York Film World (1945-70)

Series Site

In-between Hollywood and the emerging cinematic underground, New York in the 1950s and 60s was home to a little-known but vibrant feature film industry. Beyond bigger names like John Cassavetes and Morris Engel, scores of hopeful, independent filmmakers cobbled together low-budget productions with few prospects for critical or commercial success. From waterfront wise guys to Village beatniks, from film noir to existential comedies, ‘Made in New York’ signified a quirky, vibrant, indie aesthetic that in many ways laid the foundation for later New York-based auteurs like Martin Scorsese, Abel Ferrara, Jim Jarmusch, and Spike Lee, among others. This ongoing series exposes and explores New York’s pioneering contributions to the low-budget independent feature.

Introduced by series curator Michael Bowen, Adjunct Lecturer at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Special thanks to the Estate of Raymond Phelan.