Friday, August 23, 2013

Blow Out (1981)

dir. Brian De Palma

Jack Terry (John Travolta) witnessing a car going off the bridge – Wissahickon Memorial Bridge, Henry Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Jack is standing on the pedestrian bridge below.

The motel where Jack brings Sally (Nancy Allen) – Still searching for this location. One of the readers suggested it was a studio set constructed on the top of Belmont Plateau.

The garage where Burke (John Lithgow) replaces the tire on the governor’s car – 304-310 Race Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The studio where Jack works – Apollo Theater, 1311 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The theater was demolished in the early 1990s.

Jacks brings in his film for development – Chestnut Place, 42 S. 15th Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Jacks makes a phone call outside of the Goldman Theatre (now demolished), 50 S. 15th Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Jack meets with Sally – Reading Terminal, 1115-1141 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. When Reading Company went out of business, it sold the headhouse and train shed to SEPTA, the regional rail service. SEPTA operated its regional trains out of the shed until 1985, when they built an underground station that bypassed the terminal. The Pennsylvania Convention Center now occupies most of the building.

Jack waiting in the car before the police stakeout – 224 S. Broad Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The site is now occupied by the Sporting Club at the Bellevue. The camera is looking toward 219 S. Broad Street.

The police stakeout where an undercover agent gets killed – E. Passyunk Avenue at S. 5th Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Lisbon-Madrid restaurant, seen in the background, was located at 609 E. Passyunk Avenue.

Burke picks out his next victim at the Reading Terminal, then follows her through the Reading Terminal Market, 51 N. 12th Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Burke snatches his victim at the bus stop – Market Street at S. 11th Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The murder site – it was the construction site of the Aramark Tower, 1101 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Manny Karp’s (Dennis Franz) hideout – Still searching for this location.

Jack’s apartment building – 323 Arch Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Jack comes to the police to tell them about the incriminating film – City Hall (northwest corner), 15th Street at John F. Kennedy Boulevard, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Karp’s photo studio – 531 South Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The street has changed a lot, and the building is only vaguely recognizable.

Burke making a phone call to his employer – South Street between 3rd and 4th Streets, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Sally’s apartment – 318 South Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The building exterior has been renovated and is only faintly recognizable.

Burke murders a prostitute and later meets with Sally posing as a reporter – 30th Street Station, 2955 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Burke and Sally going into the subway station – 30th Street and Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Jack driving through City Hall – 1 Penn Square, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Jack crashes into the store window – Wanamaker’s Department Store (now Macy’s), 1300 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Burke walking with Sally – Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Jack escapes from the ambulance in front of Independence Hall, 520 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Burke murders Sally – Independence Seaport Museum, 211 S. Christopher Columbus Boulevard, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Jack reminiscing about Sally – Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


  1. "The motel where Jack brings Sally (Nancy Allen) – Still searching for this location"

    That shots a fake. The view is from the top of Belmont Plateau and the hotel is superimposed.

    1. The hotel is a real location in Camden Nj, right across the Ben Franklin bridge, it was called the Four Winds it was on admiral Wilson Blvd, it was torn down years ago, it was indeed a real location. Hope this helps 🎥

  2. John Lithgow stakes out Nancy Allen by watching the escalator in the Gallery Mall, then follows her to Reading Terminal.

    Dennis Franz's fleabag hotel is next to a bar at 2nd and Market.

    1. Thank you. What's the bar called? I don't see a building on 2nd St, similar to the one in the film.

    2. Manny Karp’s hotel was on the northeast corner of 12th street, just north of Market street

  3. There is a sign identical to the "Hotel" sign to the one on Dennis's Hotel hanging off Pandora's Lunchbox on Walnut Street. It's definitely a different building, but it might be the same sign...just moved? I have photos of it.

    1. If we could only find an old picture of the building to prove it...

  4. You can barely see the sign on google maps, it's mostly covered by a tree. If there was a building next to it, it's torn down.,-75.1614837,3a,75y,347.37h,103.62t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1slE7Jc06LTLzoKKN9moHmYw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!6m1!1e1

    1. The facade of the building looks very different from the one in the film.

    2. Yes, I said above that it is not the same building. The only thing I was drawing attention to is the sign, which you can barely see in google maps.

    3. Yes, I see the sign but without some other proof we can't tell if it's the same building.

  5. when they filmed the movie the Moshulu was moored at the north end of Penn's Landing near Market Street, It is now inside the breakwall in the marina at the south end of Penn's Landing

  6. The 30th & Market subwY scene is actually 15th & Market and the platform where John Leithgow and Nancy Allen get on the trolley is the 15th St eastbound subway surface stop.

  7. Another structure still intact is the btidge, or bridges (there are three at the same location!). I recently acquired a 1935 painting of the Wissahickon Creek and bridge, and had not known about the movie. So I bought the movie on eBay. I will be selling the painting on eBay soon, in the ARTIQS store there.

  8. Also, SEPTA never ran the ex-Kansas City P.C.C. cars on the Subway Surface, and that was an ex-K.C. car.

  9. The picture of Burke and Sally going into the subway station is wrong. The top picture is actually 15th and Market Streets under Center Square in Philadelphia. The bottom picture is not the 30th Street Subway Stop. 30th Street has 4 tracks, with the subway on a middle platform and the subway-surface cars running on the outer platforms.

  10. And the Aramark Tower isn't Aramark anymore. It's now Jefferson Tower (they moved into 14 floors of the building, bought naming rights to the building)