School Of Rock | 2003
Jack Black steals the show in a tailor-made role as rock-obsessed slacker Dewey Finn, forging a class of aspirational prep school kids into a rock band. Finn is fired from his band, Maggotdeath, after executing a truly tragic stagedive at Northsix, 66 North 6th Street, Williamsburg, in Brooklyn. The indie music venue closed down in controversial circumstances in 2003, but now lives on as Music Hall of Williamsburg.
‘Horace Green Preparatory School’, at which Finn contrives to wangle a job as substitute teacher, is made up of two separate locations.
The Gothic exterior is on Staten Island. It’s Wagner College, 1 Campus Road, Grymes Hill. The school interiors were filmed over on Long Island, at Buckley Country Day School, 2 I.U. Willets Road, Roslyn.
Back on Staten Island, Finn softens up apparently straitlaced Principal Mullins (Joan Cusack) with beer and Stevie Nicks at rock club/karaoke bar Cargo Cafe, which is – you guessed it – closed. Don’t despair, there’s still music and karaoke at what is now 120 Bay Cafe, 120 Bay Street at Slosson Street, St George. On the northeastern tip of the island, St George is home to the Staten Island Ferry terminal.
St George is also the site of the climactic ‘Battle of the Bands’, which is staged at the St George Theatre, 31 Hyatt Street. Opened in 1929, this 2,800 seat vaudeville and movie house was the most magnificent theatre on Staten Island. After being shuttered for many years, the theatre has been restored, and reopened in 2004. You won’t recognise this as the frontage seen in the film, though.