Lady Liberty in Film: 15 Movies With the Statue of Liberty

On July 4, 2013 the Statue of Liberty will reopen to the public. Lady Liberty has been off limits since October 29, 2011. She was closed for scheduled repairs and upgrades, which included new elevators and staircases. She reopened briefly on October 28, 2012 but just one day after the opening, the park was swiftly closed because of potential damage done by Hurricane Sandy. Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty have remained closed all this time.

Being able to allow guests to return to Liberty Island starting on July 4th is a big deal, and tourists visiting New York City this summer will be thrilled to add this excursion to their list of Big Apple must-dos. Part of the stalling for reopening the park wasn’t due to any damage the statue suffered from Hurricane Sandy. Thankfully the statue was not harmed. Disagreements over security screening locations are the reasons many are pointing to in explanation for the delay. In early June, the city finally came to an agreement about when and how security would be handled for guests of Liberty Island.

Visiting the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty is free, but you will need to pay for the ferry ride to the island as well as an extra fee if you want to walk up to the crown.

To celebrate the return of one of America’s most celebrated and iconic women, we have compiled the ultimate list of her greatest performances in film. Many of you may think of the Statue of Liberty as the hero saving New York City in Ghostbusters II, or as part of the shocking ending in Planet of the Apes. She has also been the scene for some of the most epic battles in film, as well as the backdrop to a mermaid love story.

  • 15 Films With the Statue of Liberty 1 of 16
    Lady Liberty is Back: 15 Films Featuring the Statue of Liberty

    The statue of Liberty reopens on July 4th! Celebrate by watching her performances in these 15 iconic films.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Saboteur 2 of 16

    The final scene from Alfred Hitchcock's Saboteur is so tense I can not sit down when I watch it. I truly do not want to give away any of the plot points of this underappreciated film, so I will simply say: there is a fight on the arm of the Statue of Liberty. A BIG FIGHT. It involves the, gulp, torch. 


    See the Statue of Liberty in Saboteur.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Superman III 3 of 16

    Pamela Stephenson is 100% campy in her role in Superman III. In this scene, she demurely perches on top of the head of the Statue of Liberty and tries to seduce Superman. 


    See the Statue of Liberty in Superman III.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Superman IV 4 of 16

    The special effects in Superman IV are shockingly, well, dated. In this scene we see the Statue of Liberty destroyed by a villain, and Superman vows to repair her.


    See the Statue of Liberty in Superman IV.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Titanic 5 of 16

    The Statue of Liberty has just a small cameo in the Titanic, but she symbolizes so much for Rose. 


    See the Statue of Liberty in Titanic.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • X-Men 6 of 16

    EEEEEEK! It's another movie with a huge fight scene on the Statue of Liberty. This time it's the mutants from X-Men who are battling it out inside Lady Liberty in this explosive final scene.


    See a hint of the fight scene in the Statue of Liberty in the X-Men trailer.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Splash 7 of 16

    Splash captures the heart of the Statue of Liberty. When Madison emerges from the water she is a strange woman (mermaid) in a strange land, not understanding language or cultures. The Statue of Liberty gives her comfort and peace much like it has given many other newcomers to America.


    See the great Statue of Liberty scene from Splash.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Planet of the Apes 8 of 16

    The final scene from the original Planet of the Apes was so shocking it instantly became a pop culture moment often referenced in films and TV. Rather than show the actual scene, I found an interesting clip from the "Behind the Planet of the Apes" showing how the filmmakers created the Statue of Liberty scene.


    Watch the behind the scenes clip from Planet of the Apes.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Madagascar 9 of 16

    Madagascar is an example of a film that not only referenced Charlton Heston's famous final lines from Planet of the Apes, but it also included a makeshift Statue of Liberty totem.


    See the Statue of Liberty reference in Madagascar.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Escape from New York 10 of 16

    A film major who I knew in college had the movie poster for Escape from New York hanging up on the wall of his dorm room. He liked to point out to people how clever he was, because he was going to be class of 1997 from a film school in New York. GET IT?! The Statue of Liberty really doesn't fare too well in this film.


    See the Statue of Liberty in Escape from New York.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Ghostbusters II 11 of 16

    Now is where I confess: When I think of the Statue of Liberty in film, the first movie that comes to mind is Ghostbusters II. The entire movie theatre cheered when Lady Liberty rescued New York City. I dare you not to grin while watching this clip.


    Watch the Statue of Liberty in Ghostbusters II.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • An American Tail 12 of 16

    In the final scene of An American Tail, we find out what the French pigeon has been up to: helping build the Statue of Liberty! 


    Watch Henri, the French pigeon, inside the Statue of Liberty in An American Tail


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Deep Impact 13 of 16

    1998 was a BIG year for disaster movies as CGI and special effects were becoming more and more amazing and seamless. In Deep Impact, a massive tidal wave scoops up the Statue of Liberty (along with the rest of New York City).


    Watch the moment of impact in Deep Impact.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Home Alone 2 14 of 16

    The trailer for Home Alone 2 still gives me the skeevies. As you can see from the poster, the Statue of Liberty has a less than favorable reaction to the creation of a Home Alone sequel. In the trailer we actually see Lady Liberty give us the full on, hands to the face, open mouth, shock look.


    Watch the bizarre trailer for Home Alone 2 with the Statue of Liberty.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • The Day After Tomorrow 15 of 16

    The Day after Tomorrow is a disaster film with a global warming theme -- New York City is hit with a tsunami and the Statue of Liberty is, we are to assume, swept away. Side note: Jake Gyllenhaal is really great in this popcorn summer movie from 2004.


    See the tsunami meets Statue of Liberty scene in The Day After Tomorrow.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

  • Cloverfield 16 of 16

    In Cloverfield, the Statue of Liberty does not do too well when having to battle a monster. I refuse to see this film because I am a giant coward. The clips I have seen freaked me out enough. 


    See the Statue of Liberty in Cloverfield.


    Image Credit: Wikimedia

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