NIU library featured in ‘Candyman’ reboot


Northern Star File Photo

The sun sets on NIU’s Founder’s Memorial Library on Tuesday, June 23rd at 8:12 p.m.

By Kyron Lewis, Lifestyle Writer

DeKALB – The film “Candyman” was released by Universal Pictures on Aug. 27, and featured in the movie was NIU’s very own library, the Founder’s Memorial Library.  

The library was used to film a few scenes in the 2021 film, including the scene where the character Anthony McCoy, played by Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, is doing research about the urban legend of Candyman. 

Joe King, associate director of Institutional Communications, said he was contacted in late February of 2020 by a filming location scout.

“It was a location scout who had been to campus before and had just had checked out some of our buildings and she thought that we’d be a good fit,” King said. “They were looking for a state university library.” 

Cinematographers were brought in to inspect the area to make sure they could get good lighting and soon other crew was on campus to begin setting up and start filming, King said.

Filming took only one day, said Theresa Stack, director of programming. There was the library scene and reshoots of a laundromat scene with the assistance of green screen technology. Equipment was picked up by the crew the next day and taken back to Chicago. 

Filming primarily took place in Chicago in the North Park neighborhood in 2019. Several scenes utilize the old Cabrini-Green row houses. It is also the first feature film to shoot on location in Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art. The museum also provided the background for one of the earliest kills in the film, which used the creative landscape of the museum to its advantage. 

Locations in the Chicagoland area have been used in feature films before, most notably in recent years, the “Transformers” franchise and “The Dark Knight” trilogy.

NIU has many locations that could possibly be utilized for films in the future. This is due to various buildings having the aesthetic of different eras and styles to them. The possibilities are amazing to think about as NIU could gain more exposure and may be used again for a filming location in the future, possibly even a main setting in a major film.