You may be familiar with James Sanders' book Celluloid Skyline: New York and the Movies, which celebrated New York City's role in movies and is a must for any fan of New York, architecture, or film. But even if you haven't, you get a chance to experience it in beyond the pages: Starting tomorrow, Grand Central Terminal's Vanderbilt Hall will be the setting for a Celluloid Skyline exhibit. There will be huge "scenic backing" paintings from old films, film footage, artifacts, displays and more that will show NYC's role in production and as a "mythic city" of the movies. Here's a description:

[The exhibit] will also carry visitors into the dream city of the movies, through “immersive” elements that allow visitors to feel as if they are actually inhabiting the various environments of the filmic city – streets, skyscrapers, rooftops, theaters, waterfronts, interiors – allowing viewers to come away with a greater understanding not only of the moviemaking process, but of the urban character, texture and significance of the real city.

Along the way, the show will celebrate some of the greatest New York films ever made – from 42nd Street, Rear Window and King Kong to Ghostbusters, Annie Hall, Taxi Driver and Do the Right Thing – and highlight the work of generations of movie New Yorkers on both sides of the camera: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Marlon Brando, Audrey Hepburn, Woody Allen, Jimmy Cagney, Martin Scorsese, Spike Lee, Robert De Niro.

We're especially excited by the scenic backing paintings - one of the backdrops is the U.N. lobby (photograph) from North by Northwest!

Turner Classic Movies is also launching a program of movies to go along with the exhibit starting June 1; films include Grand Central Murder, On the Town, Batman Returns, The Naked City and The Fountainhead (yes, North by Northwest is one of the films, too). And here's Sanders' Celluloid Skyline website.