8 Times Cornell Appeared On The Silver Screen

In addition to being the number one source of Lockheed Martin and Goldman Sachs employees, Cornell is also a veritable pop culture icon! Check out these 9 films that’ll make you proud to be Corny.


The White Lotus (2021)

In this HBO comedy-drama, the character Shane Patton, who is spotted wearing Cornell merch, plays the most charitable Dyson Business School graduate. 


The Martian (2015)

Okay, not 100% sure about this one, but the titular Martian is a plant scientist, and we’ve got like 8 different greenhouses on campus. He’s got to be connected on LinkedIn. Plus, he’s surprisingly okay with not seeing other human beings for years, so he’s at least an alum.


Untitled Phase 6 Marvel Film (2025)

Rumor has it that Kevin “Well, That Just Happened” Feige has been eyeing Cornell for some time. The numerous “buildings under construction” are supposedly the X-Mansion, the Wakandan Embassy, broke Peter Parker’s shitty apartment, and the Death Star version 3 (trust me bro it’ll work this time), sealed by mountains of NDAs and cyanide pills.


Joker (2019)

Though no scenes were filmed at Cornell, it was an instrumental part of Joaquin Phoenix’s controversial acting methods nonetheless. In order to play the role of a deranged clown, Phoenix asked Cornell event planning what they would do if it rained.


Battle Royale (2000)

Believe it or not, this movie about students battling to the death was filmed entirely on North Campus at the beginning of a fall semester! Kinji Fukasaku was actually going to film a documentary on water treatment, but he happened to be holding his camera when he got into the line at Nasty’s at 11 PM for a milkshake, and the rest is history.


Stranger Things (2016)

Cornell’s scientific facilities were used as a stand-in for government bases. The Duffer brothers even oversaw installation of period-accurate asbestos into many campus buildings and, as a tribute to the show’s critical and commercial success, the university has yet to remove it. 


Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat (1895) 

Believe it or not, the first movie ever made is deeply tied to Cornell history! As the train roars towards the screen, frightening Parisians, a Cornell urban planning graduate student can be seen in the background trying to start a conversation about public train transport and walkable cities to anyone who will listen.


Neon Genesis Evangelion (1980)

This happened to my chem TA Greg.


Honorable mentions:Oldboy, The Room, BIOEE3920_Midterm_Project FINAL COPY.mov (1) and Anal Sluts Volume 67

Carlos Po, ’23

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