Story Summary

Movies & TV in New Orleans and southeast Louisiana

Southeast Louisiana – and specifically New Orleans – has been dubbed “Hollywood South” because of all the movies and television shows filmed & recorded here.

Story Timeline
Previous Next
This story has 9 updates

Even though Lee Daniels’ move “The Butler” made $25 million over the weekend, some people are boycotting the movie.

Here’s a picture of veterans in Slidell protesting the movie because of Jane Fonda’s role in the movie.

Fonda plays Nancy Reagan in the historical drama, but to these veterans, she’s always be known as the Vietnam War protestor Hanoi Jane.

One of the most anticipated movies opens nationwide on Friday, but it starts playing in New Orleans theaters on Thursday!  That’s because “The Butler” was filmed here.

“The Butler” is about a White House butler who is a witness to civil rights history from the president’s perspective … and from his own perspective.

The action packed “2 Guns” was number one at the box office over the weekend, raking in more than $27 million.

The blockbuster movie was filmed in New Orleans. It stars Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg who play a pair of undercover agents whose bank robbery leads to all kinds of violence.

New Orleans is known for a lot things: music, food, drinks … you name it! But what makes this city so unique is all of our unusual characters.

WGNO photojournalist Alyson Titekmeyer introduces us to the actors behind the sitcom “Sunken City.” They’ve already raised $10,000 on Kickstarter to fund a first season, which they plan to release in October.


A familiar face to ABC television fans is landing in Hollywood South.

Actress Kate Walsh joined the cast of the thriller Dermaphoria being shot in New Orleans.

Production started on Sunday and is expected to last 19 days.

Walsh’s ABC credits include roles on Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice.

The reality show for former governor Edwin Edwards and his wife, Trina, will not make a June premier.

Originally the show was scheduled to make its debut on the A&E network earlier this year in the time slot following Duck Dynasty.

But network execs opted to delay The Governor’s Wife until perhaps this month.

Now a source close to the program says A&E is excited about the program and will definitely air it, but not this month, and no new premier date has been selected.

Film IndustryBy now you’ve probably seen one of several film crews in and around the New Orleans area.

But you may be surprised to hear casting directors are looking for someone like you.

Our Darian Trotter tells us how you can become a part of Hollywood South.

“I love you dad, but I can’t just ask you about sex,” actor Phillip Youman is heard practicing his lines. “I just can’t.”

This is how careers in the film and television industry are launched.

Given the large number of productions filmed in New Orleans, there are plenty of opportunities for beginner and experienced actors.

But experts say you can’t just show up for an audition.

“People think that they can walk right into this business and take the world by storm,” Producer-Director Tommye Myrick explained. “It doesn’t happen that way.”

“You may fit the look, but they want to know that you know what you’re doing when you get on set,” Actress and acting coach Jaqueline Fleming added. “That’s where training comes in.”

“You have to come to class, you have to apply yourself so that when you go into your movie auditions, the correct way to handle yourself,” actor and acting coach Trazi Lashawn said.

Meet some famed fast-trackers in New Orleans who are putting people to work.

Trazi Lashawn is an actor who’s opened a production company in The Esplanade Mall.

Jaqueline Fleming is an actress, and acting coach.

Her studio is located in Old Metairie.

Ms. Tommye Myrick is a director, producer, and acting coach.

Youman continued rehearsing, “How am I supposed to have that conversation with my dad, the reverend?”

Myrick’s group and one-on-one classes are offered at the JuJu Bag Cafe in Gentilly.

“Phillip what you’re not doing is thinking and it’s the thought process that makes it believable,” Myrick pointed out.

Our experts agree, it takes dedication and sometimes tough direction.

“It’s very humbling, and you have to be vulnerable to be an actor and open yourself up,” Fleming said.

“That’s why classes, workshops, are so critically important,” Myrick added.

Last year, the film industry pumped more than 531-million dollars into the local economy.

Experts say you don’t have to be a big name actor to claim your piece of the pie.

But before the head-shots, auditions, and call-backs you have to put in work.

“Anybody who thinks that they can act or like to act like they can act,” Leshawn said. “We want to make sure that they can.”

“They’re looking for just ordinary people and if you are an extraordinary talent who’s ordinary in your demeanor and your look, you have a very good chance of being cast,” Myrick said.

If you think you have what it takes to be on-camera in “Hollywood South” you can get started as early as Wednesday.

A FREE acting workshop is being offered Wednesday night between 6:30 and 9pm at the JuJu Bag Cafe, located at 5363 Franklin Avenue in Gentilly.

Contact information for the three acting coaches featured in this report is listed below:

Jaqueline Fleming, Jaq’s Acting Studio,

Trazi Lashawn, Best Motion pictures, (504) 800-4573 or

Tommye Myrick, The Juju Bag Cafe,

News with a Twist

“Duck Dynasty” stars in New Orleans

Louisiana’s reality show heroes brought their bushy beards and southern charm to New Orleans over the weekend to introduce a new member of the show! Another son – who doesn’t yet have a beard – will become part of “Duck Dynasty”! WGNO’s Blaire Arvin found that fans can never get enough.

Have you ever paid close attention to the food, while watching a movie?  Did you know a lot of time and effort goes into making that food look “movie-ready”.

Kendall’s Gensler’s job is to make sure the food is ready for it’s close-up.

“It’s very simple.  A food stylist prepares food for the camera.  Really it means that I set up food for the camera, motion pictures, commercials, video, or still photography,”  Gensler said.

As she works with Photographer, Ron Camalia at today’s shoot every detail counts.

“In still, you shoot towards the camera.  We build the food for the still camera.  In movies, we have to make sure the food is beautiful.  Everything has to be prepared 360-degrees, because we never know where the director will go,”  she said.

Kendall’s resume is impressive.  She has her own magazine, “Culinary Concierge”.  Her food styling work has been featured on HBO’s Treme, the Will Ferrell comedy, “The Campaign”, “Django Unchained” and most recently an Oscar Mayer bacon commercial.

“I had to cook over one thousand pounds of bacon on rods.  It was an experience,”  she said.

It’s a lot of work, but for Gensler it definitely has it’s perks.

“There was a moment during the filming of “Django Unchained”  when Jamie Foxx just started dancing with some of the girls in costumes and I saw Leo Dicaprio to my right.  It was just one of those wow moments,”  she said.

While working on ‘Django’ she prepared the T-bone steaks.

“The director, Quentin Tarantino had to approve the look of the plate.  Sometimes it’s very difficult to be a food stylist because you want your food to be front and center, and that’s not always the case.  Sometimes the food in the scenes gets put on the cutting room floor,”  Gensler said.

Her first foray into films was on the flick, “Abraham Lincoln:Vampire Hunter”.

Gensler said, “I had a friend who was working in the props department and they called me up and asked me if I wanted to help with the movie.”

There are many secrets to her craft.

“In this shrimp salad, I inserted florist wire.  Once they were cooked, I could bend them and have them stand up in the direction I want.  I put a green sponge in the salad to give it a blocking effect.  We can place the lettuce leaves around to build a nice mound up, as opposed to the lettuce falling flat,”  the New Orleans Native, Gensler, said.

When milk or cereal is called for they use glue and steaks are always real, just cooked differently.  Not all the food they use is edible either.

“You can see how it’s changed.  More and more, it’s becoming more realistic,”  she said.

In an ever-changing biz, she is proud to be part of Hollywood South’s premiere cuisine scene.

“A message I want to get out is we have very talented people here in New Orleans that can get the job done.”

To see more of Gensler’s work, here’s a link to her magazine: