In the Oscar-nominated movie ‘Green Book’, New Orleans Athletic Club becomes a YMCA in Macon, Georgia

NEW ORLEANS - In the five-time Oscar nominated movie Green Book, New Orleans, Louisiana becomes, for a cinematic moment or two,  Macon, Georgia.

That's because New Orleans, Louisiana is the right location to be Macon, Georgia in the movie.

And that's because as WGNO News with a Twist features guy Wild Bill Wood says, a location scout discovered it.

New Orleans has lots of location scouts.

One of them is John Johnston.

John is always walking.  Always talking.  Always taking pictures.  Always looking for the right location.

Wild Bill Wood asks, "are you naturally nosey?"

John Johnston answers, "oh yea, I ask questions."

John is a Hollywood location scout and manager. John is always searching New Orleans for perfect places.

Wild Bill asks, "will you actually go up to a stranger's house and knock on the door?"

John Johnston answers, "knock on the door, of course, at least 50 times a day, if I think it's the right house, I'll jump over a fence to knock on that door!"

John was not the location scout and manager for the film Green Book, but he knows when the folks from  Green Book knocked on New Orleans' door to film here, the Saenger Theater became Carnegie Hall in New York City.

John Johnston knows why, "in 1924 the Saenger Theater was built, Carnegie Hall was built in 1891, same architecture, same art deco style, it's perfect."

In Green Book, two guys on a road trip eventually need a place to pull off the road.

Wild Bill then asks John Johnston, "how do you transform the New Orleans Athletic Club, the NOAC into the Macon, Georgia YMCA?"

John says, "with a little Hollywood magic."

And a sign that says "YMCA" temporarily placed over the permanent letters on the club, NOAC.

Inside NOAC, the pool is in the movie Green Book, too.

John Johnston says, "the pool has all the architectural elements of a southern health club you want to see in a movie set in a southern town."

Wild Bill asks John Johnston, "how do you describe your job?"

John says without hesitating, "a glorified party planner."

You never know.

Next time, you hear a knock at your front door, it may be Hollywood calling.

And remember to watch the Oscars, the Academy Awards on WGNO ABC 26 on Sunday February 24.

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