Hollywood comes again to Airline Motors

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 5, 2004


Staff Reporter

LAPLACE – If you didn’t know any better, you would think you were on a main street in Iowa during Christmas season if you entered Airline Motors on Tuesday.

The filming of the motion picture, “Glory Road,” by Bruckheimer Productions for Walt Disney Pictures, was in full swing inside the eatery as temperatures outside measured 83 degrees.

The interior of the business, which had been closed, was remodeled to capture the look of a 1960’s diner situated in the northern state.

Stools at the counter area were polished to a high sheen, and those inside reflected the signs of the times.

The one-day shoot in LaPlace was one of three other stops throughout Louisiana scheduled for the filming. New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Hammond also were chosen as locations before the film crew and cast travels to El Paso, Texas.

The special effects of making snow took place late Tuesday morning, and the filming was completed by the end of the day, according to Claire Cooper, unit publicist.

The restaurant has had a long life on Airline Highway, and was once ‘the’ place to go for a good meal, according to some locals. But when Interstate 10 was constructed, much of the drive-by tourist business was lost. After that time, many businesses along Airline Highway suffered, they added.

Other movie production companies have used the restaurant in recent years, most notably filming scenes for ‘Monster Ball,’ starring Halle Berry.

The motion picutre describes the story of Don Haskins, a

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Texas Western College coach who was named to the Hall of Fame.

The white coach led his basketball team, with all African-Americans in his starting lineup, to the 1966 NCAA Championship. As an underdog team, they took the country by storm and surprised everyone.

‘Glory Road’ is due for release in 2005.

Due to the era of the movie’s theme, traffic on Airline Highway was interrupted at various times throughout the morning. The vehicles used in the movie were 1960 and under models, so the newer ones traveling by on the highway would have interrupted the scenes. Vehicles were re-routed to East Fifth Street and River Road.

Although Airline Motors Restaurant has been shuttered for some time, owners David Montegut and Gerri Terrio plan to re-open for business this fall.