‘Anchorman 2’ turns downtown Atlanta into 1970s NYC

The Will Ferrell comedy “Anchorman 2” is like a party with a never-ending guest list, where everyone brings a plus-one.

The movie also starring Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, Dave Koechner, Christina Applegate, Harrison Ford, James Marsden and Kristen Wiig has been filming in Atlanta for months now, and has been steadily adding to its roster. (Hey, Will Smith. We see you, Nicole Kidman. Welcome to Atlanta, Liam Neeson. Is that you, Kanye West?)

After filming at Marietta Middle School a couple of weeks ago, the movie spent a week down on the coast, where Ferrell shared a scene with a fake shark off the St. Simons Island Pier. This week, the movie set up shop at Woodruff Park, turning Atlanta into 1970s-era New York City complete with yellow taxis the size of tanks, a poster featuring the late Mayor Ed Koch and a telephone booth. Remember those?

Our favorite prop, of course, is the newsstand chock full of thick, glossy magazines and newspapers with margins as wide as Ron Burgundy’s lapels. The sight of all that retro reading material made us nostalgic for those throwback wireless devices. Ah, well.

Security’s been pretty robust at previous filming locations, including the Silver Skillet and Olympic Flame restaurants, Peachtree Center and private homes in Inman Park and Buckhead. But it’s hard to keep too tight a lid on things when you’re filming right smack in the middle of downtown Atlanta. Still, the movie’s security people told us to beat it not long after I locked eyes on Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, two more recent additions. (Pffftt. It’s like they don’t know who we are or something.)

We’re told they’ll be filming all week. Stay classy, Atlanta!

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