Johnny made his acting debut in 2004, with the short film 'Then Hereafter,' as the younger version of the character ‘Eric.’ Two years later, he moved to Los Angeles, where he bagged his next short film, 'My Ambition' by 'k2 Productions.'
The audition notice for 'My Ambition' had a misprint that said they required a female lead. Despite this, Johnny approached the production house, and he was called for the audition. The producers were impressed with Jonny's acting skills. Hence they did not rectify the mistake in the ad and cast him to play ‘Jules Walters,’ a student who got expelled from school because of his unhealthy obsession with vampires. Soon, Johnny even got his first manager.
The following year, Johnny branched out to TV and appeared as ‘Matt McCrary’ in an episode of the 'CBS' crime drama 'Numbers,' titled 'Killer Chat.' Following this, he made his first appearance in a full-length feature film. Johnny was cast as ‘Dylan Baxter’ in the 2007 fantasy–disaster–comedy 'Evan Almighty.'
Johnny played a germaphobic named ‘Paul’ in the 2007 supernatural horror 'Boogeyman 2.' He had a brief role in the 2008 independent drama film 'Trucker.' That year, Johnny had a prominent role in the superhero neo-noir 'The Spirit.' He played the younger ‘Denny Colt’ (the adult version was played by Gabriel Macht), an ambitious former cop who gets killed while on duty.
Johnny was cast opposite Emma Roberts, as ‘Dave,’ a young local pet store manager, in the 2009 family comedy film 'Hotel for Dogs,' which was an adaptation of Lois Duncan's 1971 novel of the same name. Following this, he appeared as ‘Ryan Brewer’ in the drama film 'The Greatest,' which was screened at the 2009 'Sundance Film Festival,' and as ‘Chip Dove’ in the supernatural horror/dark comedy 'Jennifer's Body.'
Johnny played the younger version of the fictional character ‘Neil Nordegraf,’ a 20-year-old bass guitarist and the biggest fan of the fictional band 'Sex Bob-Omb,' in the 2010 action–comedy film 'Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.' Johnny played a real-life character for the first time in the mystery historical drama 'The Conspirator.' He portrayed John Harrison Surrat Jr., who was accused co-plotting US President Abraham Lincoln's kidnap and was later suspected of his assassination.
In the 2011 'HBO' drama film 'Cinema Verite,' Johnny was seen as ‘Kevin Loud.’ He portrayed the teenage version of Chandler Canterbury's character, ‘Kelsey Patterson,’ in the comedy–drama film 'A Bag of Hammers.' He was seen in the supporting role of ‘Billiam Willing-ham,’ a 'Sagan High' student who dies of HFS, in the 2012 buddy cop action–comedy film '21 Jump Street.'
Johnny was seen depicting the emotions of a closeted high-school quarterback named ‘Brad Hayes’ in the 2012 coming-of-age drama film 'The Perks of Being a Wallflower.' Moving to TV, he appeared in an episode of the 'CBS' procedural drama 'Elementary.'
Johnny was seen as ‘Dodge Trask’ in the 2013 TV movie 'Blink.' Following this, he played ‘Cameron Mitchell’ in the romantic comedy 'The To Do List' and made a cameo appearance in the music video of Drake's single 'Hold On, We're Going Home.'
In 2014, Johnny played young adventurer and writer Jack London in the first scripted series of 'Discovery Channel,’ 'Klondike.' The three-part miniseries was based on the “Klondike Gold Rush” (mass migration) that happened in the 1890s. He again played a real-life character in the 2015 comedy 'Frank and Cindy,' which was based on a true story. Johnny portrayed GJ Echternkamp, the filmmaker who also directed the movie. He was also seen in the docudrama thriller film 'The Stanford Prison Experiment.'
Johnny had a cameo as ‘Erik Barsetto,’ ‘Sophia Marlowe's (played by Britt Robertson) love interest, in an episode of the 'CBS' legal and political drama 'The Good Wife.' In 2016, he appeared as ‘Benjamin Davis’ in the thriller 'Transpecos,' as ‘Monty Fagan’ in the comedy–drama 'Dreamland,’ as ‘Hopper Gibson’ in the sports drama 'The Phenom,’ and as sex therapist ‘Dr. Peter Newmans’ in the comedy–drama 'The Late Bloomer.'
Johnny was also cast in the main role of ‘Shane’ in the 'Netflix' comedy 'Girlboss.'
Family & Personal Life
Johnny was in a relationship with Emma Watson, whom he had met on the set of 'The Perks of Being a Wallflower.' According to sources, in September 2011, the two enjoyed a romantic getaway in New York. Moreover, Emma asked Johnny to move to England when she joined the ‘University of Oxford.' Unfortunately, Johnny could not move to England because of his professional commitments, and this, apparently, caused their break-up.
Johnny had also dated actor Leonie Kranzle back in 2009.
Johnny is of English and Scots-Irish descent. His family hails from Mississippi.