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Local News

May 2, 2012

Marblehead's Piper Field set for Hollywood takeover

Crews to transform high school field for Adam Sandler movie

MARBLEHEAD — A New York Jets fan is taking over the high school's football field and installing an apparently massive tent with a swimming pool, tennis courts and buildings tucked inside.

But only through August.

The fan is movie star Adam Sandler, and the plan is for the town to rent Sgt. Christopher Piper Field to Columbia Pictures as a location for shooting his new movie "Grown Ups 2."

"The Piper Field is a very important part of the picture," Superintendent Gregory Maass told the School Committee at its last meeting.

Shooting is scheduled for July 2 through 20, though that could change, he warned.

"Then they'll remove the set between July 23 and Aug. 23," Maass said, explaining that he met Columbia executives out on the football field, to discuss the process, which is set to start within days.

The schools are promised a substantial payment in return, he said, but said no set amount had been determined yet. Maass indicated that the money is enough to allow the resurfacing of Piper Field with "some dollars that we can use for some other programs."

But it will mean disruption for some spring sports teams that use Piper Field, and that has some parents concerned. An informational meeting for the public is set for tonight at 7 p.m. at the Marblehead Community Center.

Piper Field isn't the only school property affected.

The Veterans Memorial Middle School on Pleasant Street will also be in pictures, with the back end doubling as the entrance to a hospital emergency room and the front typecast as part of the hero's old high school.

"We'll have to work with them related to timing," Maass said.

As of now, the middle school activity is planned for May 23 and 24.

"Our middle school students probably will ... find it interesting," he said.

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