Hollywood to descend upon Quincy

By Jack Encarnacao
The Patriot Ledger
February 5, 2011

Old high school building will be rented by Columbia Pictures to shoot movie

QUINCY — The city has reached an agreement with Columbia Pictures to rent out the old Quincy High School building for a movie shoot.

The interior of the vacant school, which is next to the new high school on Coddington Street, will be the setting for scenes that are tentatively scheduled to be filmed starting next month, said Christopher Walker, a spokesman for Mayor Thomas Koch.

The deal, signed by Koch and Columbia Pictures Industries Inc. of California, calls for the city to receive $80,000 in rental fees for use of the old high school from Feb. 2 until Aug. 26.

Koch will earmark the $80,000 to benefit the school department’s music program, Walker said.

A separate term of the deal allows Columbia to rent additional city property at a rate of $3,333 per day.

The agreement requires Columbia to obtain at least $1 million in liability insurance for the shoot. It also bars any party to the agreement from claiming damages.

Built in 1922, the old high school was targeted by the city for demolition this summer. It is unclear if those plans will have to change, Walker said, because it is unclear when the film crew will be finished shooting in the building.

According to the agreement, the movie to be filmed is titled “Here Comes the Boom.”

Movie industry media have tied that title to a movie that will star the comic actor Kevin James. James has shot several movies in Massachusetts, including scenes for the sleeper hit “Paul Blart: Mall Cop” at the South Shore Plaza in Braintree.

James said in an interview last year that he was scheduled to start work on a movie about a high school teacher who moonlights as a professional fighter in an effort to save the school’s music program.

The shoot would not be the first time Quincy has provided the backdrop to a Hollywood production.

Scenes for the Boston-based films “Gone Baby Gone” and “The Departed” were shot in the city’s quarries and shipyard. In 2009, actor Ben Affleck shot scenes for “The Company Men” on a residential street in Quincy Point.

Jack Encarnacao can be reached at jencarnacao@ledger.com.

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