Kylie McGovern, Editor
Beginning the week of September 5 2021, film crew set up around and inside the TruMark Financial Center and the surrounding areas to film the movie “Hustle” starring Adam Sandler. La Salle students gathered around the area and the excitement of the film to catch a glimpse of Sandler and his co-stars like Queen Latifah, Robert Duvall, Ben Foster, Juancho Hernangomez, Jordan Hull, Maria Botto, Ainhoa Pillet and Kenny Smith. IMDb describes “Hustle” as a movie featuring “a washed-up basketball scout discovers a phenomenal street ball player while in China and sees the prospect as his opportunity to get back into the NBA.”
Filming for the movie began in October of last year and has taken place in areas around Philadelphia such as Coatesville Area High School, Center City Philadelphia, Market Street, the Italian Market, Manayunk and South Philadelphia. La Salle was the ideal location to film the movie because of the easy access to both the indoor and outdoor basketball courts. There were signs throughout La Salle’s campus directing people towards the set, which was located inside and outside of Tom Gola Arena near Founders Hall, on Olney Avenue and Wister Street, and near the Blue and Gold Commons. In addition to this, parking notices began to show up on Aug. 30, which stated, “Beginning this Thursday, Sept. 2, a large multi-day event will limit or prohibit parking in certain University-owned parking lots. Please see important information below regarding which lots will be affected and where you can access parking throughout the entirety
of the event.” This parking lot was then filled with trailers, cars, craft service trucks and tents to support and keep the movie’s cast and crew comfortable.
During Filming, the sidewalk between the St. Miguel Court townhouses and the TruMark Financial Center was packed with students waiting between classes to see the star. September 9 was Sandler’s birthday and students gathered about the set with signs and balloons. While waiting, Claire Ortiz, a sophomore, said “I was able to connect with the other students waiting and make friends with people I would not have met before bonding over our mutual love for Adam Sandler.” Students even waited in the rain to see Sandler on his 55th birthday. Later that afternoon, the La Salle students who waited to see Sandler were able to sing him “Happy Birthday.” Honored and surprised, Sandler filmed and posted the video of everyone singing to him on his Instagram account @adamsandler.
This video now has over two million views and over five hundred thousand likes. Unfortunately, some students missed seeing Sandler. Sophomore Grace McKenna said “I didn’t actually see him. I just waited out in the rain for a while.” But, some students were fortunate enough to meet Sandler and his bulldog Bagel. Bagel ran into the crowd and the students waiting got to pet him. In addition to the excitement of the students, Sandler himself enjoyed his time on 20th and Olney. A crew member reported to the crowd that Sandler “loves your campus.”