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Local Little League players participate in Dundalk movie shoot

Local Little Leaguers came to Battle Grove Field in Dundalk to play extras in a new movie "All Square," starring actors from "House of Cards" and "The Wire."

Thirteen-year-old Chris Rolfes has been playing baseball for as long as he can remember, but he had never felt as nervous on the diamond as he did Sunday.

Rolfes joined dozens of Little League players and other young fans of the game at Battle Grove Field in Dundalk to play extras in the forthcoming movie "All Square," starring actors from "House of Cards" and "The Wire."

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"I've always wanted to be on TV or see myself in a film," Chris said. "I was nervous because I didn't want to mess up. I want to make the movie look good."

Temperatures approached 90 degrees. Families spread out in the park as th cameras rolled. Even after the crews called "cut" and took a lunch break, kids ran around playing catch and swinging bats.

Sarah Belzner, 31, attended the shoot with her 10-year-old son Michael.

"It's been hot," she said. "But it's fun watching the kids enjoy themselves."

The movie stars Michael Kelly, Doug Stamper on "House of Cards." His character is a bookie who befriends an ex-girlfriend's son and starts betting on Little League games.

"Its a nice little slice of life," Kelly said. "It's a feel good movie and its got a lot of laughs."

The writer, Timothy Brady, originally planned to set the movie in Delaware, but Kelly suggested he consider Baltimore, enabling him to bring members of the "House of Cards" crew onto the project.

Isiah Whitlock, who played Clay Davis on "The Wire," also stars in "All Square." "The Wire," like "House of Cards," was filmed in Baltimore and ran on HBO for five seasons.

"We have a very experienced crew," producer Jordan Foley said. "This is a smaller film, but because they love Michael and have off-time from 'House of Cards,' they said they'd come work with us."

Foley said he's glad Kelly proposed moving the story to Maryland.

"Dundalk really represented what we were going with in the film," he said.

Beyond Battle Grove Field, Foley said, the independent film is also shooting at local bars and homes. The producers plan to wrap up July 10. Foley anticipates the movie will come out in 2018.

"Dundalk has been incredibly welcoming," Kelly said. "Sometimes you do a movie somewhere and people are like, 'When are you guys gonna be done with that movie? You're on our block and keeping us up at night.' But here, everyone's been so lovely."

Community members who attended Sunday's shoot said taking part in a movie has been fun and educational. Many of the parents filled in as spectators.

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"It's been neat to see how things work and what goes into making a movie," said Amanda Sills, 36. Her 12-year-old son, Stephen Loidl, said he didn't expect filming to last so long, and require so many takes.

But even with the frequent stops and starts, Stephen said, being part of a movie is "one of the coolest things I've ever done."

Nick Doty, 12, said being in a movie turned out differently than he expected, but it was still "a lot of fun."

"When I grow up, I'll show my kids that I was in a movie," he said. "That'll be really cool."

For siblings Blanche and Max Brody, the shoot was special.

"I like playing ball and I like acting, so this is mixing the two into something I love," said 12-year-old Blanche. "It's unbelievable that I'm actually doing it."

Max, 10, who aspires to be on Broadway, also found it difficult to believe that he spent Sunday on a movie set.

"I thought this would happen one day," he said. "I just didn't think it would happen at this age.

"Follow your dreams and you will get there."

@TaliRichman

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