A League of Their Own
|A League of Their Own|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Penny Marshall|
|Produced by||Elliot Abbott
|Screenplay by||Lowell Ganz
|Story by||Kelly Candaele
|Music by||Hans Zimmer|
|Edited by||George Bowers|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
A League of Their Own is a 1992 American comedy-drama film that tells a fictionalized account of the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL). Directed by Penny Marshall, the film stars Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, Madonna, and Lori Petty. The screenplay was written by Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel from a story by Kelly Candaele and Kim Wilson.
In 2012, A League of Their Own was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
In 1988, Dottie Hinson attends the opening of the new All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL) exhibit at the Baseball Hall of Fame. She sees many of her former teammates and friends, prompting a flashback to 1943.
When World War II threatens to shut down Major League Baseball, candy magnate and Cubs owner Walter Harvey persuades his fellow owners to bankroll a women's league. Ira Lowenstein is put in charge, and Ernie Capadino is sent to recruit players. Capadino goes to an industrial-league softball game in rural Oregon and likes what he sees in Dottie, the catcher for a local dairy's team. Dottie does not take Capadino's offer, preferring to live the simple life she has in Oregon while waiting for her husband Bob to come back from the war. Dottie is convinced, however, by her sister and teammate Kit Keller.
Dottie and Kit head out to Harvey Field in Chicago for the tryout. There they meet a pair of New Yorkers, taxi dancer "All the Way" Mae Mordabito and her best friend in former bouncer Doris Murphy, along with soft-spoken right fielder Evelyn Gardner, illiterate and shy left fielder Shirley Baker, pitcher and former Miss Georgia Ellen Sue Gotlander, Colorado coach's daughter second baseman Marla Hooch, and first baseman Helen Haley, a native of Saskatchewan. They and eight others are selected to form the Rockford Peaches, while 48 others are split among the Racine Belles, Kenosha Comets, and South Bend Blue Sox.
The Peaches are managed by Jimmy Dugan, a former marquee Cubs slugger who initially treats the whole thing as a joke. The league attracts little interest at first. With a Life magazine photographer attending a game, Lowenstein begs the players to do something spectacular. Dottie obliges when a ball is popped up behind home plate, catching it while doing a split. The resulting photograph makes the magazine cover. A publicity campaign draws more people to the ballgames, but the owners remain unconvinced. As the Peaches establish themselves as the class of the league, Dottie and Kit's sibling rivalry intensifies and Kit is traded to the Peaches' rival, the Racine Belles.
The Peaches end the season qualifying for the league's World Series, but just before the end of the season Betty "Spaghetti" Horn, the team's utility player, is informed that her husband George was killed while fighting in the Pacific Theater. Later that evening Dottie receives a surprise when Bob, who has been serving in Italy, returns home after being discharged from the Army. The following morning, Jimmy discovers that Dottie is returning to Oregon with Bob as the team is getting set to leave for the World Series. He tells her she will regret her decision.
The Peaches and Belles meet in the World Series, which reaches a seventh and deciding game. Dottie, having reconsidered on the drive back to Oregon, is in uniform for the finale for the Peaches while Kit is the starting pitcher for the Belles. With the Belles leading by a run in the top of the ninth, Dottie drives in the go-ahead run. Kit manages to come through, however, and she scores the winning run by knocking her sister over at the plate to give the championship to Racine. The sellout crowd convinces Harvey to give Lowenstein the owners' support. After the game, the sisters reconcile before Dottie leaves to raise a family.
Back to the present (1988), Dottie is reunited with several other players, including Kit, whom she has not seen in several years. The fates of several of the characters are revealed: Jimmy, Bob, and Evelyn have died, while Marla has been married to Nelson, a man she met in a bar, for over 40 years. The original Peaches sing a team song composed by Evelyn and pose for a group photo.
- Tom Hanks – Jimmy Dugan (manager)
- Geena Davis – Dorothy "Dottie" Hinson (#8, catcher/assistant manager)
- Madonna – "All the Way" Mae Mordabito (#5, center field)
- Lori Petty – Kit Keller (#23, pitcher)
- Rosie O'Donnell – Doris Murphy (#22, third base)
- Anne Ramsay – Helen Haley (#15, first base)
- Megan Cavanagh – Marla Hooch (#32, second base)
- Freddie Simpson – Ellen Sue Gotlander (#1, shortstop/pitcher)
- Tracy Reiner – Betty "Spaghetti" Horn (#7, left field/relief pitcher)
- Bitty Schram – Evelyn Gardner (#17, right field)
- Renée Coleman (credited as Renee Coleman) – Alice "Skeeter" Gaspers (#18, left field/center field/catcher)
- Ann Cusack – Shirley Baker (#11, left field)
- Robin Knight – Linda "Beans" Babbitt (shortstop)
- Patti Pelton – Marbleann Wilkinson (second base)
- Kelli Simpkins – Beverly Dixon (#4, outfield)
- Connie Pounds-Taylor – Connie Calhoun (Outfield)
On MLB Network's Costas at the Movies in 2013, director Penny Marshall talked about her initial interest in Demi Moore for the part of Dottie Hinson, saying: "Demi Moore, I liked, but by the time we came around, she was pregnant."
- Jon Lovitz – Ernie Capadino, AAGPBL scout
- David Strathairn – Ira Lowenstein, AAGPBL general manager
- Garry Marshall – Walter Harvey, candy bar mogul and AAGPBL founder
- Julie Croteau – Helen Haley (baseball double for Anne Ramsay)
- Lynn Cartwright – Older Dottie
- Bill Pullman – Bob Hinson, Dottie's husband
- Janet Jones – Racine pitcher
- Téa Leoni – Racine first base
- Don S. Davis – Charlie Collins, Racine coach
- Eddie Jones – Dave Hooch, Marla's father
- Mark Holton – Adult Stillwell Gardner. He attends the Peaches' reunion at the Baseball Hall of Fame on behalf of his mother who had died.
- Pauline Brailsford – Miss Cuthburt, Rockford chaperone
Production and reception
Discussing the skirts they wore playing baseball in the film, Geena Davis said on MLB Network's "Costas at the Movies" in 2013, "Some of our real cast, from sliding into home, had ripped the skin off their legs. It was nutty."
The film was released on July 1, 1992 and was #1 by its second weekend (July 10–12). It was a commercial success, making $107 million in the United States (and an additional $25 million worldwide) on a $40 million budget, and was well received by critics.
A television series based on the film aired on CBS in April 1993, with Garry Marshall, Megan Cavanagh, Tracy Reiner, and Jon Lovitz reprising their roles. It was quickly cancelled.
|A League of Their Own
Music From The Motion Picture
|Soundtrack album by various artists|
|Released||June 30, 1992|
|Singles from A League of Their Own|
A League of Their Own soundtrack was released on CD and cassette tape by Columbia Records on June 30, 1992. The album peaked at #159 on the US Billboard 200 album chart on July 25, 1992. Although Madonna contributed "This Used to Be My Playground" to the film, featured over the closing credits, her recording was not included on the soundtrack album for contractual reasons.
- "Now and Forever" – Performed by Carole King
- "Choo Choo Ch'Boogie" – Performed by The Manhattan Transfer
- "It's Only a Paper Moon" – Performed by James Taylor
- "In a Sentimental Mood" – Performed by Billy Joel
- "Two Sleepy People" – Performed by Art Garfunkel
- "I Didn't Know What Time It Was" – Performed by James Taylor
- "On the Sunny Side of the Street" – Performed by The Manhattan Transfer
- "Flying Home" – Performed by Doc's Rhythm Cats
- "Life Goes On" – Performed by Hans Zimmer
- "The Final Game" – Performed by Hans Zimmer
- "The All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Song" – Performed by The Rockford Peaches
With 2012 marking the 20th year since the film's release, A League of Their Own was released as a 20th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray on October 16, 2012.
Forty-seven former players of the AAGPBL reunited in New York to celebrate the film and the real women who inspired it. Events included a trip to Cooperstown for a special program at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, reminiscent of the film's final scene depicting members of the AAGPBL and family coming together to witness the honoring of the Women's Professional Baseball League. The reunion wrapped up with a game of softball held at Syracuse's Alliance Bank Stadium.
Former players also made an appearance at Bosse Field in Evansville, Indiana on June 6, 2012, where many of the film's game scenes were filmed. The event included an outdoor screening of the film as well as a scene-setting display of cars featured in the film. In addition to Bosse Field, the production used Huntingburg, Indiana's League Stadium, another Southwestern Indiana field older than Bosse that was renovated for the film.
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