A League of Their Own celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. The tale of a women’s baseball league was a big hit and became a standout in the filmographies of its stars. The franchise received its own reboot series on Amazon this year, but what’s become of the original cast? Let’s find out.
Okay, Tom Hanks needs no explanation, but it’s important to note how important A League of Their Own was to his career. The story goes that Hanks hit it big with Big and he was set for life, but that’s not the case. With the exception of 1989’s Turner & Hooch, Hanks starred in plenty of bombs like Bonfire of the Vanities. A League of Their Own marked the start of an incredible run for him.
After Sleepless in Seattle and Philadelphia in 1993, Hanks truly had cemented his place among the Hollywood greats. Hanks most recently appeared in Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis alongside Austin Butler, but he has a few projects currently in development as well.
Madonna is, well, Madonna. She remains an icon and a tabloid topic these many years later. A League of Their Own was probably the peak of her commercial film career (at least as an actress—more on that in a moment), but we seriously doubt she would mind. In 1993, she was working with Abel Ferrara. You do not work with Ferrara to stay commercially viable.
However, her career is still booming: Madonna is currently celebrating the August 19th release of her compilation album FINALLY ENOUGH LOVE: 50 NUMBER ONES and co-writing and directing a biopic about her life.
Did you know Geena Davis wasn’t supposed to be in A League of Their Own? She only got the gig because Demi Moore got pregnant and was replaced by Madonna, causing Debra Winger to drop out. Davis was on an incredible streak of her own, having earned an Oscar for The Accidental Tourist and another nomination for Thelma & Louise. A League of Their Own was her last hit for some time.
Davis hasn’t stopped working. You can catch her in Pussy Island from Zoë Kravitz soon. Davis has made an incredible impact off the big screen with her humanitarian work. She’s an advocate for Title IX, gender equality in children’s media, and launched the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media. In 2019, she received the Academy’s Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award for her work.
Lori Petty was a hot commodity in 1991. She had just starred in the action classic Point Break the year before and would star in Tank Girl in 1995. She found steady work in the DC animated universe as Livewire, but her career would continue to blossom from there. Petty got a second big break in 2014 when she joined Orange is the New Black. She most recently starred in the hit film adaptation of the dystopian novel Station Eleven on HBO Max.
Rosie O’Donnell got her big break on Star Search. The comedian bopped between major projects like Sleepless in Seattle and The Flintstones before settling into the daytime talk show scene. In its prime, The Rosie O’Donnell Show was only rivaled by The Oprah Winfrey Show. O’Donnell infamously joined The View in 2006 before quitting amid major beef with co-host Elizabeth Hasselback. However, she returned for another year in 2014.
Today, O’Donnell is as in demand as ever. She’s one of the only original actors returning for the Amazon reboot of A League of Their Own. She’s also scored a lead role in the Showtime reboot of American Gigolo, and she was all over the Netflix hit series Russian Doll.
1992 was a massive year for Anne Ramsay. On top of A League of Their Own, she starred in the NBC sitcom Mad About You. She appeared in 93 episodes of the series and returned for the 2019 reboot. Like O’Donnell, Ramsay appeared on The L Word.
Ramsay continued to receive steady work in early-2000s guest roles on TV shows such as Dexter, Six Feet Under, and The Secret Life of the American Teenager. Ramsay continues to book steady work, scoring a spot as Greta Van Susteren in Bombshell and a recurring role on the canceled NBC series Ordinary Joe.
Did you know Bill Pullman was in A League Of Their Own? He played Davis’ husband Bob Hinson. This arrived a few years after the two starred in The Accidental Tourist. Pullman’s most famous role came as President Thomas Whitmore on Independence Day. Pullman was called for the sequel in 2016. You can see Pullman performing alongside David Harbour in the West End production Mad House.
Jon Lovitz was fresh off a successful stint on Saturday Night Live when he appeared in A League of Their Own. In 1994, he voiced Jay Sherman in The Critic, a cult classic animated series from the creators of The Simpsons. When his best friend Phil Hartman tragically died, Lovitz replaced him on the sitcom NewsRadio. Today, Lovitz is an entity unto himself who regularly stars in loads of projects every year. Staying friends with Adam Sandler has also guaranteed Lovitz guest roles in films like The Wedding Singer and Grown Ups 2.
Director Penny Marshall received a Best Picture nomination for A League of Their Own. The Laverne & Shirley star remains one of the most successful female directors of all time. Marshall retired from directing films in 2001, but continued to produce films, including Bewitched and Cinderella Man in 2005. Late in her life, Marshall had guest roles in shows like Portlandia, and Mulaney, demonstrating the impact she had on a whole generation of comedians. Marshall died in 2018.