Geena Davis Hosts ‘A League of Their Own’ Reunion During Bentonville Film Festival
Geena Davis organized a League of Their Own reunion game during the second annual Bentonville Film Festival on Sunday. The actress co-founded the event last year, which champions women and “diverse voices in media,” according to its website. The fictional Rockford Peaches of the 1992 hit film gathered around the pitcher’s mound at Arkansas’ Arvest Ballpark nearly 25 years after the film’s debut.
In addition to Davis, Yahoo notes that the following Rockford Peaches teammates were also on hand: Megan Cavanaugh (Marla Hooch), Ann Cusack (Shirley Baker), Tracy Reiner (Betty “Spaghetti” Horn), Anne Ramsay (Helen Haley), Patti Pelton (Marbleann Wilkenson), and Freddie Simpson (Ellen Sue Gotlander). Some of the ladies can be seen in the photo below taken with Gina Casey, a former member of the All American Girls Professional Baseball League, who threw out the first pitch.
“It’s 20 years later and we’re still playing,” Pelton told the Democrat-Gazette. “It’s great to be here. It’s a gift that keeps on giving.”
The game was played between teams composed of celebrities, local business executives, and athletes. According to Arkansas Online, Davis managed the blue team who defeated the red team, managed by Cavanaugh, 20-4. Luckily, the losers didn’t cry, but if they had, then no doubt they would’ve felt the spirit of Tom Hanks reminding them that “there’s no crying in baseball,” as he told the Peaches in the classic scene from the film. Relive the moment via the YouTube clip below.
A League of Their Own is based on the actual All-American Girls Professional Baseball League of the 1940s. The film co-stars Madonna and Rosie O’Donnell, who attended last year’s softball game. In addition to leading the cast of the film, Davis is also known for her roles in The Fly, Beetlejuice, Thelma & Louise, for which she earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress along with her co-star Susan Sarandon, and The Accidental Tourist, for which she won the 1988 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. In 2005, Geena won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama for her role in Commander in Chief.
During a recent chat with Good Morning America, Davis stressed the importance of supporting projects that open more doors for women to secure big screen roles.
“The advice I have for people in my position or the people who are going to be the star of a movie or have clout, it’s very easy to impact change without offending anybody or anything,” Davis said.
She also spoke about her mission to increase the voice of women in media with her Bentonville Film Festival, which guarantees winners distribution in AMC theaters and on cable networks Starz and Lifetime.
“The whole goal is to champion women and diversity in all forms of media so we didn’t want to have a festival … and have it be like let’s look at some nice movies that were directed by women or minorities or whatever,” Davis said. “We want it to be very impactful and proactive.”
— Variety (@Variety) May 6, 2016
“One of the things we’re able to do which is unheard of in film festivals in the world is prizes are guaranteed distribution so they’ll be in AMC theaters, on Walmart shelves, they’ll be on Starz or Lifetime on TV.” said Davis. “I had a filmmaker tell me the other day that getting distribution is harder than making a movie so it’s a huge component to get your movie out in the theaters.”
She also pointed out that the commercial success of recent female-driven movies is “not enough” to say there has been a significant change in the industry.
Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon will receive the Women in Motion award from Kering and the Cannes Film Festival on May 15, Variety reports. The Oscar-winning actresses are celebrating the 25th anniversary of their cult film Thelma & Louise.
[Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP Images]