Amazon is developing a TV adaptation of the Penny Marshall classic A League Of Their Own. A fictional account of the real-life, pioneering All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, the original A League of Their Own was a success with both critics and at the box office. And Tom Hanks' performance as manager Jimmy Dugan, buoyed by the iconic "There's no crying in baseball!" scene, helped make the movie a timeless addition to sports movies.
Amazon's version of the series, however, will not be based on the same characters from the original A League of Their Own; it will be a half-hour comedic series and a modern re-imagining of the classic story, but still based on the same league, which existed from 1943-1954. Though there's still a long way to go before the series hits screens, the first batch of details have now been revealed.
Related: 10 Most Inspirational Sports Movies
THR reports that Amazon will distribute A League of Their Own while Sony produces. It will be written and co-executive produced by Will Graham, who writes and directs for Amazon's original series Mozart in the Jungle, and Abbi Jacobson, who is best known for her performance as Abbi on Comedy Central's Broad City. Jacobson, however, will not act in the show should it be ordered to series. THR added that Amazon will make a decision after a "mini-writer's room" is assembled and delivers a set of scripts. Here's the official synopsis for the show:
"A League of Their Own is a half-hour comedy infusing the warmth, humor and DNA of the classic film, while taking a contemporary spin on the stories of the women surrounding the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. The show will begin with the formation of the league in 1943 and follows the Rockford Peaches, season to season as they struggle to keep the team alive through close games, injuries, late night bar crawls, sexual awakenings, not crying and road trips across a rapidly changing United States. The series dives deeper into the issues facing the country while following a ragtag team of women figuring themselves out while fighting to realize their dreams of playing professional baseball."
The original movie centered around the sibling rivalry between sisters Dottie (Geena Davis) and Kit (Lori Petty), the latter of which was eventually traded from the Rockford Peaches to the Racine Belles. Graham and Jacobson reportedly reached out to both Davis and Marshall to get their blessing to make the series, which will still explore similar themes of "prejudice and equality, among others."
It's worth noting that this is actually the second attempt to turn A League of Their Own into a TV series. CBS produced a short-lived adaptation of the movie in 1993, directed by Marshall and starring Megan Cavanagh and Tracy Reiner reprising their movie roles as Marla and Betty. The series lasted only three episodes. Based on the description of the new series, though, it will find ways to pay homage to the original movie and the famous crying scene. But it will mostly be a fresh take on the story, with the episodic format giving it a chance to explore the new characters even deeper.
The biggest challenge for Amazon's take on A League of Their Own will be to create similarly memorable characters from scratch. Matching or improving upon the performances and chemistry of Hanks, Davis, Petty, and even Madonna and Rosie O'Donnell, is a tall task. The show will inevitably be compared to those characters. But Amazon is swinging for the fences in hopes that Graham and Jacobson can rekindle the original's magic.