Chante Adams asked how do I throw a baseball? For her, she has a league of their own

Chante Adams asked how do I throw a baseball? For her, she has a league of their own ...

Chante Adams was surprised when she first received an email to audition for a TV reboot of A League of Their Own. Adams says she was surprised because I don't remember women who looked like me being on that team.

A League of Their Own, a 1992 film about the formation of the Rockford Peaches and the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League in the 1940s, had no black actors in its main cast, let alone a Black character that Adams could play. It was 2019, at the time, so I was like, It's 2019. I guess gotta add diversity.

After reading the script, she realized that the remake was not a remake at all, but a brand-new story with new characters and themes. I hate doing things I havent done before, and Ive seen A League of Their Own, so I decided not to do it again. Its wonderful and beautiful as it is, and it should always be.

Maxine Max Chapman, a skilled pitcher who isnt allowed to play for the Peaches because she is Black, and is rejected from the local mixed-race team because she is a woman, is the protagonist. She says it was a revelation before the A League of Their Own series which premiered on Amazon Prime Video on August 12.

I am a Black woman who is attempting to break through male-dominated and white-dominated industries.

Adams first audition for the role of Carson Shaw, the Peaches catcher, was in front of makers Will Graham and Abbi Jacobson, who also starred in the program. Adams recalls that she only watched a few minutes of a video that showed how to throw a baseball. Another day after that, her agent said the makers wanted to give her a straight offer. She was like, You want to do it? I was like, Im gonna do it.

Max, a queer Black woman and a lifelong baseball player, attempts to enter the professional leagues despite her overprotective mother's constant rejection for her race and gender. We see the problems that the Peaches face and those white women and white-passing women, but she doesn't give up. That's the beauty of her.

Adams, a Black woman on the set of the film, understands what it's like to hear no for the color of her skin. Of course, they cant blatantly say no because it's 2022. It's like, Were you going for a different outfit or were you going for a different style, Adams says. Her first experience in this industry was when she was treated differently than her white male co-star, and I was shut down immediately as if my voice wasn't heard or it

Adams was pushed to advocate for herself and others who resembled her, but also for Black directors, writers, and other creatives behind the scenes. That's what I'm proud of as a result of this series. Every race, every gender you see on camera is reflected in our writers room, in every department. That was something our producers were passionate about.

Adams talked to StyleCaster about her time in A League of Their Own, her quest to become a professional baseball player, and what she expects from Max in season 2.

How would you describe how the A League of their Own program differs from the movie?

We are not remaking the film. Were just expanding the universe of A League of Their Own. This time, we are including a lot of forgotten voices that Penny Marshall was unable to highlight in her 1992 classic. It's also true of what the time period was like. We're not trying to rewrite history in any way to make it politically correct and appropriate for the now. What we're trying to do is to keep things as authentic as possible.

Carson and Max's journeys in A League of Their Own are mirrored in a sort of league.What do you think Carson and Max are similar and different?

Max and Carson are quite similar in the way that they are at this critical point in their lives. Carson has moved away. Max is in a completely different situation and stage with new people. They are both able to identify with her because, of course, she is a queer person. They are both willing to listen to her. Its important to highlight what you want to say about Max and Carson.

When we as Black people excel in the acting profession, it does not mean much when the people behind the camera do not reflect this.

Max's sexuality is a bit slower to disclose than Carson's queerness from the first episode.What did you think of learning Max was also queer?

I was like, Hell, yeah. From the start, I was hooked on the program three years ago. Instead, which I think is better, is a big thing towards the end of episode 2. With Pose and P-Valley, I want to be authentic of the time period and that queer Black representation needs to be shown on screen.

At the end of episode 5, Max cuts her hair in a powerful moment.What do you think Max's hair represents?

To film, it was a challenge. With every outfit you wear, its not a new character, but a new moment. Changing my wig, we moved to that short wig. It was a big turning point for Max because it represented her letting go of the woman she always wanted to be. She wants to find a world where she can do it.

Rosie ODonnell, who played in the original A League of Their Own, makes a cameo appearance towards the end of the season.What was it like to meet her?

Rosie ODonnell was never met until three weeks ago. Because we shot the episode so separately, I never get to work with the Peaches' guest actors on their side. She's hilarious, funny, and everything you'd expect her to be. But just having her on the program and having her blessing and all of the original cast is enough.

What was the experience like during the game?

Baseball isn't easy; it's tough! We forgot we were going to film something at the same time. It just felt like summer camp, like we were a baseball team. Through her organization Baseball For All, all of our coaches were female baseball players. That was really cool.

Maxs' story should continue in season 2, according to you?

I want a second season. Please, Amazon! There are so many more stories to tell. In season 1, Max is the only Black woman playing baseball, but lets make them bigger. Maybe it isn't what she intended it to be or maybe she's just enjoying it. I want to see Max on a baseball team, playing baseball and playing the game.

A League of Their Own is now available for download on Prime Video. Here's how to have it available for free.

Credits:

George Chinsee, a photographer, is the subject of a photo contest.

Jennifer Austin is a stylist.

Keita Moore's Makeup: Keita Moore

Naivasha's hair is a natural.

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