Mr. Baseball


1h 40m 1992

Brief Synopsis

A slumping Major Leaguer is traded to a Japanese team.

Film Details

MPAA Rating
PG-13
Genre
Comedy
Romance
Sports
Release Date
1992
Production Company
Noriaki Minami; Scott Sherline
Distribution Company
Universal Pictures
Location
Los Angeles, California, USA; Nagoya, Japan; New York City, New York, USA; Tokyo, Japan

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 40m

Synopsis

A former World Series MVP is traded to a Japanese baseball team.

Crew

Hideo Akita

Construction Manager

Ian Baker

Director Of Photography

Jenny Barty

Production Coordinator

Lon Bentley

Hair

Lon Bentley

Makeup

Ian Bird

Best Boy

Dianne Blasco

Other

Carol Borden

Makeup

Bruce Botnick

Other

Jennifer Bronson

Costumes

Commander Alan Brown Usnr

Advisor

Ray Brown

Key Grip

James D. Brubaker

Unit Production Manager

Sandy Brundage

Negative Cutting

Peter Burgess

Sound Editor

Steve Burgess

Foley Mixer

Denny Caira

Transportation Coordinator

Talentino Caira

Transportation Captain

Jo Anne Carmichael

Production Assistant

Sterling Chow

Other

Graham Churchyard

Costume Supervisor

Colleen Clarke

Post-Production Supervisor

Cindy Clarkson

Assistant Sound Editor

Doug Claybourne

Producer

Andrew Marc Comins

Location Manager

Shawn Holly Cookson

Wardrobe Assistant

George Cory

Song

Alexander Courage

Original Music

Dianne Crittenden

Casting

Douglas Cross

Song

Tanya Sharp David

Adr Mixer

Doug Decinces

Consultant

Gerard Dery

Other

Joy Dickson

Casting Associate

Ron Dittman

Assistant Location Manager

Chunichi Dragons

Special Thanks To

Terrence E Dunn

Accounting Assistant

William J Durrell

Art Director

Mel Dykes

Costume Department

Robyn Elliott

Set Costumer

Mark Ellis

Assistant Editor

Steve Evans

Assistant Editor

Kathyrn Fenton

Sound Editor

Peter Fenton

Sound Re-Recording Mixer

Bruce Finlayson

Costume Designer

Chris Fleet

Electrician

Billy Frank

Props Assistant

John Frantz

Props Assistant

John Frazier

Special Effects Coordinator

Michael Fuller

Unit Manager

Carlos M Gallardo

Best Boy

Harry Garfield

Song Performer

John Gathright

Assistant

John Gazdik

Camera

Jeremy Gibbs

Editor

Cellin Gluck

Assistant Director

Garet Gluck

Assistant Editor

Jerry Goldsmith

Music

Chiaki Gozu

Grip

Steven Greenberg

Song

Catherine Grennan

Assistant Director

Joseph F Griffith

Production

Howard Grigsby

Unit Production Manager

Don Guest

Production Consultant

Kenneth Hall

Music Editor

Yoshie Hamada

Makeup

Masamitsu Hanaoka

Electrician

Barbara Harris

Adr Voice Casting

David Harrison

Dialogue Editor

Patricia Harrison

Assistant Camera Operator

James Harvey

Assistant Sound Editor

Edward S. Haworth

Production Designer

Rebecca Haworth

Art Assistant

Sean Haworth

Set Designer

Kazuoyoshi Hayashi

Electrician

Seiji Hayashi

Costumes

Phil Heywood

Foley Artist

Masato Hirai

Special Thanks To

James Hitchcock

Assistant Camera Operator

Dinah Holt

Makeup

Peter Honess

Editor

Tom Hopkins

Video Playback

Jennifer Hortin

Sound Editor

Ken Hoshino

Production Assistant

Tomoho Ichimura

Unit Manager

Kazuko Julie Igawa

Accounting Assistant

Megumi Igei

Wardrobe Assistant

Akihiro Iinuma

On-Set Dresser

Yoshiyuki Ikawa

Electrician

Kiri Inomata

Special Thanks To

Kiyoshii Inoue

Production Assistant

Kenji Ishida

Electrician

Tomoo Ito

Line Producer

Norihisa Itoh

Production Assistant

Naoko Iwata

Assistant

Ian Jones

Camera Operator

Bruce Joy

Assistant Editor

John Junkerman

From Story

Iwao Kaneda

Art Director

John Kao

Executive Producer

Seiko Kato

Production

Kazuhiko Katsube

Property Master

Shozo Katsuta

Special Thanks To

David Kelson

Sound

Hiroyuki Kimura

Carpenter

Satoshi Kitahara

Graphics

Emiko Koai

Other

Michie Kobayashi

Accounting Assistant

Yoshihiro Kobayashi

Assistant Camera Operator

Aghi Koh

Production Assistant

Shinji Komiya

Location Manager

Susumu Kondoh

Executive Producer

Kazuto Kunishige

Assistant Director

Mitsuhiro Kurokawa

Special Thanks To

Emilio Lari

Photography

Adam Lebow

Advisor

Leon Lee

Consultant

Edward Licht

Location Manager

Connie Lockwood

Assistant

Jeff Lograsso

Production Assistant

Gerry Long

Foley Artist

Richard Lougee

Consultant

Greg W Lowe

Adr

Tom Lupo

Stunt Coordinator

Gary Macheel

Sound Effects

Leigh Mackenzie

Assistant Camera Operator

Gary Macpherson

Production Coordinator

Kenichi Makino

Assistant Camera Operator

Joanne Mallows

Other

Yuriko Mameshiro

Accountant

Toshiaki Manki

Costume Supervisor

Lilene Mansell

Advisor

Hisao Maru

Assistant Producer

Shigeo Masubuchi

Unit Manager Assistant

Miho Matsuda

Props Assistant

Kiichi Matsui

Special Thanks To

Yukari Matsuoka

Production Assistant

Melton C Maxwell

Lighting Technician

David Mayreis

Wardrobe Assistant

Michael J Mcalister

Visual Effects Supervisor

Carla Mccloskey

Assistant Director

Monte Merrick

Screenplay

Noriaki Minami

Cable Operator

Shinji Minami

Electrician

Bernadene Morgan

Costume Designer

Bruce Moriarty

Assistant Director

Isao Morimoto

Other

Takami Morioka

Assistant Production Coordinator

Makoto Morishita

Assistant Director

Grace Morita

Assistant Production Coordinator

Margie Morris

Other

Mick Morris

Gaffer

Arthur Morton

Original Music

Paul Moyes

Best Boy

Paul Murphey

Video

Paul Murphey

Video Assist/Playback

Steve Murphy

Consultant

Kazukuni Mutoh

Other

Hagumu Nakagawa

Special Thanks To

Kazuo Nakamura

Unit Manager Assistant

Noboru Nakamura

Transportation Captain

Toshihiro Nakamura

Best Boy

Yuuki Nakamura

Best Boy

Kinya Nakano

Stunts

Takeshi Nakasu

Electrician

Hirotaka Nakayama

Transportation Captain

Katsumi Nakazawa

Art Director

Shingo Nasukawa

Extras Agent/Coordinator

Robert Newmyer

Producer

Glenn Newnham

Sound Editor

Natsuko Nezu

Production

Yutaka Nishijima

Production Assistant

Ukon Nishikawa

Special Thanks To

Katsuyoshi Nishitsuka

Stunts

Felicity Nove

Assistant

Felicity Nove

Post-Production Coordinator

Jennifer O'connell

Post-Production Accountant

Thompson O'sullivan

Assistant Director

Masao Ohkubo

Adr

Shuji Ohsaki

Production Assistant

Yuki Okada

Production Assistant

Donald Orlando

Accountant

David Orr

Color Timer

Martin Oswin

Foley Mixer

Shinichi Otsuka

Key Grip

Mary Patton

Script Supervisor

Aaron Pazanti

Camera Operator

Theo Pelletier

From Story

Paul Pirola

Foley Mixer

Todd A Provence

Stunt Man

Ron Purvis

Sound Re-Recording Mixer

Richard Rankin

Construction Coordinator

Cloudia Rebar

Set Decorator

Terry Rodman

Sound Editor

Terry Rodman

Sound Re-Recording Mixer

Vail Romeyn

Assistant Production Coordinator

Gary Ross

Screenplay

George Russell

Apprentice

Karen Saido

On-Set Dresser

Ikuko Saitoh

Wardrobe Assistant

Film Details

MPAA Rating
PG-13
Genre
Comedy
Romance
Sports
Release Date
1992
Production Company
Noriaki Minami; Scott Sherline
Distribution Company
Universal Pictures
Location
Los Angeles, California, USA; Nagoya, Japan; New York City, New York, USA; Tokyo, Japan

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 40m

Articles

Mr. Baseball


Following the highly successful run of his television series Magnum, P.I., which aired from 1980 to 1988, Tom Selleck was able to parlay his popularity into several starring roles in major releases over the next few years. Mr. Baseball (1992) was released near the end of that run, and although exhibiting many of the clichés of formula sports films, it has an appealing style and humor and offered Selleck a chance to show his considerable comic range as a washed-up ball player traded to a Japanese team. Forever bucking the management, smoking, drinking, getting into fights and insulting the manners and mores of his newly adopted country, Selleck, as Jack Elliot, eventually gets his act together and instills some winning spirit into the club, with the help of a fellow U.S. transplant played by Dennis Haysbert.

The history of American Major League Baseball players joining Japanese teams dates back to 1962, when pitcher Don Newcombe signed on to a Japanese club, although the first American athlete credited with playing baseball in that country after World War II was Wallace Kaname Yonamine, a Japanese-American who had played professional football but never had a position with a major league team. Yonamine had a Hall of Fame career in Japan.

The sport was introduced into Japan in the 1870s, and by the turn of the 20th century, it was a popular national pastime. The first professional teams were established in the mid-1930s, and the current league structure was established in the early 1950s.

This was an uncharacteristic genre for Australian director Fred Schepisi, better known for such dramas as Plenty (1985) and Six Degrees of Separation (1993), and the offbeat Steve Martin comedy-romance Roxanne (1987). Realizing that sports films often suffer from staged and unconvincing crowd scenes, Schepisi seamlessly incorporated real stadium footage for authenticity and excitement. Mr. Baseball was shot in the U.S. and Nagoya, Japan, by cinematographer Ian Baker, later winner of an Australian Film Institute Award for Japanese Story (2003).

The crusty head of the Japanese ball club, the Dragons, is played by Ken Takakura, who is known as the Clint Eastwood of Japan. Takakura started his career in the mid-1950s and quickly rose to stardom in the crime dramas that became so popular from that period and continue today. He later achieved recognition outside his own country with roles in such films as Too Late the Hero (1970), The Yakuza (1974), and Black Rain (1989).

There is a scene in Mr. Baseball in which pitchers refuse to throw the ball to Elliot for fear he will break the country's home run record. He challenges them by gripping the bat at the opposite end. This was apparently based on a real-life incident of a few years earlier when Japanese pitchers refused to pitch to American player Randy Bass, then playing for the Hanshin Tigers, because he was on the verge of breaking the single-season home run record. Bass also tauntingly turned his bat around in protest.

Reportedly, the cap Selleck's character wears at the end of Mr. Baseball is the same one he wore throughout the Magnum series.

Director: Fred Schepisi
Producers: Jeffrey Silver, John Kao, Susumu Kondo
Screenplay: Gary Ross, Kevin Wade, Monte Merrick, story by Theo Pelletier and John Junkerman
Cinematography: Ian Baker
Editing: Peter Honess
Production Design: Ted Haworth
Original Music: Jerry Goldsmith
Cast: Tom Selleck (Jack Elliot), Ken Takakura (Uchiyama), Dennis Haysbert (Max Dubois), Aya Takanashi (Hiroko Uchiyama), Toshi Shioya (Yoji Nishimura).
C-109m. Letterboxed.

by Rob Nixon
Mr. Baseball

Mr. Baseball

Following the highly successful run of his television series Magnum, P.I., which aired from 1980 to 1988, Tom Selleck was able to parlay his popularity into several starring roles in major releases over the next few years. Mr. Baseball (1992) was released near the end of that run, and although exhibiting many of the clichés of formula sports films, it has an appealing style and humor and offered Selleck a chance to show his considerable comic range as a washed-up ball player traded to a Japanese team. Forever bucking the management, smoking, drinking, getting into fights and insulting the manners and mores of his newly adopted country, Selleck, as Jack Elliot, eventually gets his act together and instills some winning spirit into the club, with the help of a fellow U.S. transplant played by Dennis Haysbert. The history of American Major League Baseball players joining Japanese teams dates back to 1962, when pitcher Don Newcombe signed on to a Japanese club, although the first American athlete credited with playing baseball in that country after World War II was Wallace Kaname Yonamine, a Japanese-American who had played professional football but never had a position with a major league team. Yonamine had a Hall of Fame career in Japan. The sport was introduced into Japan in the 1870s, and by the turn of the 20th century, it was a popular national pastime. The first professional teams were established in the mid-1930s, and the current league structure was established in the early 1950s. This was an uncharacteristic genre for Australian director Fred Schepisi, better known for such dramas as Plenty (1985) and Six Degrees of Separation (1993), and the offbeat Steve Martin comedy-romance Roxanne (1987). Realizing that sports films often suffer from staged and unconvincing crowd scenes, Schepisi seamlessly incorporated real stadium footage for authenticity and excitement. Mr. Baseball was shot in the U.S. and Nagoya, Japan, by cinematographer Ian Baker, later winner of an Australian Film Institute Award for Japanese Story (2003). The crusty head of the Japanese ball club, the Dragons, is played by Ken Takakura, who is known as the Clint Eastwood of Japan. Takakura started his career in the mid-1950s and quickly rose to stardom in the crime dramas that became so popular from that period and continue today. He later achieved recognition outside his own country with roles in such films as Too Late the Hero (1970), The Yakuza (1974), and Black Rain (1989). There is a scene in Mr. Baseball in which pitchers refuse to throw the ball to Elliot for fear he will break the country's home run record. He challenges them by gripping the bat at the opposite end. This was apparently based on a real-life incident of a few years earlier when Japanese pitchers refused to pitch to American player Randy Bass, then playing for the Hanshin Tigers, because he was on the verge of breaking the single-season home run record. Bass also tauntingly turned his bat around in protest. Reportedly, the cap Selleck's character wears at the end of Mr. Baseball is the same one he wore throughout the Magnum series. Director: Fred Schepisi Producers: Jeffrey Silver, John Kao, Susumu Kondo Screenplay: Gary Ross, Kevin Wade, Monte Merrick, story by Theo Pelletier and John Junkerman Cinematography: Ian Baker Editing: Peter Honess Production Design: Ted Haworth Original Music: Jerry Goldsmith Cast: Tom Selleck (Jack Elliot), Ken Takakura (Uchiyama), Dennis Haysbert (Max Dubois), Aya Takanashi (Hiroko Uchiyama), Toshi Shioya (Yoji Nishimura). C-109m. Letterboxed. by Rob Nixon

Quotes

Trivia

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States Fall October 2, 1992

Released in United States on Video March 17, 1993

Began shooting September 10, 1991.

Completed shooting December 12, 1991.

Project was originally set to start production on January 30, 1991.

Sogo Produce is executive producer Susumu Kondoh's production company.

Originally titled "Tokyo Diamond," written by Monte Merrick.

Released in United States on Video March 17, 1993

Released in United States Fall October 2, 1992