The Sandlot Celebrates 30th Anniversary – Cast Interview

The Sandlot cast has been touring to commemorate 30 years.

Cast of The Sandlot today!

The Sandlot came out 30 years ago today. The coming-of-age film that has gained popularity over the decades was first released on April 7th, 1993. The cast had a diverse group of kids: Patrick Renna, Tom Guiry, Mike Vitar, Chauncey Leopardi, Marty York, Brandon Quintin Adams, Grant Gelt, Victor DiMattia, and Shane Obedzinski. The adult cast featured some big names such as Denis Leary, Art LaFleur, Karen Allen, and James Earl Jones. The Sandlot made $34 million on a $7 million budget. A Disney+ series with the original cast is currently in development.


When Scottie Smalls (Thomas Guiry) moves to a new neighborhood, he manages to make friends with a group of kids who play baseball at the sandlot. Together they go on a series of funny and touching adventures. The boys run into trouble when Smalls borrows a ball from his stepdad that gets hit over a fence.

Our interview with The Sandlot cast is below!

The Sandlot Patrick Renna
Instagram: @patrickrenna

Does It Feel Like 30 Years?

Patrick Renna: Sometimes it does, and sometimes it doesn’t. I was talking to Tom Guiry about this. It went by slow and fast; all rolled up into one. You know, sometimes it feels like 30 years, and then when I’m with them, it feels like yesterday.

With James Earl Jones in The Sandlot, who is known to voice Darth Vader, were any of you fans?

Patrick Renna: All of us, yeah. Marty has the best story. He went to introduce himself and said, “Are you Darth Vader,” and Jones said, “No, I’m your father.” There were only scenes with Mike Vitar and Tom Guiry, so he was just kind of there for like a day, maybe two, you know. With big superstar James Earl Jones there, we were all starstruck. Empire Strikes Back is my favorite Star Wars movie, followed by the first one and then Return of the Jedi. I don’t understand why people do not like Return of the Jedi. It is awesome.

Were you a baseball kid growing up?

Patrick Renna: Yeah, that was the sport. I primarily played in my youth, you know. Baseball and basketball. Well, I’m not the tallest guy but I have a good outside shot. I played second base and outfield a little bit, but mostly second base.

The Sandlot Marty York
Instagram: @marty_york

What are you doing these days?

Marty York: Doing a little bit of acting here and there. You know, nothing as big as The Sandlot, obviously, but I’m a personal trainer. I do a lot of personal training online through Zoom and in person. I shot a documentary about my life. After I got in a bad accident in 97, I had to learn to walk again, so I shot the documentary for NBC, for the Peacock channel. You can see that on my Instagram at Marty_York. I’m also on a really funny Old Spice commercial.

What was your sport growing up?

Marty York: I did play a little hockey. I grew up in Southern California, but I played hockey and was always into dirt bike riding and stuff like that.

What is the best thing about being in The Sandlot?

Marty York: Just the friendships we’ve kept over the years you know. It is like Fast and Furious how Vin Diesel is about family, that’s kind of like how it is.

Instagram: @squints

Does It Feel Like 30 Years?

Chauncey Leopardi: Yeah, it’s starting to, but it’s gone fast. I feel like our perception of time changes as we get older, and it keeps going faster and faster as responsibilities grow. So yeah, but it’s beautiful to see that people are still interested, and it will live way past us, so that’s a cool thing. It’s awesome to see it stand the test of time.

What was the audition process for The Sandlot like?

Chauncey Leopardi: An agent sent me out on that audition, and we got down to a couple of callbacks. They started to mix and match all of us together, and then we were like doing like screen testing. Then we played baseball for like 2 hours a day, which we did for like a month before we went and shot the film. So it really helped with the camaraderie and the feeling we had together because we were so comfortable with each other by then.

Who is the worst baseball player?

Chauncey Leopardi: Probably Shane. He was a lot younger than us, still at the time. It was an age thing. You look at who was the best outside of Benny because Mike was an amazing player already. It kind of went down with how old you were because there was a big gap. It was like 14 to like 9. So you know, for a nine-year, it’s tough to put him against a 14-year-old and think he will hold.

What are you doing now?

Chauncey Leopardi: I’m in the cannabis industry, and I have a couple of brands and businesses, Foreign Genetics and Sports Cannabis. We have a couple of retail stores in Los Angeles.

Instagram: @lostinthe60s

Does It Feel Like 30 Years?

Grant Gelt: It doesn’t feel like it’s been 30 years, and the fact that it’s been 30 years is starting to become very stressful. Now that we’re in our 40s, it’s just starting to sink in. It feels like it was the 20th day of filming just the other day.

What are you doing now?

Grant Gelt: No, not in the acting world now. I moved out of the acting business at 17, 18 years old. I own a creative agency, Masscult, now with my wife and some really awesome people. So we work behind the scenes. It is based out of Nashville, and we’ve got folks in LA and Connecticut. Victor Dimattia actually works with us as well. He’s on our team, and he’s been an early team member, so you know it’s funny working with people at 12 years old and working with them again 30 years later,

Was baseball your first sport?

Grant Gelt: It was. Baseball was the first sport I remember playing. My first memories of baseball have always been incredible. That was the hard part of moving away from Los Angeles, the Dodgers, and Dodger Stadium. That was a place I spent a lot of time growing up.

How was your experience on the set of The Sandlot?

Grant Gelt: It felt like summer camp. That’s why it’s always so great to get together for these things and see the guys again because it still feels like summer camp. Being on set was fantastic. Getting to know the guys as adults have been even cooler. It’s been really nice to grow up with kind of everybody at the same time.

Instagram: @shaneobedzinski

Chauncey said you were the worst baseball player. Would you like to respond?

Shane Obedzinski: You know, I don’t blame him for saying that I was the shortest. I was the youngest. But I’ve kept my skill intact, and now all those old guys. They don’t have it anymore. So the tables have turned. Now, now I got it, and they don’t.

What have you been up to?

Shane Obedzinski: I live in Tampa, Florida, where I own a restaurant that I opened 12 years ago. That has been my main focus. It is brick oven pizza and our own recipe. The place is called Bay City Pizza in Brandon near Tampa. We also have a show for Disney+ in the works and a lot of events over the summer planned for the 30th anniversary.

Do you have a favorite city you like appearing at most?

Shane Obedzinski: Utah. I love going to Utah, where we filmed The Sandlot. I love the Utah mountains, so every time I get to see mountains, I’m happy. I’m going to Utah twice this year.

Do you have a fond memory from the set?

Shane Obedzinski: Anytime we did anything with the treehouse, we always really enjoyed that. That was our go-to spot whenever we were not filming. That was the treehouse we went to hang out in. So it was an actual set in a tree. Everything was real. So when we were not working, we were there. They couldn’t find us sometimes because we hid in there. So whenever I think of the movie, I think of the moments with the boys that you guys didn’t see it. I remember the treehouse and being in there with the boys having our kids summertime, you know, it was great.

Are you a Star Wars fan?

Shane Obedzinski: Yes, and we all wanted to meet James Earl Jones, obviously, cause it’s Darth Vader. So we all got there in the morning or early afternoon before we had to get lunch prior to filming. So we all got to go into his trailer area to meet him and say hi. I remember he’s eating soup and just looks up and says hello, and his voice shakes the thunder, you know.

Instagram: @victordimattia

Does It Feel Like 30 Years?

Victor DiMattia: Yeah, I feel old, man. Yeah, it’s crazy, man. The time just flew by, you know. It feels like when we get back together, all the guys together, man, it feels like we’re 12 years old all over again.

Did you have any favorite scenes?

Victor DiMattia: Oh man, anything with the treehouse is my favorite. So yeah, it was fun, dude. We used to hang out and stuff in between filming, and yeah, it was awesome.

Instagram: @brandon_quintin_adams

Does It Feel Like 30 Years?

Brandon Quintin Adams: It seems like just yesterday. You know, we were kids, 12 years old, hanging out in Salt Lake City, Utah, but you know, regular everyday life reminds you it’s been 30 years.

Any fond memories to share?

Brandon Quintin Adams: Outside the set, they had us all at these apartments. It was really like summer vacation. We were hanging out together, playing basketball, and baseball, and going to the pool. It’s funny because we were all looking forward to that pool scene. After all, it was so hot the whole time we were filming, but that was the coldest day out of the whole time we were there. But it was fun.

Why do you think the film has the longevity and popularity that it has had?

Brandon Quintin Adams: At the end of the day, man, it’s just a good American coming-of-age story about friendship. It is something we can all relate to. You know, kids growing up with their friends from the neighborhood. Having a good time, you know, and that transcends to each generation.

Read more News on Nerdtropolis. Subscribe to our YouTube.

Sean Tajipour is the Founder and Editor of Nerdtropolis and the host of the Moviegoers Society Podcast. He is also a member of the Critics Choice Association. You can follow on Twitter and Instagram @Seantaj.

3 thoughts on “The Sandlot Celebrates 30th Anniversary – Cast Interview

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.