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Bleacher Bums
Written by Roberta Custer
Richard Fire
Dennis Franz
Stuart Gordon
Joe Mantegna
Josephine Paoletti
Dennis Paoli
Carolyn Purdy-Gordon
Michael Saad
Ian Patrick Williams
Date premiered 1977
Place premiered Organic Theater Company, Chicago, Illinois
Original language English
Genre Drama
Setting Wrigley Field

Bleacher Bums is a 1977 play written collaboratively by members of Chicago's Organic Theater Company, from an idea by actor Joe Mantegna. Its original Chicago production was directed by Stuart Gordon. A 1979 performance of the play was taped for PBS television, and in 2002 a made-for-TV movie adaptation was produced.


Bleacher Bums takes place in the bleachers of Chicago's Wrigley Field. The characters are a bunch of Chicago Cubs fans, watching a game in progress on a summer afternoon. Most of them have been gathering here for some time and know each other; even if they might not necessarily like or tolerate each other. Beer is being drunk, hot dogs are being eaten, and friendly wagers start to take on increasing importance.


Bleacher Bums was put on in different cities across the United States. In 1981, longtime Cubs fan Jerry Pritikin, the Bleacher Preacher, was hired as a paid consultant for a production in San Francisco, instructing the cast there on Chicago fan vernacular, and proper fan behavior.[1]


Joe Mantegna and Dennis Franz starred in the original production; other cast members over the years have included Dennis Farina, Gary Sandy, and George Wendt.

A 2002 TV movie version for cable television was directed by Saul Rubinek and starred Brad Garrett, Wayne Knight, Matt Craven, Peter Riegert and Hal Sparks. Due to licensing issues with Major League Baseball, the name of the team was changed from the Chicago Cubs to the Chicago Bruins, and Wrigley Field was renamed.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Nothing to Cheer About". Chicago Reader. Retrieved 16 April 2015. 

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bleacher_Bums — Please support Wikipedia.
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495 news items

Comcast SportsNet Chicago

Comcast SportsNet Chicago
Mon, 11 May 2015 17:12:15 -0700

The Cubs don't have to worry about that existential question anymore, now that the left- and center-field bleachers opened for Monday night's game against the New York Mets, with fans streaming in for batting practice. “I guess awkward would probably ...

Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune
Mon, 03 Aug 2015 08:56:15 -0700

"The characters in 'Bleacher Bums' and their stories are compelling," said Gerth, who can identify with the allegiance fans have with the Cubs. "I also feel the team itself is a perfect fit for the city that rebuilt itself from ashes of the Great ...

Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune
Wed, 19 Aug 2015 09:24:30 -0700

A few dozen Bleacher Bums hopped over the left field wall and got in on the action as well. Tribune sportswriter Robert Markus wrote that day that the Bleacher Bums were “always boisterous, but driven to unprecedented fits of frenzy by Holtzman's feat.”.

Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune
Tue, 21 Jul 2015 02:56:15 -0700

One of those memories arrived fresh from a summer night in 1977. Memory is not specific on dates, but the year and the season are correct, and the place was the Leo Lerner Theater in Uptown for the production of the Organic Theater's "Bleacher Bums.".


Mon, 10 Aug 2015 12:55:15 -0700

For years and years, the only people who threw back opposing home runs were the so-called Bleacher Bums in Wrigley Field. Now it seems like fans of almost every team want to get in on the action. Message to those fans: Stop stealing someone else's ...
Broadway World
Mon, 24 Aug 2015 14:45:12 -0700

Chicago credits: Rounding Third (Northlight), The Second City, Wild Men, Bleacher Bums (Organic). Los Angeles and Edinburgh: Re-Animator the Musical. Oodles of film and television, most recently Clipped from Warner Brothers TV and TBS, and most ...

Springfield News-Leader

Springfield News-Leader
Wed, 19 Aug 2015 11:59:31 -0700

Cartoons Oyster Bar & Grill, 1614 S. Glenstone Ave., 417-889-6500: The Bel-Airs, doors at 5:30 p.m. Friday, cover; Paralandra, doors at 9 p.m. Friday, cover; Central High School 80's Flashback Reunion with Bleacher Bums, doors at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, cover.
Broadway World
Fri, 21 Aug 2015 10:13:21 -0700

... Hagen) as high octane realtor Marilyn Dresden; History Channel's Cities of the Underworld host Eric Myles Geller as a libertarian personal wealth consultant; and Emmy Award-winning actorIan Patrick Williams (Bleacher Bums in Chicago, L.A. and on ...

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