This Week in 1976: Opening Day for 'The Bad News Bears'
Thirty-five years ago this week (on April 6, 1976), just in time for the beginning of baseball season, Hollywood delivered the best movie ever made about Little League. 'The Bad News Bears' was, on the surface, a traditional sports flick about underdogs who come together as a team and make it to the championship, but it still broke the rules for both sports films and movies about children. The coach (Walter Matthau) was a cynical alcoholic, and the kids were an equally cynical group of foul-mouthed misfits. Lessons of teamwork and sportsmanship were taught, but no one really became a better person.
Surprisingly, their gleeful vulgarity is what endeared viewers to these kids, so much so that the film spawned two sequels, a TV series, and a 2005 remake. Even today, the former child actors who starred in the original film, most of whom dropped out of show business when they grew up, continue to be recognized for their part in the Bears' championship season. So let's play a little game of "Where Are They Now?"