The Bachelor Party is a 1953 teleplay by Paddy Chayefsky which was adapted by Chayefsky for a 1957 film.
Chayefsky's teleplay was produced by Fred Coe for The Philco Television Playhouse on October 11, 1953. Delbert Mann directed the following cast:
- Kathleen Maguire as Helen
- Don Murray as Charlie
- Bob Emmett as Kenneth
- The Bookkeeper as James Westerfield
- The Bachelor as Joseph Mantell
- The Groom as Douglas Gordon
- Anna Minot as Julie
- Ely Segall as The Bartender
- Elaine Eldridge as The Bar Hag
- Walter Kelly as The Young Fellow <li>Bettye Ackerman as The Girl
- Olive Dunbar as The FiancÃ©e
The 1957 film was directed by Delbert Mann, with Don Murray reprising his role as Charlie, co-starring E.G. Marshall, Jack Warden and Carolyn Jones. Jones was nominated for the 1958 Best Supporting Actress Academy Award for her portrayal of a party girl who is actually very lonely. Mary Grant designed the film's costumes.
Charlie Samson (Murray) is a hard-working married bookkeeper, struggling to advance himself by attending night school to become an accountant. He and four co-workers throw a bachelor party for a fellow bookkeeper, Arnold Craig (Philip Abbott), who is about to get married. After the party, they decide to go bar-hopping. Charlie is to be Arnold's best man.
Colleagues attending the party include the older married man, Walter (Marshall), who has recently been diagnosed with asthma, and Eddie (Warden), a happy-go-lucky bachelor. The night becomes a turning point for all five men.
Charlie finds his loyalty to his wife tested during the evening, and he almost has an affair with a young woman (Jones) he meets on the street heading to a Greenwich Village party. Walter, in despair about his situation, wanders off during the evening.
Arnold becomes drunk and ambivalent about getting married, and he breaks off the wedding only to change his mind after he sobers up and Charlie gives him a lecture about the benefits of married life. This, in spite of the fact that in the beginning of the story, Charlie had been regretting his marriage and had gone to the party with a serious intention of committing adultery.
We last see Eddie at a bar, striking up a conversation with an older unattractive woman. In the end, Charlie decides that married life is the way to go, and that his struggle to build a home with his wife is worthwhile, and better than the empty and lonely existence of his friend Eddie, whom he used to envy.
- Don Murray as Charlie Samson
- E.G. Marshall as Walter
- Jack Warden as Eddie Watkins, the Bachelor
- Philip Abbott as Arnold Craig
- Larry Blyden as Kenneth
- Patricia Smith as Helen Samson
- Carolyn Jones as The Existentialist
- Nancy Marchand as Mrs. Julie Samson
The Bachelor Party was nominated for one Oscar, one BAFTA award, and one award at the 1957 Cannes Film Festival:
Chayefsky on The Bachelor Party
Afterword to The Bachelor Party:
- The Bachelor Party at the Internet Movie Database
- The Bachelor Party at AllMovie
- The Bachelor Party at the TCM Movie Database
- The Bachelor Party at Rotten Tomatoes
- The Bachelor Party at Box Office Mojo