The Addams Family, 'BRUNO' STANDING POLAR BEAR taxidermy 1964 ADDAMS FAMILY ORIGINAL set PROP +1991 film

original movie prop

"BRUNO" is the original Polar bear that stood in the living room of the classic TV series THE ADDAMS FAMILY (Filmways 1964-66), which was based on the Chas Addams NEW YORKER cartoons. This bear was used throughout much of the second season. She stands 11 feet tall with base.

This particular bear is the ONLY  Polar Bear mount that was ever used on THE ADDAMS FAMILY television show.



(NOTE* - SORRY TO rock and roll's ROB ZOMBIE [Bob Cummings, who claims to own the original Addams bear]- - -Unfortunately, he DOES NOT.

Pictures say a thousand words and here is the photographic proof. While Zombie DOES own a similar 'Hollywood' prop bear, his was used in the Patrick Swayze film ROADHOUSE, but never used on ADDAMS.  The ROADHOUSE bear is smaller and is in poor condition. Upon comparison to the actual bear, Zombie's bear has a closed mouth and rather "meloncholy" look on its face.




'BRUNO' was used throughout the second season of THE ADDAMS FAMILY, and even had an episode devoted to her- in EPISODE #62 'THE ADDAMS POLICY'- Uncle Fester accidently burns the polar bear up with a blowtorch! The Addams spend the rest of the episode getting a replacement through their insurance company.

In this episode only, the Family refers to this bear as "Smokey"- presumably a dual reference to the U.S. National Park Service character, and the fact the bear got 'smoked' in this episode! See the frame grab I posted here of the bear "on fire"...which of course was done optically in the lab...note his undisturbed shadow on the living room back wall !  I have an original 1965 production script from this episode, and in the text it reads that at this point Fester sets the bear on fire with a blow torch. And then there is a notation in the script saying ['Of, course we don't REALLY set the bear on fire...'] (!!)


Ironically, the brown prop bear used as the replacement in this episode is the same 'dark' bear used in the first season of Addams- the exact same prop that Bruno replaced to begin with! The first season 'dark' bear, which appears to be a brown painted polar bear, was originally used in the film ANNA KARENINA(MGM 1935) starring Greta Garbo.


Bruno the bear dates to at least the early 1950s, obtained from a taxidermy collection by the production company. It was then returned to rental stock and was exclusively a TV/movie rental (for decades) and display, and used in dozens of TV shows and films. Its resume includes the popular modern film version of THE ADDAMS FAMILY (Paramount 1991), Tim Burton's ED WOOD (Touchstone Pictures 1994) with Johnny Depp, and the disco classic THANK GOD, IT's FRIDAY! among countless unknown others. As a side note, there was also a growling polar skin RUG (also called Bruno) used on the series. I have seen the rug several years ago, and it is still in surprisingly decent shape, though re-backed. It, too, is an ancient mount.

In the photos "Bruno" is seen being used in the 60s Addams TV show, and also THE ADDAMS FAMILY movie (Paramount 1991) and ED WOOD (1994) with Johnny Depp. Additionally, the small bottom center photo shows its use in the disco-era classic, THANK GOD, IT'S FRIDAY!, used in the 'polar' bar scenes. 

The photo on the above right is a behind-the-scenes shot of TV's Uncle Fester (JACKIE COOGAN) on set, clowning with the bear. Notice the huge stage light just over/behind Coogan's head.

prop: collector:
category: original / screen-used
type: movie props
serial number: (at about 1:00)
celebrity: John Astin (5)
movie: The Addams Family (TV) (1964)
original (8)  |  replica (2)
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Oh yeah, I remember this piece. It's very, very FAMOUS in all the world. It is a piece of history. Congratulations!! This polar bear is in my favorites!! :-) [by sylo27 ]
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