15 Things You Never Knew About The Rat Pack: Sinatra's Vegas Crew

By | September 16, 2022

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Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jnr, Peter Lawford, Joey Bishop - posed outside Sands Casino, Las Vegas, 1960 at "Summit At Sands" (Photo by GAB Archive/Redferns)

We know them as the coolest cats in entertainment in the early 1960s -- the Rat Pack. But who were they? How many of them were there? Everyone can name the leader, Frank Sinatra, and most people know the next two familiar faces: Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr. But then it gets a little fuzzy. The Rat Pack of the 1960s was in the original Ocean's Eleven (1960) -- does that mean there were 11 of them? And the cast of that movie brings up another question -- was the Rat Pack a boys' club, or did they let Ocean's Eleven co-star Angie Dickinson in? And Sergeants 3 (1964) was also a Rat Pack movie; what about 4 For Texas (1963) and Robin And The 7 Hoods (1964)? All these numbers aren't helping.

The very simple question of who was in the Rat Pack has a very simple and definitive answer. But from our vantage point in the 21st century, it's not so simple -- we can come up with big names that we think should have been in the Rat Pack. This Mandela Effect might include Bing Crosby, Tony Bennett, Tony Curtis, President John F. Kennedy, Sammy Cahn, Cesar Romero, Mel Tormé, Jerry Lewis, Don Rickles, Buddy Hackett, Trini Lopez, Lee Marvin, Telly Savalas... no, now we're on to the cast of The Dirty Dozen (1967), which was definitely not a Rat Pack movie, even though it sort of has a number in the title.

None of those guys made the Rat Pack cut. And as much as we might wish for it to have been a co-ed social club, it wasn't. No Angie Dickinson, no Shirley MacLaine, no Marilyn Monroe.

The Rat Pack of the 1960s was five guys, no more and no less. Sinatra, Martin, Davis and two others. Have you come up with them yet?

The Five

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Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., and Frank Sinatra. Source: Pinterest

Known for chasing women, drinking booze, and taking pleasure in the nightlife and gambling scene that Las Vegas had to offer, the Rat Pack was a supergroup of entertainment and comedy who often appeared together in concerts, on TV or in movies. They sang, they told jokes, they did comedy sketches -- most of all, they had a blast. The official roster was Joey Bishop, Peter Lawford, Sammy Davis, Jr., Dean Martin, and of course, Frank Sinatra. All five stars appeared in Ocean’s Eleven, which was filmed in Las Vegas, and frequently performed together at The Sands, also in Las Vegas.