Dean Martin, ‘The King of Cool,’ Starred in Westerns Beside John Wayne and Jimmy Stewart

by Kayla Zadel
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Dean Martin, born Dino Paul Crocetti, was a legendary member of the Rat Pack. Martin was one of the most popular acts in Las Vegas, performing with this iconic group made up of Frank Sinatra, Joey Bishop, Peter Lawford, and Sammy Davis, Jr. Dean Martin was well-known for his hits like “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head?,” “Everybody Loves Somebody,” and “That’s Amore.”

However, there was a time when the singer, who was referred to as “The King of Cool,” turned towards television. Martin even had his own comedy show on NBC called “The Dean Martin Show.” Then, Martin starred in several movies, but perhaps his most well-known are his roles in western films. What’s more, the actors that the King of Cool was starring alongside in these neo-westerns were the likes of John Wayne and Jimmy Stewart.

Dean Martin’s Most Notable Westerns

The singer and comedian acted in many films during this acting career. However, some of the better-known movies are western ones.

First up, the 1959 film “Rio Bravo.” Martin stars alongside John Wayne and Ricky Nelson in this movie. He plays a small-town sheriff who runs into trouble when he arrests a local rancher. Martin’s character must keep this alleged felon locked up on murder charges, but chaos reigns down the rancher’s gang come to rescue him. “Rio Bravo” is considered one of the best westerns ever made, according to Wide Open Country. What’s more, Martin gets to show off his funny side and his pipes.

Next up, the film that features three members of the Rat Pack. Frank Sinatra, Peter Lawford, and Sammy Davis Jr. star alongside Martin in “Sergeants 3.” Sinatra, Lawford, and Martin play members of the U.S. Calvary. Their assignment is the Indian Territory, where Davis Jr. is a slave who dreams of joining the cavalry. The film is full of excitement and action.

Furthermore, Martin and Wayne come together again in “The Sons of Katie Elder.” This time they play brothers, who reunite at their mother’s funeral. But they find clues that point to their father’s death. They then seek revenge, alongside their two other brothers.

Then Dean Martin and Jimmy Stewart play brothers in “Bandolero!” The two take a hostage and leave town. However, this hostage woman falls in love with Martin’s character, Dee. But drama unfolds when the sheriff, who had his sights on the woman first, is hot on their trail.

Lastly, Martin and Lewis come together one last time for “Pardners.” The film is set in the old west, and Martin and Lewis play partners who are seeking revenge for their father’s murder.

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