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‘Robin and the 7 Hoods’: A Look at the Star-Studded Cast

Look inside the Rat Pack’s hit 1964 movie.

In the golden age of Hollywood, amidst the glitz and glamour of the 1960s, Robin and the 7 Hoods emerged as a dazzling gem in the crown of musical comedy. Released in 1964, with a star-studded cast, Robin and the 7 Hoods was an extravaganza that captivated audiences with its blend of wit, charm, and toe-tapping tunes.

Set in prohibition-era Chicago, the movie reimagines the classic tale of Robin Hood. The film follows the exploits of a group of charismatic gangsters led by Robbo (Frank Sinatra), who adopt a Robin Hood-esque persona to redistribute wealth to the needy.

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As they navigate the underworld of organized crime and romantic entanglements, they find themselves embroiled in a web of betrayal and redemption. With its blend of humor, romance, and catchy musical numbers, Robin and the 7 Hoods offers a glimpse into a bygone era.

Directed by Gordon Douglas, Robin and the 7 Hoods boasted an impressive pedigree both behind and in front of the camera. The film’s screenplay was written by David R. Schwartz and cast included Bing Crosby, Sammy Davis Jr. and Dean Martin—which ensured its status as a box office hit.

Here, we look at the cast members of Robin and the 7 Hoods.

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Frank Sinatra as Robbo

Frank Sinatra as Robbo in Robin and the 7 Hoods
1964/; Harry Langdon / Contributor/ Getty

Born on December 12, 1915, in Hoboken, New Jersey, Frank Sinatra played the character of Robbo, the charismatic leader of the gang, embodying the Robin Hood archetype with his charm and wit.

Ol’ Blue Eyes, as Sinatra was called, was regarded as one of the most popular entertainers of the mid-20th century and among the world’s best-selling musical artists. In addition to singing, he was a prolific actor.

Sinatra appeared in several musicals including On the Town (1949). He also appeared in non-musical films as well, including From Here to Eternity (1953), in which he won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. From there, he went on star in The Man with the Golden Arm (1955) Guys and Dolls (1955), and High Society (1956). He then won the Golden Globe Award for his role in the 1957 musical Pal Joey. He also appeared on television, most notably in The Frank Sinatra Show (1957). He also made guest appearances on other shows throughout the 1950s and 1960s.

Audiences loved him in Robin and the 7 Hoods and he went on to appear in over a dozen movies after that film including Tony Rome (1967) and Dirty Dingus Magee (1970). His last movie appearance, a cameo, was in Cannonball Run II (1984).

Sinatra was known as much for his personal life—he was involved with many different women over the years and was married four times—as he was for his acting and music.

He passed away in 1998 at the age of 82.

Dean Martin as Little John: Robin and the 7 Hoods

Dean Martin as Little John
1964/; Images Press / Contributor/ Getty

Born on June 7, 1917, in Steubenville, Ohio, Dean Martin played the role of Little John, Robbo’s loyal friend and right-hand man known for his suave demeanor and smooth singing voice.

Martin was born Dino Paul Crocetti. He teamed up with Jerry Lewis in 1950 to do the movie At War with the Army. The film was a success and he went on to make many other hits. In 1958 he did The Young Lions with Marlon Brando and Montgomery Clift. In 1958 he was in Some Came Running (1958), with Shirley MacLaine and Frank Sinatra. The original 1960’s Ocean’s Eleven had him starring as Sam Harmon alongside other members of the Rat Pack including Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr.

After Robin and the 7 Hoods, Martin starred in the successful The Dean Martin Show (1965), and won a Golden Globe. In 1973, the show was renamed The Dean Martin Comedy Hour, and in 1974 it was renamed again to The Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts. The show was on for the next ten years and had guest appearances by all the great stars at the time including Bob Hope, Frank Sinatra, Lucille Ball and James Stewart. Martin was known for his comedic timing and effortless charm.

His last foray into TV was on the series Half Nelson in 1985.

He died in 1995 at the age of 78.

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Sammy Davis Jr. as Willie Scarlatti

Sammy Davis Jr. as Willie Scarlatti in Robin and the 7 Hoods
1964/1988Michael Ochs Archives / Stringer/ Getty; Mark Reinstein / Contributor/ Getty

Born on December 8, 1925, in Harlem, New York City, Sammy Davis Jr. played the role of Willie Scarlatti, a talented performer and member of Robbo’s gang known for his dancing skills and quick wit.

Prior to Robin and the 7 Hoods, Davis Jr. was a multifaceted entertainer, renowned for his singing, dancing, and acting talents. He had appeared in numerous films and stage productions.

He made his film debut at age seven in the Ethel Waters film Rufus Jones for President. He had a starring role on Broadway in Mr. Wonderful with Chita Rivera (1956). In 1960, he appeared in the Rat Pack film Ocean’s 11. He returned to the stage in 1964 in a musical adaptation of Clifford Odets’ Golden Boy; Davis was nominated for a Tony Award for his performance.

After joining the Rat Pack once again to do Robin and the 7 Hoods, Davis Jr wrote his autobiography, Yes I Can: The Story of Sammy Davis, Jr. (1965) in which he candidly recounted the racism he felt as a performer.

In 1966, he had his own TV variety show, titled The Sammy Davis Jr. Show. He continued in film appearing in Cannonball Run I and II and also had guest appearances on several TV shows including Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In, One Life to Live and General Hospital.

He was married three times.

He passed away in 1990 from throat cancer. He was only 64.

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Bing Crosby as Allen A. Dale: Robin and the 7 Hoods

Bing Crosby as Allen A. Dale
1964/1977Archive Photos / Stringer/ Getty; Janet Fries / Contributor/ Getty

Born on May 3, 1903, in Tacoma, Washington, Bing Crosby played the role of Allen A. Dale, a smooth-talking con artist who joins forces with Robbo’s gang, bringing his own brand of charm and mischief.

Crosby, born Harry Lillis Crosby, Jr., was a legendary crooner and actor, known for his distinctive voice and relaxed demeanor. He had starred in numerous films and radio programs, including the iconic Road to series with Bob Hope. Crosby has been associated with the Christmas season ever since he starred the musical film Holiday Inn (1942) and White Christmas (1954) in which he famously sang Irving Berlin’s White Christmas in both films. He won the best actor Oscar for playing an easygoing priest in Going My Way (1944). He was also nominated for an Oscar in the sequel The Bells of St. Mary’s (1945) in which he starred opposite Ingrid Bergman. He also played opposite Grace Kelly in The Country Girl (1954).

After Robin and the 7 Hoods, Crosby was in the ABC series The Bing Crosby Show from 1964–1965.

He passed away in 1977 at the age of 74.

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Peter Falk as Guy Gisborne

Peter Falk as Guy Gisborne in Robin and the 7 Hoods
1964/2003IMDB; Victor Spinelli / Contributor/ Getty

Born on September 16, 1927, in New York City, Peter Falk played the character of Guy Gisborne, a rival gangster who clashes with Robbo’s crew, adding an element of danger and intrigue to the story.

Prior to Robin and the 7 Hoods, Falk was an accomplished actor, known for his versatility and distinctive presence on screen. He had appeared in several films and television shows, including the TV series Naked City and The Untouchables.

After Robin and the 7 Hoods, Falk continued to enjoy success in entertainment, winning multiple awards for his iconic portrayal of Lieutenant Columbo in the television series Columbo (1971-2003). He also appeared in numerous films including 1987’s The Princess Bride (he played the grandfather). He was also in 2002’s Undisputed. His most recent movie appearance was in 2009’s American Cowslip.

He passed away in 2011.

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Barbara Rush as Marian: Robin and the 7 Hoods

Barbara Rush as Marian
1964/; Emma McIntyre / Staff/ Getty

Born on January 4, 1927, in Denver, Colorado, Barbara Rush played the role of Marian, a glamorous nightclub singer who becomes entangled in the gang’s escapades, adding a touch of romance to the story.

Rush rose to fame with supporting roles in 1950s films like Magnificent Obsession and The Young Lions. She also appeared in the science fiction movies It Came From Outer Space and When Worlds Collide.

After appearing in Robin and the 7 Hoods, she went on to star in the western Hombre (1967), alongside Paul Newman. She also did a lot of work in the theater. Her best-known role was in A Woman of Independent Means, which opened on Broadway in 1984.

Rush also appeared on the small screen. She was the wealthy Florida wife in NBC’s Flamingo Road (1981-82), a newspaper correspondent in NBC’s Saints and Sinners (1962-63), an abused wife in ABC’s Peyton Place. She also appeared in the last season of The New Dick Van Dyke Show. Her final TV appearances were in the TV series 7th Heaven, between 1997 and 2007.

She passed away April 1, 2024 at the age of 97.

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