71 Facts About Dean Martin


Dean Martin established himself as a singer, recording numerous contemporary songs as well as standards from the Great American Songbook.


Dean Martin became one of the most popular acts in Las Vegas and was known for his friendship with fellow artists Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr.


Dean Martin was born Dino Paul Crocetti on June 7,1917, in Steubenville, Ohio, to Italian father Gaetano Alfonso Crocetti and Italian-American mother Angela Crocetti.


Dean Martin's father, who was a barber, was originally from Montesilvano, Pescara, and his mother was born December 18,1897, in Fernwood, Ohio.


Dean Martin had an older brother named Guglielmo "William" Antonio Crocetti.


Dean Martin attended Grant Elementary School in Steubenville, where he was bullied for his broken English.


Dean Martin dropped out of Steubenville High School in the tenth grade because, according to Martin, he thought he was smarter than his teachers.


Dean Martin bootlegged liquor, worked in a steel mill, served as a croupier at a speakeasy and a blackjack dealer, and was a welterweight boxer.


Dean Martin's prizefighting earned him a broken nose, a scarred lip, many broken knuckles, and a bruised body.


Dean Martin knocked out King in the first round of an amateur boxing match.


Dean Martin gave up boxing to work as a roulette stickman and croupier in an illegal casino behind a tobacco shop, where he had started as a stock boy.


Dean Martin got his break working for the Ernie McKay Orchestra.


Dean Martin sang in a crooning style influenced by Harry Mills of the Mills Brothers and Perry Como.


Dean Martin stayed with Watkins until at least May 1943.


Dean Martin was drafted into the US Army during World War II but was discharged after 14 months due to a hernia.


In October 1941, Dean Martin married Elizabeth "Betty" Anne McDonald in Cleveland, and the couple had an apartment in Cleveland Heights for a while.


Dean Martin met comic Jerry Lewis at the Glass Hat Club in New York, where both were performing.


Huddling in the alley behind the club, Lewis and Dean Martin agreed to "go for broke", they divided their act between songs, skits, and ad-libbed material.


Dean Martin put less enthusiasm into the work, leading to escalating arguments with Lewis.


Dean Martin told his partner he was "nothing to [him] but a dollar sign".


Dean Martin's first solo film, Ten Thousand Bedrooms, was a box-office failure.


Dean Martin wanted to become a dramatic actor, known for more than slapstick comedy films.


Tony Randall already had the part, but talent agency MCA realized that with this film, Dean Martin would become a triple threat: they could make money from his work in nightclubs, films, and records.


Randall was paid off to relinquish the role, Dean Martin replaced him and the film turned out to be the beginning of Dean Martin's comeback.


Dean Martin starred alongside Frank Sinatra for the first time in the Vincente Minnelli drama, Some Came Running.


Dean Martin was acclaimed as Dude in Rio Bravo, directed by Howard Hawks and starring John Wayne and singer Ricky Nelson.


Dean Martin teamed again with Wayne in The Sons of Katie Elder, cast as brothers.


In 1960, Dean Martin was cast in the film version of the Judy Holliday stage musical comedy Bells Are Ringing.


Elvis Presley was said to have been a fan of Dean Martin, and patterned his performance of "Love Me Tender" after Dean Martin's style.


Dean Martin often hosted country performers on his TV show and was named "Man Of the Year" by the Country Music Association in 1966.


For three decades, Dean Martin was among the most popular acts in Las Vegas.


Dean Martin sang and was one of the smoothest comics in the business, benefiting from the decade of comedy with Lewis.


Daughter Deana Martin continues to perform, as did youngest son Ricci Martin until his death in August 2016.


Eldest son Craig was a producer on Dean Martin's television show and daughter Claudia was an actress in films such as For Those Who Think Young.


Sinatra and Dean Martin supported the civil rights movement and refused to perform in clubs that would not allow African-American or Jewish performers.


In 1965, Martin launched his weekly NBC comedy-variety series, The Dean Martin Show, which ran for 264 episodes until 1974.


Dean Martin won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Television Series Musical or Comedy in 1966 and was nominated again the following three years.


Dean Martin capitalized on his laid-back persona of the half-drunk crooner, hitting on women with remarks that would get anyone else slapped, and making snappy if slurred remarks about fellow celebrities during his roasts.


Dean Martin later had trouble with NBC for his off-the-cuff use of obscene Italian phrases, which brought complaints from viewers who spoke the language.


Dean Martin was often the first to call it a night and, when not on tour or on a film location, liked to go home to see his wife and children.


Dean Martin borrowed the lovable-drunk shtick from Joe E Lewis, but his convincing portrayals of heavy boozers in Some Came Running and Howard Hawks's Rio Bravo led to unsubstantiated claims of alcoholism.


Dean Martin starred in and co-produced four Matt Helm superspy comedy adventures during this time, as well as a number of Westerns.


Dean Martin found a way to make his passion for golf profitable by offering a signature line of golf balls, and the Dean Martin Tucson Open was an event on golf's PGA Tour from 1972 to 1975.


At his death, Dean Martin was reportedly the single largest minority shareholder of RCA stock.


For nearly a decade, Dean Martin had recorded as many as four albums a year for Reprise Records.


Dean Martin recorded his final Reprise album, Once in a While in 1974, which was not issued until 1978.


The 1974 film drama Mr Ricco marked Dean Martin's final starring role, in which he played a criminal defense lawyer.


Dean Martin joined the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino, where he was the featured performer on the hotel's opening night of December 23,1973, and his contract required him to star in a film for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios.


Dean Martin made a public reconciliation with Lewis on his partner's Labor Day telethon, benefiting the Muscular Dystrophy Association, in September 1976.


Dean Martin returned to films briefly with appearances in the star-laden, critically panned but commercially successful The Cannonball Run and its sequel Cannonball Run II.


Dean Martin had a minor hit single with "Since I Met You Baby" and made his first music video, which appeared on MTV and was created by Martin's youngest son, Ricci.


Lewis stated in an on-stage interview in 2005 that subsequent to his son's death Dean Martin became a reclusive alcoholic.


Dean Martin, who responded best to a club audience, felt lost in the huge stadiums they were performing in at Sinatra's insistence, and he was not interested in drinking until dawn after performances.


In December 1990, Dean Martin congratulated Sinatra on his 75th birthday special.


Dean Martin wed Elizabeth Anne "Betty" McDonald, of Ridley Park, Pennsylvania in 1941.


Martin and McDonald divorced in 1949 and Dean gained custody of their children.


Dean Martin next married Dorothy Jean "Jeanne" Biegger, a former Orange Bowl queen from Coral Gables, Florida.


Dean Martin's uncle was Leonard Barr, who appeared in several of his shows.


Dean Martin's son-in-law was the Beach Boys' Carl Wilson, who married Dean Martin's daughter Gina.


Dean Martin bred Purebred Andalusian Horses at his Hidden Valley Ranch, Thousand Oaks Ventura County, California.


Dean Martin volunteered to perform fundraisers for the Bergson Group in the late 1940s.


Dean Martin was told that he would require surgery to prolong his life, but he rejected it.


Dean Martin retired from public life in early 1995 and died of acute respiratory failure resulting from emphysema at his Beverly Hills home on Christmas Day, 1995, at age 78.


Dean Martin was interred at the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles.


Martin's family was presented a gold record in 2004 for Dino: The Essential Dean Martin, his fastest-selling album, which hit the iTunes Top 10, and in 2006 it was certified "Platinum".


Dean Martin's footprints were immortalized at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in 1964.


Dean Martin has three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame: one at 6519 Hollywood Boulevard for movies; the second at 1617 Vine for recordings; and a third at 6651 Hollywood Boulevard for television.


In February 2009, Dean Martin was honored with a posthumous Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.


In 2010, Dean Martin received a posthumous star on the Italian Walk of Fame in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Dean Martin was portrayed by Joe Mantegna in the 1998 HBO movie about Sinatra and Dean Martin titled The Rat Pack.


Dean Martin appears as Matt Helm in Quentin Tarantino's 2019 period piece Once Upon A Time in Hollywood.