The years of 100-proof benders and three-pack-a-day habits may be long gone, but Dean Martin’s death has sparked nostalgia for the Rat Pack’s glory days. Warner Bros. has just re-optioned Dino: Living High in the Dirty Business of Dreams, Nick Tosches’ 1992 biography of the highball-in-hand crooner. Who’d play Martin’s band of Las Vegas lounge buddies on the big screen? How ‘bout casting another famous pack?
Rat Pack: Dean Martin Brat Pack: Rob Lowe — Pretty boy Martin made a career out of being the straight man on film; pretty boy Rob Lowe nearly lost his career by proving he was a straight man (having sex with a minor) on videotape.
Rat Pack: Frank Sinatra Brat Pack: Judd Nelson — Frank Sinatra dated famous actresses (Ava Gardner and Lana Turner) and defined hip; Judd Nelson dated an infamous actress (Shannen Doherty) and starred in From the Hip.
Rat Pack: Peter Lawford Brat Pack: Emilio Estevez — Peter Lawford’s career was overshadowed by that of a sex-crazed relative (brother-in-law John F. Kennedy); Emilio Estevez’s career is overshadowed by that of a sex-crazed relative (Charlie Sheen).
Rat Pack: Joey Bishop Brat Pack: Andrew McCarthy — Joey Bishop, the stiff-as-a-board cutup, ran with a much cooler crowd and looked good in pink cardigans; Andrew McCarthy, the Mannequin cutup, ran with a much cooler crowd and starred in Pretty in Pink.
Rat Pack: Shirley MacLaine Brat Pack: Molly Ringwald — Brassy redhead Shirley MacLaine was the token female in a group of shameless pickup artists; brassy redhead Molly Ringwald was the female lead in 1987’s shameful The Pick-Up Artist.
Rat Pack: Sammy Davis Jr. Brat Pack: C. Thomas Howell — ”Candy Man” Sammy Davis Jr. transcended race and made audiences laugh and cry; in Soul Man C. Thomas Howell exploited race and made audiences groan and wince.