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Movies: “Robin and the 7 Hoods”

June 24, 1964 - Opening today is “Robin and the 7 Hoods,” a musical film directed by Gordon Douglas and starring Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., and Bing Crosby. It features Peter Falk and Barbara Rush, with an uncredited cameo by Edward G. Robinson.

Written by David Schwartz, the film reimagines the Robin Hood legend in a 1920s Chicago gangster setting.

Produced by Sinatra, the film includes the song “My Kind of Town,” by Jimmy Van Heusen and Sammy Cahn.

Peter Lawford was originally cast as Allen A. Dale, but was replaced by Crosby following a falling-out with Sinatra. The feud stemmed from a scheduled visit to Sinatra’s home by Lawford’s brother-in-law, President Kennedy, during a 1962 West Coast trip.

Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, who was long concerned about Sinatra’s rumored ties with underworld figures, encouraged the President to change his plans and stay at Crosby’s home, which, it was maintained, could provide better security for the President. The change came at the last minute after Sinatra had made extensive arrangements for the President’s visit, including the construction of a helipad.

Sinatra was furious, believing that Lawford had failed to intercede with the Kennedys on his behalf and ostracized him from the “Rat Pack.”

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