Kick it old school Saturday night when Deana Martin — also known as the King of Cool Dean Martin’s daughter — takes the stage at the Fontainebleau. The iconic, revamped Miami Beach resort was one of her famous dad’s haunts back in the day, along with his fellow Rat Packers.
Deana, with an 18-piece orchestra, will perform such hits from the Great American Songbook as Everybody Loves Somebody, Ain’t That A Kick In The Head and Fly Me to the Moon, plus holiday classics.
The 66-year-old crooner, who splits her time between Branson, Missouri and Beverly Hills, California, shares that audiences often get misty when they see her sing.
“They approach me afterward and tell me personal or funny stories like how Dad fixed their flat tire or congratulated them on their anniversary and how much respect they had for him,” she says. “I always hear, ‘I’m his biggest fan.’ ”
The family resemblance helps: “People also say, ‘You’re just like him. I feel your dad’s presence up there with you.’”
One question that has sort of fallen away over the years: “No one really asks if he drank so much. They pretty much know that was a gimmick.”
Hardcore Dean Martin fans will appreciate the fact that a movie based on Deana’s 2004 memoir, Memories Are Made Of This, is inching closer to reality.
Actress Bonnie Hunt (who penned Return to Me) is on board for the screenplay and Joe Mantegna, who played Martin in HBO’s 1998 film The Rat Pack, is directing. Deana’s role is set to go to Jennifer Love Hewitt.
“We’re in no rush — Jennifer just had her baby and Joe has another year of Criminal Minds,” Martin explains, “but it’s happening. We want to do this respectfully, with a sense of humor — in the right way.”
As for who will play Dino himself: “Who knows? Maybe it will be one of those talented kids from The Voice or America’s Got Talent. Each one is better than the next!”
While we may all miss Dean Martin, his daughter doesn’t think the laid-back entertainer who died in 1995 would fare too well in the Internet era.
“He was such a simple man. He’d get up early, play golf and be home for dinner. He was also dedicated to his craft and wouldn’t have time for things like [social media].”
Doubtful he’d even have a cellphone.
“He’d never answer the phone,” Deana recalls. “He was funny. He’d say, ‘I don’t like the chit, I don’t mind the chat.’ He was a different kind of person.”
Packages at the Fontainebleau start at $299, including room, two passes to the BleauLive performance by Martin (and Michael Martocci), access to the BleauLive private lounge throughout the weekend and more. www.fontainebleau.com