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Frank Sinatra's early cameos

Updated on June 14, 2015

Major Bowes Amateur Theater Of The Air

Rko; directed by John H. Auer, released 1935

Sinatra, aged nineteen at the time, appeared twice in this series of shorts filmed at Biograph Studios in The Bronx, as a waiter in The Nightclub and as a part of a blackface troupe in The Big Minstrel Act.

Las Vegas Nights

Paramount; Ralph Murphy, 1941

This minor musical comedy starring Bert Wheeler; known in Britain as The Gay City, features a few songs from The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, but only one with Sinatra ("I'll Never Smile Again"), and even that is interrupted by the dialogue.

Ship Ahoy

MGM; Edward Buzzell, 1942

This time Sinatra has two songs -"The Last Call For Love" and "Poor You"- and a little more screen time. Eleanor Powell and Red Skeleton star and the Dorsey orchestra forms part of the plot -they are hired along with Powell's dance group to perform on a floating nightclub in Puerto Rico -but Bert Lahr's eccentric comedy dominates the picture.

Reveille With Beverly

Columbia; Charles Barton, 1943

"Romance on the beam! Rhythm in the groove! Laughs on the loose!", according to the tagline. Future Sinatra co-star Ann Miller plays a record salesgirl who becomes a disc-jockey for soldiers. Sinatra is once more a minor singing attraction. But the word going round that Frankie could be seen crooning "Night And Day", backed by a host of chic female piano players, helped to make the picture a modest hit.

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