Name at birth: Joseph Abraham Gottlieb
For a time in the early 1960s Joey Bishop was one of the hottest standup comedians in America. Bishop started as a vaudeville-style entertainer in Philadelphia, and by the 1950s he was doing solo standup. He began opening for Frank Sinatra and eventually became part of Sinatra's so-called Rat Pack, along with Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr. and Peter Lawford. Bishop also became a regular on television: he was a sidekick on Jack Paar's Tonight Show and from 1961-65 he had his own sitcom, The Joey Bishop Show (which co-starred Bill Bixby and Joe Besser of Three Stooges fame). From 1967-69 he hosted his own late-night talk show, also called The Joey Bishop Show, with Regis Philbin as his sidekick. The show went head-to-head with Johnny Carson for two years, until Bishop was succeeded by Dick Cavett. Though he's best known for light comedy, Bishop also had serious roles in the war films The Naked and the Dead (1958) and Delta Force (1986).