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|Also Known As:||Henry Warren Beaty||Died:|
|Born:||March 30, 1937||Cause of Death:|
|Birth Place:||Richmond, Virginia, USA||Profession:||actor, director, producer, screenwriter, cocktail lounge pianist, rat catcher (in a Virginia movie theater), construction worker|
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speak out against the growing tide of right-wing ideology that had engulfed modern politics â¿¿ and in doing so, attracts a sizable following. An exceptionally risky and delicate project on nearly every front â¿¿ from the casting of poet and political activist Amiri Baraka, to the romance between Beatty and African-American actress Halle Berry, to Bulworth's adoption of hip-hop rhymes and dress to deliver his message â¿¿ "Bulworth" managed to connect with audiences, who admired Beatty's bravado and willingness to put forward a bold political statement on film which would foreshadow the future of politics. Academy voters also acknowledged his gutsy move by nominating its screenplay in 1999.Politics had always been part of Beatty's personality â¿¿ in addition to his relationships with J.F.K. and George McGovern, Beatty had also campaigned tirelessly for Robert F. Kennedy during the late 1960s, and helped introduce the idea of the "benefit concert" by bringing together Barbra Streisand, James Taylor and Simon and Garfunkel to raise funds for McGovern's campaign in 1972. Later, Beatty would lend his name and words to presidential runs for McGovern's former campaign manager, Senator Gary Hart, in 1984 and...
speak out against the growing tide of right-wing ideology that had engulfed modern politics â¿¿ and in doing so, attracts a sizable following. An exceptionally risky and delicate project on nearly every front â¿¿ from the casting of poet and political activist Amiri Baraka, to the romance between Beatty and African-American actress Halle Berry, to Bulworth's adoption of hip-hop rhymes and dress to deliver his message â¿¿ "Bulworth" managed to connect with audiences, who admired Beatty's bravado and willingness to put forward a bold political statement on film which would foreshadow the future of politics. Academy voters also acknowledged his gutsy move by nominating its screenplay in 1999.
Politics had always been part of Beatty's personality â¿¿ in addition to his relationships with J.F.K. and George McGovern, Beatty had also campaigned tirelessly for Robert F. Kennedy during the late 1960s, and helped introduce the idea of the "benefit concert" by bringing together Barbra Streisand, James Taylor and Simon and Garfunkel to raise funds for McGovern's campaign in 1972. Later, Beatty would lend his name and words to presidential runs for McGovern's former campaign manager, Senator Gary Hart, in 1984 and 1988. In 1999, Beatty made what sounded like overtures to a run for the Presidency when he expressed disappointment in Democratic candidates Bill Bradley and Vice President Al Gore. A flurry of press activity followed Beatty's consultation with various political advisors, but by September of that year, he announced that he would not seek the candidacy. However, the Reform Party, which was reeling over radical conservative Pat Buchanan's switch from Republican to their camp, pressed Beatty to reconsider. Despite pressure from everyone from Donald Trump to Ariana Huffington, Beatty remained steadfast in his decision not to run. In 2005, Beatty again surfaced as a possible political candidate in a special election launched by California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to pass several ballot measures on political spending, energy regulation, and parental notification for teens seeking abortions. Beatty campaigned against the election in person and on radio, and when the measures were defeated in 2005, speculation grew that he would run against Schwarzenegger in the 2006 election. Beatty quickly nixed the notion, but added that he would consider a run for office if he could add to the debate in a positive manner.
Beatty's film career went dormant after "Town and Country" and "Bulworth," though he was courted for several high-profile projects, including Quentin Tarantino's "Kill Bill" (2005), in which he was slated to play uber-pimp and killer Bill, but soon departed. His suggestion that Tarantino cast David Carradine in the role led to the latter's career revival. He was also considered for the role of president in Tim Burton's "Mars Attacks" (1995), but was replaced by longtime friend Jack Nicholson; Jack Horner in "Boogie Nights" (1995), but Burt Reynolds took the role; and two turns as Richard Nixon â¿¿ in Oliver Stone's "Nixon" (1995) and Ron Howard's "Frost/Nixon," (2008). As befitting a filmmaker of his stature, he was honored with several top awards by the creative community, including the Irving Thalberg Award in 2000, the Kennedy Center Honors in 2004, honorary chairman status of the Stella Adler Studio (replacing Marlon Brando) in 2006, the Cecil B. DeMille Award from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association at the 2007 Golden Globes, and the recipient of the AFI Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008. Meanwhile, word spread in 2011 that Beatty was returning to the directorâ¿¿s chair for the pseudo-biopic "The Rules Donâ¿¿t Apply," in which he planned on playing mogul Howard Hughes, who has an affair with a younger woman later in life. the film's legacy â¿¿ a synonym for box office failure â¿¿ could not be dispelled.
Undaunted, Beatty launched into another high-profile project for his next picture â¿¿ the long-gestating film version of the comic strip "Dick Tracy" (1990). Beatty corralled an impressive collection of stars to fill out the gallery of grotesques created by Chester Gould, including Al Pacino, James Caan, Dustin Hoffman, and Henry Silva, as well as netted pop music superstar Madonna to add sex appeal as femme fatale, Breathless Mahoney. Not surprisingly, Beatty's off-screen involvement with Madonna was duly covered by the press and in her feature documentary, "Truth or Dare" (1991), in which it was painfully apparent that the Beatty/Madonna combo was a mismatched couple from the start. The picture, which was noted for both its impressive photography by Vittorio Storaro, its use of only six primary colors in its imagery, and for the wall-to-wall promotional campaign carried out in the summer of 1990, resulted in massive returns at the box office, making it the ninth highest grossing film of that year and the recipient of several Oscar nominations. By the accounts of several participants, including Disney chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg and composer Danny Elfman, the shoot was a difficult one, resulting in Beatty choosing not to direct another picture until 1998's "Bulworth." A legal battle over "Dick Tracy" would later erupt in 2005 when Beatty filed suit against Tribune Media Services over ownership of the rights to Dick Tracy on film and television, which the actor claimed he legally received in 1985.
Beatty segued from lawman Dick Tracy to notorious real-life gangster Bugsy Siegel in Barry Levinson's "Bugsy" (1991). The film, which he also produced, earned countless Oscar nominations â¿¿ including a Best Actor nod for Beatty â¿¿ and a Golden Globe for Best Picture, also became notable as the project on which Beatty met Annette Bening, an acclaimed stage actress and Oscar nominee for her dazzling turn in Stephen Frears' "The Grifters" (1990). As with so many of his female co-stars, Beatty began a romance with Bening, but unlike his commitment-phobic tendencies in the past, the inveterate bachelor surprised Hollywood by marrying her in 1992. Four children (three daughters and a son) followed between 1992 and 2000, with the couple considered almost Hollywood royalty. Certainly Bening benefited at the onset from just a PR standpoint, as the one woman who had made perhaps the most notorious bachelor in the history of film finally settle down.
Flush with newfound domestic happiness and onscreen success, Beatty began work on several new projects â¿¿ the first of which was "Love Affair" (1994), a remake of the 1957 Cary Grant-Deborah Kerr romance "An Affair To Remember" (1957). Beatty and Bening took the leads, and despite the presence of a rare (and final) screen appearance by Katherine Hepburn, the film failed to ignite any heat with audiences. Undaunted, Beatty began work on "Town and Country" (2001) in 1998. The costly comedy, which co-starred former flame Diane Keaton and Garry Shandling, quickly ran into production troubles, most notably from producer Beatty himself, who insisted on countless retakes. Shooting ran on into 1999, and several cast members (including Keaton and Shandling) had to take leave of the film to work on other projects. By 2000, reshoots were required (which added significantly to the budget), as well as a whole new script (by Buck Henry, who was the last in a long line of new writers for the film). When the picture arrived in theaters in 2001, the negative advance notice helped to crush any hopes of ticket sales. Its final tally was just over $10 million â¿¿ some $80 million shy of its production costs.
No matter the troubles during the turbulent birthing of "Town and Country," Beatty soon managed to turn out one of his finest and most ambitious films to date. In "Bulworth" (1998), which he directed, co-wrote, and co-produced, he told the story of a faded Democratic senator (Beatty) who decides to have himself killed in order for his family to claim a sizable insurance policy. Realizing that his days were numbered, he decides to lowed hi
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He was named as the Harvard Hasty Pudding Man of the Year in 1975.
"Beatty may not have had Brando's fire, or Dean's ethereality, or Gable's gruff machismo, but he had humor, athletic grace, and something, in quantity, that all the great ones have had: mystery. Looks and talent will take you a long way in Hollywood, but if you seem to withhold some crucial part of yourself--whether it exists or not--you may enter the pantheon at will. Add salient sexuality and the mixture becomes combustible." --James Kaplan in Entertainment WeeklY December 20, 1991.
"The legend began early. The columns began toting up the women Beatty kept company with--Natalie Wood, Joan Collins, Elizabeth Taylor, just to name some early brunets--and the public took notice. The men of Hollywood, who respect such things, had already noticed. (His catch phone-phrase to women--"What's new, pussycat?"--became a movie title and song.)" --From Entertainment Weekly, December 20, 1991.
"The only man to get to the mirror faster than me." --former fiancee Joan Collins
Named a Commander of the French Order of Arts and Letters in 1992.
"Prior to meeting Bening, Beatty has been quoted as saying to ["Bugsy" director], Barry Levinson, 'The thing about Bugsy Siegel ... he was very promiscuous throughout his life, until he met Virginia Hill [the role Bening was to play] ... When they got together, he never went after another woman ... He found someone who accepted him for what he was.'" --From an interview with Dominick Dunne in Vanity Fair, September 1994.
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