Warren Beatty doesn’t get as much play as a Hollywood icon as he deserves. Even we didn’t realize the extent of his success.
He’s been nominated for Oscars for acting, writing and directing. He wrote Bulworth. At 62. He was part of the inner circles of multiple presidential campaigns. “You’re So Vain” is, despite Carly Simon’s protestations, about him.
And the guy’s chin-hair combination is maybe the greatest in the history of American cinema.
Warren Beatty on the phone as he campaigns for Senator George McGovern’s Democratic presidential nomination.
Leading up to his 1972 presidential bid, Senator George McGovern, who died over the weekend at the age of 90, met with a group of Hollywood celebrities at the home of Shirley MacLaine. Since he was not well-known and had little support within the Democratic Party, it was decided that the entertainment industry could lend the McGovern campaign some much-needed credibility, charisma and cash.
And so a new generation of Hollywood liberal activists emerged, the first to do so since McCarthyite blacklists of the early ’50s had driven showbiz liberalism deep into the walk-in closets of Malibu and Mulholland Drive.
Warren Beatty, MacLaine’s brother, scheduled a series of high-profile concerts, fundraisers and East Hampton pickup baseball games, attended by the likes of Jack Nicholson, Burt Lancaster, Dustin Hoffman, Jon Voight and so on. “We got involved because we were people who cared,” Norman Lear told The Hollywood Reporter on Sunday.
As such, we thought it a fitting tribute to the fallen senator to eulogize him in a pictorial we’re calling:
Once upon a time, Warren Beatty was a pretty sharp guy. And circa 1967’s Bonnie and Clyde, he was one of the sharpest men in California—pushing the French New Wave into Hollywood, head-faking studio heads for a percentage of the gross and walking away from the movie with a cool $27 million.
So we thought we’d take a look back at the classic bank robber flick, and all its glorious gangster suits, billowy shirtsleeves and invisi-ties.
As more than one rapper has memorably commented, haters are everywhere. Eventually, they were bound to get around to Warren Beatty.
A recent Entertainment Weekly post took aim at the actor’s AFI nomination, charging Beatty with a thin filmography and a late career full of clunkers. We’re not going to defend *Ishtar*—although some have—but judging Beatty by that standard is like judging Michael Caine by *The Muppet Christmas Carol*. Let’s remember the good times, shall we?