2005-09-04 13:53:43 UTC
A NEW warts-and-all biography of Warren Beatty could become a thorn in
his side should he decide to run against Arnold Schwarzenegger for
In "Warren Beatty: A Private Man," due out from Harmony next month,
Suzanne Finstad reveals the reticent playboy's strong religious
upbringing that's so much at odds with his Hollywood lifestyle.
Beatty's father was an alcoholic Southern Baptist prone to violent
outbursts, Finstad reports. One of the first words Beatty's sister,
Shirley MacLaine, learned at age 2 was "binge."
Elsewhere in the biography:
n Just as he was going off to film 1961's "Splendor in the Grass,"
Beatty knocked up girlfriend Joan Collins and took her to New Jersey to
get an illegal "backstreet" abortion. Collins had "hysterical" second
thoughts, Finstad writes, but Beatty was "distraught" and "panicked"
that a child out of wedlock would damage his career.
n Beatty went to great lengths to get homosexual playwright Tennessee
Williams to cast him as a gigolo in 1961's "The Roman Spring of Mrs.
Stone." Williams once recalled that Beatty came to his hotel room clad
only in a bathrobe: "I said, 'Go home to bed, Warren. I said you had
n Beatty was rarely faithful to the babes he bedded, but his sexual
skills got mixed reviews. He had a one-night stand with a 16-year-old
Cher while he was dating Natalie Wood. "What a disappointment!" she
later recalled. "Not that he wasn't technically good, [but] I didn't
n The only reason Beatty didn't have sex with "Bonnie and Clyde"
co-star Faye Dunaway, is because he's such an intense method actor, and
Clyde was supposed to be impotent.
n At the age of 22, the incredibly vain actor got hair plugs so he'd
always have a luscious mane and used a pin to groom his eyelashes. He
used to wear layers of specially cut T-shirts under his suits to make
him look more sculpted and used lifts in his shoes to appear taller.
n When he made "Shampoo," Beatty denied that Don Juan types like
himself are all latent homosexuals. "Some of them just like
[bleep]ing," he declared. When Rex Reed wrote a nasty profile on him,
Beatty blamed Reed's "homosexual anxiety."
Beatty did not return calls requesting comment on the book.