There are countless famous siblings working in the entertainment industry but one of the most notable from Hollywood's Golden Age is Shirley MacLaine and her brother Warren Beatty. If you didn't realize these two actors were related...surprise! MacLaine took on a tweaked version of her middle name when pursuing a career that differentiated the two in the industry. Interestingly enough, after decades of performing, the two siblings have never collaborated and probably never will. At least according to MacLaine who told Closer Weekly she doesn't think they'd "make a good team."
The Beaty siblings (yes, Warren added a 't' to his last name) grew up in Richmond, Virginia. Shirley Maclean Beaty, named after famous child actress Shirley Temple, was a talented dancer who initially moved to New York City after high school to pursue a career on Broadway. After working as an understudy in The Pajama Game, Maclaine was discovered by a film producer and signed to Paramount Pictures.
After making her film debut in Alfred Hitchcock's The Trouble with Harry, which earned her a Golden Globe Award, Maclaine went on to appear in numerous notable films including Around the World in 80 Days, Hot Spell, Some Came Running, and The Apartment opposite Jack Lemmon which received 10 Academy Award nominations (including Best Actress), winning Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Screenplay.
But her younger brother has also found incredible success in the industry. Similar to his sister, Beatty was interested in performing early on. Though he turned down football scholarship offers to attend Northwestern University in Chicago, he dropped out after his first year to study acting with Stella Adler in New York City. After a few years of appearing on various TV shows, Beatty made his big-screen debut in Splendor in the Grass opposite Natalie Wood, earning a Golden Globe nomination. The actor became well known for starring in films like Bonnie and Clyde, Heaven Can Wait, Dick Tracy, Bugsy, and more. He even frequently collaborates with his wife of nearly 30 years, actress Annette Bening.
One notable thing about the two siblings is that neither of them has slowed down as they've aged. If anything, they seem busier than ever. Over the years, MacLaine has appeared in Terms of Endearment with Debra Winger, In Her Shoes with Cameron Diaz, Steel Magnolias with Sally Field and Julia Roberts, Rumor Has It with Kevin Costner, and even played an elf in the 2019 Disney Christmas film Noelle. Even her daughter, Sachi Parker, from her marriage to ex-husband Steve Parker, has numerous TV and film credits.
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In addition to continuing to appear in front of the camera, Beatty has also become a respected director known for films like Bulworth and Rules Don't Apply. Later in his career, Beatty has become well known for making history by reading the wrong Best Picture winner at the 2017 Oscars. MacLaine was also present at the awards show having previously presented the winner for the best foreign-language film with Charlize Theron. The legendary actress told Vanity Fair that she felt for her brother after the flub, which wasn't even his fault. He was handed the wrong envelope on-stage with his Bonnie and Clyde co-star Faye Dunaway.
"I'm concerned with how [Beatty] must have felt being so close to him," MacLaine explained. "I'm three years older, and I'm protective. We know how difficult it was for him, but it was also for me."
"I'm basically a mystic," she said. "And I'm wondering, 'What was that all about?' And I am not sure yet. I have to think about it some more. The one thing you learned about what occurred at the Oscars is that every instant of life is important. And anything like that can happen to you, driving in a car, leading a seminar, working at your desk and presenting an award."
Unlike his sister, Beatty has rarely given interviews over the years. He prefers keeping his private life to himself and spends his free time writing and working on films...of course outside of focusing on his family. The world was shocked when Annette Bening got the playboy actor to settle down in his 50s, but after having multiple children together, he's never been happier.
"Warren is not his age. He's timeless, he's fearless, he's just . . . very singular. He stays up with the times because of his kids, or just because he loves what he does. There's no one quite like him," actress Lily Collins, who starred in Beatty's film Rules Don't Apply, told Vanity Fair.
"Annette and Warren have created this amazing family who are, for all intents and purposes, 'normal,' and that's a testament to how they both raised them."