Beatty's looks and sensitive acting plus Elia Kazan's directing led to a smashing debut opposite Natalie Wood in Splendor in the Grass (1961). Bonnie and Clyde (1967) brought Beatty Oscar nominations as both producer and actor, launching his career as a major Hollywood player (both artistic and romantic). Beatty earned his first directing nomination (with Buck Henry) for the 1978 hit Heaven Can Wait.
Since the 1970s, Beatty's output has been sporadic but always interesting. His one Oscar win to date has been for directing Reds (1981); his 14 nominations include Shampoo (co-writer), Bugsy (actor) and Bulworth (co-writer). He was the 2000 recipient of the Irving Thalberg Award.
When Southern beauty Marla Mabrey arrives in Hollywood to work for Howard Hughes, his driver, Frank Forbes, meets her at the airport. Sparks fly immediately between the two, but dating among the billionaire's employees is strictly prohibited.