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Warren Beatty & Wife of 31 Years Annette Bening’s Relationship Started With a Broken Promise

Edduin Carvajal
Mar 06, 2022
03:00 P.M.
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Multi-awarded actor Warren Beatty and his wife, Annette Bening, have been married for over three decades, but the beginning of their relationship was out of the ordinary.


"Reds" star Warren Beatty has had one of the most successful careers in the entertainment industry as an actor, director, producer, and screenwriter.

His romance with "American Beauty" actress Annette Bening is also impressive. They tied the knot in the early 1990s and share four children. Read on and learn the details of their beautiful relationship.

Annette Bening and Warren Beatty in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, on January 18, 1992 [left] and in Hollywood, California on September 13, 2018 [right] | Source: Getty Images



Falling in love on movie sets is quite common. However, some actors avoid it because they've learned that on-set romances don't last. It's the Hollywood version of summer love.

Beatty and Bening's case is different. They worked together in the 1991's drama "Bugsy," and he knew she would change his life as soon as they met for lunch in preparation for the film. 

He admitted he only needed five to ten minutes to fall in love with her. Although Beatty was glad to meet Bening, he also mourned the "passing" of his womanizing way of life. 


Warren Beatty filming "Bonnie and Clyde" circa 1967 | Source: Getty Images

Bening was equally charmed. Her first impression of Beatty was that he was "incredibly intelligent," sharp, funny, and articulate. After seeing Bening, Beatty confessed he quickly lost interest in his delicious garlic chicken. 


However, Beatty was already a seasoned actor in his early 50s, well aware that on-set relationships were challenging. He pointed out that if two co-stars develop a romance, they play four characters instead of two.

Beatty told "Bugsy" director Barry Levinson that he would marry Bening. However, Beatty told Bening, 21 years his junior, that he would not hit on her during the movie. "I didn't ask," she replied.

Annette Bening and Warren Beatty on December 1, 2016 in Goleta, California | Source: Getty Images


The two kept things professional for the most part, but Beatty asked her out at the end of the film. He broke his promise, but she accepted his invitation, and their incredible love story began.

Beatty and Bening's relationship evolved quickly after that, even though they kept denying they were dating. She gave birth to their eldest child in January 1992, and they married two months later. 

Beatty was so enamored with his married life that he even took some time off the entertainment industry.

Annette Bening and Warren Beatty on September 12, 2017 in Toronto, Canada | Source: Getty Images


Bening revealed Beatty's proposal was not an over-the-top event. He popped the question and gave Bening an engagement ring "privately" during a quiet moment in their house

Although their marriage surprised Beatty's fans – mainly because of his ladies-man reputation – he confessed it was not a shock to him. Beatty said

"I always felt I wasn't trying to avoid marriage. I was trying to avoid divorce. I had no doubt when I met Annette that it was time to get married."



Two years after tying the knot, Beatty and Bening worked together in "Love Affair," a film Beatty also wrote and produced. Unfortunately, critics described it as a so-so movie that was not a disaster but "not good either." 

The film was less about the main characters and more about Beatty and Bening as a couple, mainly because it was all about a man who was never faithful to anybody falling in love with an elegant woman who would never allow herself to be taken for granted.

Beaning and Beatty's love persevered against all odds. They now share four children: Stephen, Benjamin, Isabel, and Ella. The actor confessed that having kids was the most significant thing that happened to him and his wife.


Annette Bening and Warren Beatty on June 09, 2019 in New York City | Source: Getty Images

Beatty was so enamored with his married life that he even took some time off the entertainment industry to focus on his family. He admitted the hiatus was necessary for his children to grow up with a normal life.


The "Love Affair" star pointed out that growing up with two famous parents was a "burden," so respecting his kids' privacy has always been mandatory. Beatty confessed

"I could go on and on and on and on talking about [my kids] because they're brilliant and fun. But no, I think you have to give them a break, and they have their privacy."

Warren Beatty, Annette Bening and their children on December 4, 2004 in Washington, D.C. | Source: Getty Images


Bening has a similar approach to protecting her kids' personal lives. She never speaks for her children or husband because it's "a rule." 

Still, she has shared some details about being a parent. After admitting she was not perfect, Bening said she was an "avid mother."

Stephen made headlines after coming out as transgender.

Annette Bening, Warren Beatty and three of their four children in April 2007 | Source: Getty Images


During her kids' teenage years, the actress admitted they kept teaching her new things about life even though she thought they were supposed to learn from her.

As per the secret to their long and successful marriage, Beatty confessed Bening kept surprising him every day by doing unexpected things

The actor revealed that he has never regretted leaving his womanizing lifestyle behind. After saying " I do, " he became a devoted husband and father, and he has lived the most "enthralling years" of his life with Bening and his four children.

Annette Bening on October 04, 2019 in London, England | Source: Getty Images



Although Bening and Beatty's children prefer to keep their lives away from the spotlight, their eldest child, Stephen, made headlines after coming out as transgender

Stephen, previously known as Kathlyn, was born a female but began the transition process at 14. He announced he was transgender in 2012 by uploading a video to We Happy Trans, thanking friends and peers for their support throughout the years.

Four years after Stephen's announcement, Beatty addressed his transition. The actor pointed out that his transgender activist and writer son was a "revolutionary, a genius, and my hero."


Beatty might be one of the biggest movie stars alive, but his children are not too thrilled about his fame. They have not even seen his or Bening's most iconic films! Beatty confessed

"I said to my 19-year-old last year, 'Have you ever seen Shampoo?' and she was like, 'Nooo.' So there's my legacy for you. At least around here."


Warren Beatty on June 8, 2017 in Hollywood, California | Source: Getty Images

For 22 years, Beatty, Bening, and their children lived in a Beverly Hills hilltop mansion. They sold it in 2012 for $6.7 million to New York hotelier and producer Jonathan Baker and moved to another Los Angeles property. 

Beatty and Bening's relationship is one of a kind, but she was not the first woman he proposed to. The actor supposedly asked his "Reds" co-star Diane Keaton to marry him, and when she turned him down, he took it out on her. Warren Beatty is full of surprises!