Back in 1981, Warren Beatty was still known as an unrepentant ladies man and party boy. Having made his name in films like Splendor in the Grass and Shampoo, Beatty was still the go-to guy when a romantic lead was required. Everyone was happy with the arrangement -- except Warren Beatty. Tired of being a sex symbol, he wanted to make films with substance and a point of view, and Reds was the perfect opportunity. After the success of Heaven Can Wait, he could pretty much call the shots on his next project and of course, what he really wanted to do was direct.

Written and directed by Beatty, Reds was considered the ultimate vanity project; at over 200 minutes long, the film is the story of American journalist John Reed and his coverage of the Russian Revolution. Critics thought that Beatty was in way over his head, but they were wrong; the film became a hit and garnered 21 Oscar nominations, including three wins; Beatty (as director), Maureen Stapleton, and Vittorio Storaro (cinematography). The film also starred some of Reed's famous friends; Diane Keaton (Louise Bryant), Jack Nicholson (Eugene O'Neil), and Paul Sorvino (Louis Fraina).

Check out this great video with Warren as he discusses Reds and why its subject matter is still important 25 years later.

[via Yahoo! Movies-DVD]