Brando, McQueen, Mitchum, Burton: Hollywood Bad Boys Of The '60s

By | October 4, 2018

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Marlon Brando as Stanley Kowalski in 'A Streetcar Named Desire'. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

We've always been interested in celebrity antics and manly recklessness, but in the 1960s it seemed that bad behavior rose to an art form. The exploits of Hollywood's bad boys -- Brando, Burton, Mitchum, McQueen, Beatty and others -- inspired awe and envy. They were just actors, after all, but their on-screen personae tended to be inspiringly masculine, and we were eager to believe that the flesh-and-blood men were too. Steve McQueen's obsession with speed, Marlon Brando's brawling, Warren Beatty's womanizing -- these larger-than-life exploits were what we wanted in our idols. Hollywood bad boys of the '60s made entertaining movies and led even more entertaining private lives.

Robert Mitchum

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The star of Cape Fear and Night of the Hunter, among numerous other films, Robert Mitchum took on characters that were rowdy, edgy, and antiheroes. Mitchum himself was no stranger to life on the wild side. The former semi-pro boxer was busted for drugs on more than one occasion and even served a sentence of 43 days on a prison farm. The run-in with the law only helped to reinforce Mitchum’s bad boy status. Oh, did we mention that he also served on a chain gang back when he was a teenager? He escaped the chain gang and hitched a ride on rail cars until he eventually made it to California.