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Annette Bening Says Husband Warren Beatty's Intelligence Is 'Biggest Aphrodisiac': 'Funny and Super Smart'

Annette Bening and Warren Beatty met while making their 1991 film 'Bugsy' and married in 1992

<p>ARNAL/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images</p> Annette Bening and Warren Beatty in 1992

ARNAL/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

Annette Bening and Warren Beatty in 1992

Annette Bening is recalling her first impressions of her husband of nearly 32 years, Warren Beatty.

As the Nyad actress, 65, appeared on The Drew Barrymore Show, she recalled first meeting Beatty, now 86, on the set of their 1991 movie Bugsy. Beatty starred in the film as early-20th-century mobster Benjamin Siegel (aka "Bugsy"), while Bening played his girlfriend, Virginia Hill.

"He was making this movie. They hired me to play the woman in the movie, and, yeah, we fell in love," Bening recalled. When Drew Barrymore, 48, asked whether the pair felt "love at first sight," Bening laughed and said Beatty claims he fell in love instantly.

"So, for me, I have to be honest, I was going to meet him and he was incredibly intelligent. That was honestly the most — [that was] the biggest aphrodisiac," she said. "Funny and super smart. Now, he is also very handsome."

"That doesn't hurt. He's not Warren Beatty for nothing," Barrymore added.

"It didn’t hurt," Bening agreed. "I thought, ‘Wow, this is quite a guy.’ "

Related: Annette Bening Says Warren Beatty Keeps Valentine's Gifts 'Economical' After 30 Years of Marriage

<p>Vinnie Zuffante/Getty Images</p> Annette Bening and Warren Beaty on March 14, 1992

Vinnie Zuffante/Getty Images

Annette Bening and Warren Beaty on March 14, 1992

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Beatty previously told PEOPLE he was taken with Bening immediately when they met. He famously told Bugsy director Barry Levinson, "I'm going to marry her," after his first meeting with Bening.

However, back in 2016, he noted that he promised Bening not to hit on her while they worked together on Bugsy — but by the end of shooting, he asked her out to dinner.

Bening said on The Drew Barrymore Show that she initially approached meeting Beatty as a strictly professional relationship. The pair married in 1992.

"I really thought about it professionally, to be honest, I really did when I first met him," she said. "I didn’t think that there would be, like, a thing between us. I think marriage is like the greatest thing and greatest challenge to really make it all work and to stay together, and that is the thing that I am so, so proud of with us."

Related: Behind the True Story of Annette Bening’s Netflix Movie Nyad: All About Marathon Swimmer Diana Nyad

<p>Amy Sussman/Getty Images</p> Annette Bening and Warren Beatty on Sept. 25, 2021

Amy Sussman/Getty Images

Annette Bening and Warren Beatty on Sept. 25, 2021

Beatty and Bening now share four kids. Back in 2016, Beatty told PEOPLE he was so taken by Bening at their first meeting that he "remember[ed] losing interest in the garlic chicken I was eating within 20 seconds." He joked, "And the garlic chicken had been very good."

Bening shared with PEOPLE in 2022 that Beatty proved "very talkative" when they first met. "He was very passionate about the movie that he was about to make," she said at the time. "He had a lot to say — and he was charming, for sure."

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