After first entering the entertainment business as a comic writer and performer, writer-director-producer and occasional onscreen performer Barry Levinson developed into a courageous filmmaker who took creative risks while scoring big commercial hits in several different genres. Having formed a comedy duo with actor Craig T. Nelson, Levinson became an Emmy-winning writer for "The Carol Burnett Show" (CBS, 1967-1978) before graduating to independent filmmaking with the poignant semi-autobiographical "Diner" (1982). Though he steeped himself in over-sentimentality with "The Natural" (1984), Levinson nonetheless directed a lasting homage to the greatness of baseball. In the latter half of the decade, Levinson scored two huge hits: the manic comedy-drama "Good Morning, Vietnam" (1987) and the Academy Award-winning drama, "Rain Man" (1988), both of which announced him as one of Hollywood's top directors. Meanwhile, he ventured into television by directing and producing episodes of "Homicide: Life on the Streets" (NBC, 1993-2000) while maintaining a steady, if unpredictable onscreen presence with "Bugsy" (1991), "Sleepers" (1996) and "Wag the Dog" (1997). Though he faltered in the next century with "Bandits" (2001), "Envy" (2003) and "Man of the Year" (2006), the several misses of his career failed to diminish his overall bankability.