Simon Baker

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Simon Baker
Simon Baker 2013 4.jpg
Baker in Paris at the French premiere of I Give It a Year, 2013
Born Simon Baker
(1969-07-30) 30 July 1969 (age 45)
Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
Other names Simon Denny
Simon Baker Denny
Occupation Actor, director
Years active 1987–present
Height 5 feet 10 inches (1.78 m)
Religion None
Spouse(s) Rebecca Rigg (m. 1998)
Children 3

Simon Baker (born 30 July 1969) is an Australian actor and director. In his television acting career, he is best known for his lead role in the CBS television series The Mentalist as Patrick Jane and as Nicholas Fallin in The Guardian.

In his film acting career, he is best known for the lead role of Riley Denbo in Land of the Dead and Christian Thompson in the film adaptation of The Devil Wears Prada, based on the 2003 novel of the same name.

Early life[edit]

Simon Baker was born to a high school English teacher, Elizabeth Labberton, and a groundskeeper/mechanic, Barry Baker, on July 30, 1969, in Launceston, Tasmania.[1] His parents divorced while he was still young. His mother later married Tom Denny, a butcher. Simon Baker also has a sister, currently a doctor in Australia, and three younger half brothers. By 1972, the family had moved from Launceston to Ballina, New South Wales, where Baker's parents hoped to secure better paying jobs. He attended St. Francis Xavier Catholic Primary School in Ballina and Ballina High School, graduating in 1986. In school, he was known as Simon Baker-Denny.

Acting career[edit]

Baker began acting on Australian television during the late 1980s using the name "Simon Denny". He first appeared in music videos for Melissa Tkautz ("Read My Lips") and Australian dance outfit Euphoria ("Love You Right") in 1991 before appearing in the successful series E Street, Home and Away and Heartbreak High. As "Simon Baker Denny" he was a co-star of the David Croft/Jeremy Lloyd sitcom pilot, Which Way to the War, which was not developed into a series.

Baker on the set of The Mentalist in March 2009.

In 1995, he was in an episode of the Australian television (ABC TV) series Naked (episode title: Blindside Breakaway) in the role of a rugby player. His character was an easy going mummy's boy until he met a girl who challenged his safe existence. He called the role "physically demanding" due to the fact most of the extras were actual rugby players.[2] At the time he referred to this role as an important opportunity as well as being "the best job I've had in my life". He went on to say it was going to be hard afterwards to want to do anything offered.[2]

He relocated to the United States, where he was cast in a small role in L.A. Confidential, which led to further opportunities in supporting roles in films. In 1998 he starred in a small, independent film by filmmaker Stephen Grynberg titled "Love from Ground Zero", and in 1999 appeared in Ang Lee's Ride with the Devil. In 2000, he played Michael Scott in Adam Collis's Sunset Strip. He also played an astronaut in Red Planet with Val Kilmer, Carrie-Anne Moss and Benjamin Bratt. He played the male lead in the television series The Guardian for three seasons beginning in 2001, and also appeared in The Affair of the Necklace. He played a distressed husband in 2004's Book of Love. In 2005, he starred as an altruistic hero in George A. Romero's Land of the Dead.

In 2006, he played Brian Kelly in the film Something New, writer Christian Thompson in The Devil Wears Prada, and had a leading role as Jeff in the short-lived television series Smith. After Smith, he returned to movies and played the role of Roderick Blank in Sex and Death 101 and Jack Bishop in Not Forgotten.

In 2008, Baker received the lead role of Patrick Jane, a consultant to the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in CBS's The Mentalist. In 2009, Baker was nominated for an Emmy Award for The Mentalist. In late 2009, Baker was also nominated for his second Golden Globe Award (for The Mentalist) and his first SAG Award for his work.

Baker has continued to act in movies during The Mentalist. He played Howard Hendricks in The Killer Inside Me,[3] Jared Cohen in Margin Call, and Guy Harrap in I Give It a Year.

Directing career[edit]

Baker made his directorial debut with the second season episode of The Guardian, "My Aim Is True". On The Mentalist he has directed an episode per season from the third season onwards. The episodes he has directed include "Red Moon" (season 3), "Blinking Red Light" (season 4), "Red Sails at Sunset" (season 5), "My Blue Heaven" (season 6), and a yet to be aired episode in season 7.

After The Mentalist ends, he plans to produce and direct a movie based on the novel Breath by Tim Winton.

Other activities[edit]

On 6 June 2010, he played in a charity football match for The Rest of The World team versus England on ITV's Soccer Aid 2010,[4] coming on as a substitute in the second half. The match went to a penalty shootout; Baker took a penalty which was saved by England celebrity goalkeeper, Jamie Theakston. The Rest of the World went on to win the shoot out and the match for the first time since the tournament started.

Personal life[edit]

Baker at a ceremony to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in February 2013.

In 1998, Baker married Australian actress Rebecca Rigg after five years of living together.[5] They have three children: Stella Breeze (born 8 August 1993), Claude Blue (born 1998), and Harry Friday (born 19 September 2001). Fellow Australian, actress Nicole Kidman, is godmother to Harry while actress Naomi Watts is godmother to Claude.[6] Baker and his family resided in Malibu, California,[7] before moving back to Sydney; they then returned to Los Angeles so Simon could appear on Smith, and later on The Mentalist.[5] He also owns property in Australia, near Byron Bay.[8]

Baker and his sons are fans of the Parramatta Eels in the Australian NRL.[9] His name first appeared in Who's Who in Australia in 2011.[10] In July 2009, Baker told PopMatters that he is an agnostic.[11]

In 2010, he was earning US$350,000 per episode of The Mentalist. At that time his net worth was US$25 million.[12] Shortly after he signed a contract that delivered a payment of US$30 million for his role as Patrick Jane.[13]

Honors[edit]

On 14 February 2013, Baker was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contributions to the entertainment industry. Baker's star can be found at 6352 Hollywood Blvd.[14]

In June 2012 was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences along with 175 other individuals.[15]

Commercials[edit]

Simon Baker was selected by the French perfume house Givenchy to be the face of the Fragrance "Gentlemen Only".[16] In it Baker walks down a pavement in pouring rain, whilst carrying an umbrella. He doesn't use his umbrella .... but when he sees a woman in red waiting for a taxi, he opens the umbrella and hands it over. The spot released 11 March 2013 also exists in a 33 sec version and reached a strong YouTube audience.

Baker also featured in an 18-month ad campaign for ANZ Bank in Australia and New Zealand starting in 2012.[17]

Since 2012, he has been a Longines Ambassador of Elegance [18] and featured in "Elegance is an attitude" advertising campaign which was shot in Chantilly Racecourse [19] as well as their magazine print campaign for the same slogan [20] shot by Le Studio Production SA.

Simon Baker fronted Samsung Electronics Australia's "Turn on Tomorrow" campaign featuring as announced in July 2010 [21] [22] He starred in a TV advertisement for Samsung Electronics Australia created by Leo Burnett Sydney which brings together all of Samsung's products in one 60-second TV spot.[23]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1987 Midnight Magic N/A Television film
1997 L.A. Confidential Matt Reynolds Credited as Simon Baker Denny
1997 Most Wanted Stephen Barnes Credited as Simon Baker Denny
1998 Restaurant Kenny
1998 Judas Kiss Junior Armstrong Credited as Simon Baker-Denny
1998 Love from Ground Zero Eric
1999 Ride with the Devil George Clyde
1999 Secret Men's Business Andy Greville Television film
2000 Sunset Strip Michael Scott
2000 Red Planet Chip Pettengill
2001 Affair of the Necklace, TheThe Affair of the Necklace Rétaux de Villette
2004 Book of Love David Walker
2005 Ring Two, TheThe Ring Two Max Rourke
2005 Land of the Dead Riley Denbo
2006 Something New Brian Kelly
2006 Devil Wears Prada, TheThe Devil Wears Prada Christian Thompson
2007 Sex and Death 101 Roderick Blank
2007 Key to Reserva, TheThe Key to Reserva Roger Thornberry Short film
2009 Lodger, TheThe Lodger Malcolm Slaight
2009 Not Forgotten Jack Bishop
2009 Women in Trouble Travis McPherson
2010 Killer Inside Me, TheThe Killer Inside Me Howard Hendricks
2011 Margin Call Jared Cohen Nominated—Gotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
Nominated—Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
2013 I Give It a Year Guy Harrap

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1989 Tales from the Crypt Uncredited extra Episode: "Only Skin Deep"
1992–1993 E Street Constable Sam Farrell Unknown episodes
1993 A Country Practice Stewart Waterman 2 episodes
1993 GP Ben Miller Episode: "A Family Affair"
1993–1994 Home and Away James Healy 6 episodes
1994 Which Way to the War Pvt Stan Hawke Episode: "Pilot"
1995 Naked N/A Unsold TV pilot
1995–1996 Heartbreak High Mr. Thomas 'Tom' Summers 8 episodes
1996 Naked: Stories of Men Gabriel Episode: "Blind-Side Breakaway"
1996 Sweat Paul Steadman Episode: #1.3"
2001–2004 Guardian, TheThe Guardian Nick Fallin 67 episodes
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Drama
Nominated—Prism Award for Performance in a Drama Series
2006–2007 Smith Jeff Breen 7 episodes
2008–present Mentalist, TheThe Mentalist Patrick Jane 138 episodes
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Drama
Nominated—People's Choice Award for Favorite TV Crime Fighter
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
Pending—People's Choice Award for Favorite Crime TV Drama Actor

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Nominated work Award Category Result
2015 The Mentalist People's Choice Award Favorite TV Crime Drama (season 6: with cast)

Favorite Crime Drama TV Actor

Nominated
2014 The Mentalist People's Choice Award Favorite TV Crime Drama (season 5: with cast) Nominated
2010 The Mentalist Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series (season 2) Nominated
2009 The Mentalist People's Choice Award Best new series (season 1: with cast) Won
2009 The Mentalist Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (season 1) Nominated
2009 The Mentalist Golden Globe Awards Best Performance by an Actor in a Dramatic Television Series (season 2) Nominated
2005 The Guardian Prism Awards Best Performance in a Drama Series Storyline Nominated
2004 E Street Logie Awards Most Popular Overseas Star Nominated
2002 The Guardian Family Television Awards Best Actor Won
2002 The Guardian Golden Globe Awards Best Performance by an Actor in a Dramatic Television Series Nominated
2000 Secret Men's Business Australian Film Institute Awards Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Telefeature or Mini-Series Nominated
1993 E Street Logie Awards Most Popular New Talent Won

References[edit]

  1. ^ Murray, Rebecca. "Simon Baker Talks About "Something New"". About.com. Retrieved 22 June 2010. I was raised a Catholic... 
  2. ^ a b TV Week magazine, 22 July 1995, pp 64–65. "A trying role" by Di Stanley.
  3. ^ The Killer Inside Me: Theatrical Trailer and One-Sheet Debut
  4. ^ Soccer Aid – Rest of the World team ITV Entertainment
  5. ^ a b "The Mentalist star Simon Baker on wife Rebecca Rigg and the children in Los Angeles". Daily Telegraph. 12 April 2011. Retrieved 29 June 2012. 
  6. ^ Brady, James (1 January 2009). "In Step With Simon Baker". Parade.com. Retrieved 28 December 2010. 
  7. ^ "Simon Baker:Actor". People.com. 13 May 2002. Retrieved 29 June 2012. 
  8. ^ "Simon Baker's $1.5 million coastal hideaway". Adelaide Now. 12 January 2010. Retrieved 29 June 2012. 
  9. ^ Walter, Brad (19 July 2010). "Even psychic couldn't predict this comeback". The Sydney Morning Herald. 
  10. ^ "Who's Who pack now boasts Siddle, Hamish and Andy and the Masterchef judges". heraldsun.com.au. 9 December 2010. 
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ http://www.celebritynetworth.com/richest-celebrities/actors/simon-baker-net-worth/
  13. ^ http://screenrant.com/mentalist-simon-baker-cbs-30-million-deal-mssny-93877/
  14. ^ http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-207_162-57569501/simon-baker-receives-star-on-hollywood-walk-of-fame/ | CBS News - Simon Baker receives star on Hollywood Walk of Fame
  15. ^ "Academy Invites 176 to Membership". The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. 29 June 2012. Retrieved 19 July 2013. 
  16. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1v-FW1bNQk | Simon Baker in the 17 sec TV Spot
  17. ^ http://mumbrella.com.au/simon-baker-is-back-in-new-global-anz-ads-116014
  18. ^ http://www.longines.com/ambassadors/Simon-Baker
  19. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-iS9eiJFnto
  20. ^ https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.442070209176161.94536.130170163699502&type=3
  21. ^ http://www.pressreleasepoint.com/samsung-australia-announce-simon-baker-new-brand-ambassador | press release
  22. ^ http://www.samsung.com/au/newsletters/dealers/august2010/av.html | Samsung Australia newsletter
  23. ^ http://www.bandt.com.au/news/archive/breaking-campaign-simon-baker-stars-in-samsung-821 | B&T magazine article

External links[edit]