From Italian magazine “Visto” September 11, 2014
(Thank you, Deborah A., for letting me know :))
Here is the link to the little poster included in the magazine.
Please note: this article seems to make a “creative merge” from old and new interviews we all already know, anyway the columnist managed to wrap it up quite nicely IMHO, at least for those Italian readers who know very little about him.
I apologize for any mistake.
Simon Baker, “The Mentalist” attractive star, confess: I’d be unfaithful to my wife only with Sophia Loren.
A smile that is worth millions. Simon Baker, 45. On the left, the Australian actor is pictured with his wife, fellow actress Rebecca Rigg, 46. The pair is together since 1991 but they married in 1998. Baker is one of the highest paid TV actors. He gains 10 millions of euros for one season of TM.
Female viewers got a major crush on him since he appeared on The Devil wears Prada. The year was 2006 and Simon played the intriguing writer Christian Thompson, the spectacled intellectual for whom the lead character, Andy Sachs, falls: an unexpected love at first sight for her, but also for we, to the point that even today many women cannot understand why she could prefer her cook fiancé to him at the end. A mystery. However, two years later, when The Mentalist (the show is returning on Rete 4 channel from September 10, with the new episodes of season 6) first aired, the overall crush becomes true love: Patrick Jane (the mentalist that solves federal cases in California) and his irresistible smile left us no way out.
Australian, from Tasmania, Baker owns the most beautiful green eyes of the small screen, how Americans female viewers, who voted him the Sexiest man on TV more than once, know very well. He denies and blushes, like all the shy people do. «I am over 40 and I have three children, I clearly do not consider myself sexy also because I am not on the market any more. Even my daughter cannot understand what have I to do with those lists». His wife, though, knows very well. «He is clearly a very sexy human being. I learnt that 23 years ago but, you know, he is still my silly old Baker».
A real rarity in Hollywood, Simon and Rebecca Rigg are together since 1991, when a mutual friend organized for them a blind date. «It was more a well-organized trap, but only later I became aware of it» he laughs. «I was invited to a dinner among friends and had not realized that making the two of us end together was their plan. Now we are married with children so I guess I really cannot complain». For Rebecca it was love at first sight. «He was such a naïve country boy, with the most charming smile» she told «After 6 weeks we were already living together». She practically put her career on hold for him (she was the pro between the two, already well known in Australia thanks to several TV shows) accepting small roles and prevalently devoting herself to being a mom, over that of Stella, now 21, also of Claude, 16 and Harry 13. «She is the rock in our relationship» he admits. «She is a strong, passionate woman, she is clever and not in the least jealous».
Not that she could have any reason to be jealous: their relationship was not affected by the great beauty of Rebecca’s two best friends, Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts, that are close to the couple and are also the godmothers of Claude and Harry. «If I could choose to make love with another woman I would say Sophia Loren in the ’60s.» Simon confessed «I’ve always been really drawn to that kind of sexual earthiness in European women, and Sophia Loren epitomize it».
He would do everything for his family and, for once, this is not the usual cliché Hollywood stars love so much to say. Because behind that charming smile that makes women swoon every week, lies a painful past. «My youth was quite complicated» he admits in a low voice «My parents separated when I was very young and, when my mother got married again, my stepfather gave me his surname. I never really got on with him, so when I reconnected with my dad at 18, I decided to change my name to become what I was meant to be in the first place». Disagreements with his stepfather also affected the beginning of his career. «I was raised in a rural area, he worked as a butcher and would never understood my dream to become an actor. So I told my parents I would have gone in Sydney to pursue medical studies but instead I wanted to become as Marcello Mastroianni and Jean Paul Belmondo».
One of his first jobs in the show business was in the video clip of an Australian pop band where Simon dances shirt off: the simple recollection is able to make him blush with embarrassment. «Yeah. My wife still teases me about it. Let’s say, what happened in the 90s stays in the 90s, you know». Then it was the turn of some Tv roles, one even in E-Street with Rebecca. «Unfortunately, work opportunities were few so, in 1995, I took my wife and daughter and we moved in LA. It was a big risk but after I landed my first part in a movie L.A Confidential, in which starred my friend Russell Crowe, all went good». And things went so good than the last year he was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.«The most important thing to me is to be able to provide for my family and The Mentalist gave me confidence and economic safety but I would not be here without Rebecca and Stella».
Yes because his eldest daughter, than 12-year-old, was the one who convinced him to take a role he was going to reject. «She was bored that afternoon, looking for something to read, so I gave her the script of The Devil wears Prada and two hours later she reappeared saying “Christian is kind of a dick but I guess you should take the part. This is a kind of movie my friends and I would like to see.”», he recalls showing one of his killer smiles. «Being a dad is the most difficult work in the world: you cannot be always a good dad, but when I am on the beach, with my children, well, there I am a really happy man».