Australian actress Rebecca Rigg is known for portraying Gabe on “A Country Practice” (1983-1984), Kelly Newman in “L.A. Doctors” (1998-1999) and the antagonist Commandant Mele-On Grayza on “Farscape” (2002-2003). She also appeared in such television series as “Michael Hayes” (1997, as Lindsay Straus) and “The Mentalist” (2 episodes, 2009) and on the wide screen picked up an AFI nomination for her performance in “Fatty Finn” (1980). Other films she had acted in include “Hunting” (1991, with John Savage), “Jerry Maguire” (1996, with Tom Cruise), “Ellie Parker” (2005, with Naomi Watts) and “Fair Game” (2010, also with Watts).
Rigg has been married to actor Simon Baker since 1998 and they have three kids.
Childhood and Family:
Rebecca Jane Rigg was born on December 31, 1967, in Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. She attended the same high school in Sydney as the Academy Award winning actress Nicole Kidman.
In 1998, Rebecca married Australian actor Simon Baker (born July 30, 1969). Their children are Stella Breeze (born on August 8, 1993), Claude Blue (born in 1998) and Harry Friday (born on September 19, 2001). Kidman is godmother to Harry while Naomi Watts is godmother to Claude. The Bakers lived in Malibu, California, before moving back to Sydney. Rebecca was previously married to another man for four years.
A Country Practice
Rebecca Rigg was first cast as Sandra Harper in the Australian soap opera “The Restless Years,” which debuted in December 1977 and ran until late 1981. She made her film debut in “Fatty Finn” (1980), a remake of the 1927 Australian silent comedy “The Kid Stakes.” Directed by Maurice Murphy and written by Bob Ellis, a then-13 year old Rigg was nominated for an AFI in the category of Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her portrayal of Tilly. She went on to play Mercia King in “Doctors & Nurses” (1981), a film directed by Maurice Murphy that starred Pamela Stephenson, Bert Newton and Richard Meikle, and has an unaccredited part in the Ken Cameron directed drama “Monkey Grip” (1982), which was based on the novel of the same name by Helen Garner.
Rigg's big break arrived when she landed the role of Gabrielle “Gabe” Baker in the hit television series “A Country Practice,” created by James Davern. She was on the show from September 1983 to February 1984. Rigg originally made her debut on the show playing Kerry Jamieson in the 1982 episodes “A Little Knowledge: Part 1 and 2” before returning as Gabe the following year.
After leaving “A Country Practice,” Rigg portrayed Katrin in an episode of “Winners” called “Quest Beyond Time” (1985), supported Rachel Ward and Vernon Wells in the Aussie film “Fortress” (1986), and made her TV miniseries debut in the 1986 “The Great Bookie Robbery,” which won AFI Awards for Best Mini-Series and Best Achievement in Direction in a Mini Series. In 1987, Rigg landed the role of Angela Reddy in the television comedy series “Willing and Abel.” The same year, she also appeared in an episode of “The Flying Doctors” called “Every Day a Gift.”
Rigg next costarred with Barbara Carrera, Steve Bisley, Thaao Penghlis and Hal Holbrook in the TV miniseries “Emma: Queen of the South Seas” (1988), for director John Banas, was cast in the short lived Australian soap “Family and Friends” (1990), and portrayed Shirley Noonan in the miniseries adaptation of “Come in Spinner” (1990), which was well received by audiences and critics. She resumed her film career starring in Tony Wellington's “Raw Nerve” (1990), worked with John Savage, Kerry Armstrong, Jeffrey Thomas and Guy Pearce in Frank Howson's “Hunting” (1991) and playing the role of Cheryl in Mark Joffe's “Spotswood” (1992, known in the U.S. as “The Efficiency Expert”).
Rigg acted with her future husband, Simon Baker, on the drama series “E Street” between 1992 and 1993. She was then cast as a juror in the TV special “Joh's Jury” (1993), starred with Robert Loggia and Scott Bakula in “Mercy Mission: The Rescue of Flight 771,” which aired in the United States on December 13, 1993, and portrayed Jane Connor in the dramatic series “Fire” (2 episodes, 1995). She also played Kate Kenny in “Double Jeopardy: Part 1 and 2” of the series “Blue Heelers,” Mrs. Vansen in the pilot of “Space: Above and Beyond” and Helena Martinelli in the indie film “Tunnel Vision,” opposite Patsy Kensit and Robert Reynolds (all 1995).
In 1996, Rigg received a bit part in the successful movie “Jerry Maguire.” Written, directed, and co-produced by Cameron Crowe, the film was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and won the award for Best Supporting Actor (Cuba Gooding Jr.). The same year, she also appeared in episodes of the anthology series “Naked: Stories of Men” (“Fisherman's Wake”) and “Adrenalin Junkies.”
1997 saw Rigg play Tess in the TV film “The Guardian” (1997), starring Thomas Ian Griffith, and Lindsay Straus in the CBS series “Michael Hayes,” starring David Caruso and Ruben Santiago-Hudson. She also made a guest appearance on the UPN series “The Sentinel.” She next worked in the AFI Award winning TV film “The Day of the Roses” (1998), starring John Bach, Chris Betts and Aaron Blabey, and was cast in the American TV film “Alien Cargo” (1999). During 1998 to 1999, she also played the role of Kelly Newman on the CBS series “L.A. Doctors,” which starred Ken Olin, Matt Craven, Rick Roberts and Sheryl Lee. She appeared in 9 episodes of the series.
In the new millennium, Rigg returned to the small screen with a guest spot in “Outsiders” (2001), starring Abbie Cornish and Oliver Ackland. From 2002 to 2003, the actress played the recurring role of Commandant Mele-On Grayza on the science fiction series “Farscape,” which aired in the U.S. on the Sci-Fi Channel. In 2004, she reprised the role for the TV movie “Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars.”
In 2005, Rigg portrayed Sam in “Ellie Parker,” a comedy film written and directed by Scott Coffey that starred Naomi Watts. It was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival. The same year, she also appeared as Jenny Carmichael in the episode “False Convictions” of the Aussie series “All Saints.” In 2006, she costarred in the TV film “BlackJack: At the Gates,” which won an Awgie Award for Telemovie Original at the 2007 Australian Writers' Guild and Silver Plaque for Special Achievement: Direction at the 2007 Chicago International Film Festival.
In 2009, Rigg appeared twice in the CBS series “The Mentalist” (2008-2011), which starred her husband, Simon Baker. In 2010, she was reunited with Watts for the thriller “Fair Game,” which was an adaptation of the memoir “Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House” by Valerie Plame. It starred Watts as Plame and Sean Penn as Plame's husband, Joseph C. Wilson. Directed by Doug Liman, “Fair Game” received generally positive reviews from critics and was one of the official selections competing for the Palme d'Or at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival.