Photos by Andrew Segreti
Christopher James Baker
Christopher James Baker is one of the select few actors to portray characters for both Marvel Television and DC Entertainment. Christopher stars as a series regular in a top-secret DC character role on the DC Universe Series, STARGIRL. You can catch up on the First season streaming now on the CW and DC Universe thorugh HBO Max! Created by Geoff Johns (Aquaman, Wonder Women 1984, Arrow and The Flash), STARGIRL is based on DC characters and follows a high school sophomore as she inspires an unlikely group of young heroes to stop the villains of the past. The new drama reimagines Stargirl and the very first superhero team, the Justice Society of America, in an unpredictable series. Chris stars opposite Brec Bassinger, Joel Mchale and Luke Wilson.
He additionally starred in Marvel's AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC) as Malachi, a mysterious assassin from a distant planet. Malachi will be one of six new characters joining season 6 of the hit Marvel series, created by Josh Whedon, Jed Whedon, and Mauissa Tancharoen.
He’s been a series regular on HBO’s True Detective; played a major, recurring role on Netflix’s Ozark; and featured on The Rookie, Shades of Blue, Bull, The Good Cop, Gotham, and The Blacklist.
The Australia native has been acting, writing, and directing for more than 25 years. He is a master of dialects, including Russian, American, British, and Czech.
Photo by Daniela Spector
Q & A with Christopher James Baker!
Q: When did you first notice your passion & gift for acting?
A: After a serious scolding, my Mom told me when I was about 12 that I was such a good liar I should become an actor. It kind of stuck…
Q: What has it been like on the set of Stargirl?
A: It was a really special group of people to work with and making something that’s about superheroes is just inherently fun and a little bit crazy. So the set was always a lot of fun.
Q: What was the audition process like? Were you nervous?
A: I’m based in New York and they were casting in LA, so I made a self tape at home which is a lot less pressure than going into a casting room. But at this stage I’ve done so many auditions that I rarely get nervous, and if I do I can use that energy in the work.
Q: Tell us about your character.
A: I play a super villain called Brainwave. He is telepathic and telekinetic and can do all sorts of wonderfully horrible things just by thinking about it.
Q: Can you share one of your funniest moments on set?
A: One day at lunch the caterers set up a Karaoke machine, and Nelson Lee who plays Dragon King sang “hello” by Lionel Ritchie in character as Dragon King. I haven’t laughed that hard in a while.
Q: What was it like being on the set of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.?
A: That was another amazing set, but whereas with Stargirl we were all new, I joined SHIELD during season 6, so they’d all been working together for over 7 years so it was like joining a big family for a party.
Q: Do you have a favorite character from this show?
A: I think Shiv (played by Meg DeLacy) is my favorite.
Q: How do you prepare for the characters you play? What is your character study process like?
A: It changes from role to role. I find in some ways the character dictates the process. I have this big tool bag of techniques I can use to build a character and it’s a matter of trying things and seeing what resonates. There’s an analogy that I like which is; the character ends up being like the smell of soup. You make this big pot of soup, you keep adding ingredients as you go, throwing ideas in and letting the pot simmer away, and the character is the refined smell wafting up. You keep tinkering until it smells right.
Q: What was your greatest struggle as an actor to date?
A: I was acting in Australia for many years before moving to New York, and then it was just like starting over. Besides doing off-off Broadway theatre, it was 5 years before I got my first film job. That whole time was a struggle, dark and very hard at times. I think we invest so much of our self worth on how “successful” we are, as people and artists in particular, and that judgement of success is so arbitrary, and for me certainly not related to anything that defines happiness.
Q: Has achieving your level of celebrity been hard on you? Why yes? Or why no?
A: No, I’m grateful for the fact that I’ve been able to work and can still count on one hand how many times I’ve been “recognized”.
Q: What do you do to work on your career and acting skills?
A: I learn more and more with every job from everyone I work with. Other actors, directors, cinematographers, all the incredibly talented people on each set. I’m in love with film making and am always searching to learn more about any aspect of it that I can.
Q: What advice can you give to aspiring actors?
A: Find your tribe. Find other actors, get together, start a theatre company, put on plays. Write your own plays! Make short films. Above all, make your own work. Find the people you love to play with and make the play your work.
Q: What would you like to say to your fans?
A: Put on Lou Reed’s “Perfect day”, turn it up. I wish I spent it with you.
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