Carroll Baker was born on 28 May 1931, in Johnstown, Pennsylvania USA, into a Roman Catholic family of Polish ancestry. She is a former actress who appeared in movies, on television and on stage, and known for numerous movie roles during appearances in the ‘50s and ‘60s in such as the movie ‘’Baby Doll’’ and ‘’Giant’’.
So just how rich is Carroll Baker, as of mid-2017? Authoritative sources report that Baker’s wealth is as high as $4 million, with her net worth accumulated from her acting career in the Hollywood, but includes income from her Broadway days, and writing as well.
Carroll Baker Net Worth $4 million
Carroll attended Greensburg Salem High School and is said to have been a prominent and successful student, appearing in school musicals and being a part of other school clubs and activities. Having moved to St. Petersburg, Florida, Baker enrolled into St. Petersburg College, and her career in the entertainment field began at that time. She went on to become a magician’s assistant, and joined a dance company later on. Wishing to pursue her career furthermore, Carroll moved to Queens, New York City, although during that time she was struggling financially, even to keep her apartment. Baker decided to develop her acting skills furthermore, and enrolled into the Actors Studio where she established a friendship with actor James Dean, whom she would work with later on. Her first jobs were appearances in several commercials, going on to play a couple of small television and movie roles, which established her net worth.
Having made her big screen debut in ‘’Easy to Love’’ in 1953, Carroll caught the eye of the media and due to the positive critiques she received, eventually appeared in two Broadway plays in 1953 – “Escapade” and “All Summer Long”. After turning down several movie roles, Baker made her big breakthrough in ‘’Giant’’, a 1965 Western drama movie, portraying Luz Benedict II alongside James Dean, Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson. In the same year, Baker got the role in ‘’Baby Doll’’, a dark comedy drama adapted from two Tennessee Williams’ one-act play; the role of a teenage bride married to the middle-aged owner of a cotton gin gained her a lot of recognition and critical praise in the acting industry, being her most notable part. However, the movie caused a lot of drama and received a backlash from Roman Catholic Church criticizing it for apparent lack of morals. Nonetheless, ‘’Baby Doll’’ achieved success in the box office, making $2.3 million in total, very significant at that time, and boosted her net worth.
In the following years, Carroll declined several movie roles which affected her partnership with Warner Bros. Being put under suspension, she wasn’t able to perform in several movies. When her suspension was over, she was cast in ‘’The Big Country’’ as Patricia Terrill, which received a mostly positive reaction, but wasn’t considered to be Baker’s finest work. One of her notable roles was her portrayal of Ellie Brown in a 1959 comedy film ‘’But Not for Me’’, with her acting skills critically praised and acknowledged by both critics and the audience. During mid-60s, Baker played a variety of notorious and problematic characters.
In the mid-‘70s, Carroll moved to Italy looking for new acting experiences, and went on to appear in several horror and thriller films, which gave her the opportunity to prove her skills in a different genre.
She subsequently wrote an autobiography entitled ‘’Babydoll: An Autobiography’’ in 1983.
Having returned to American movies and theatre, Baker played a wide range of characters – from naïve to bold and flamboyant ones, including Eleanor Crisp in ‘’Kindergarten Cop’’ in 1990, which was a huge success. In the following years, Baker played supporting roles in plenty movies, before eventually retiring in 2003.
In her personal life, Baker has been married three times, firstly in 1953 to Louie Ritter but which lasted less than a year. From her second marriage to Jack Garfein (1955-69), she has two children. She was thirdly married to British actor Donald Burton from 1978 until his death in 2007.
Visited USS Ticonderoga CV-14 with Bob Hope as part of his morale boosting visits for the soldiers, sailors and airmen during the Vietnam War in 1965.
Received a career Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2011 Hoboken International Film Festival.
Received the National Arts Club Medal of Honor in New York City in 2009.
She became a nightclub dancer to raise money for her tuition at the Actors Studio.
Though it may only be studio hype, in 1964 an African Masai chieftain reportedly was so fascinated by Baker that he offered 150 cows, 200 goats and sheep, and $750 for her while she was on location in Kenya for Mister Moses (1965).
While in Hollywood to test for Giant (1956), director Nicholas Ray met with her on James Dean's suggestion to discuss playing the role of Judy in Rebel Without a Cause (1955). Baker's new husband Jack Garfein insisted that she return to New York once the test was shot, and negotiations were broken off.
[on working with George Peppard in The Carpetbaggers (1964)] As I understand it, [he] later became a nice guy, a gentleman, but when we worked together back then, he was pretentious, egotistical, a brat, and an asshole--and that's just for starters! He pretended he was seven years younger than he was; he even claimed to be a bachelor and denied he was married--in front of me (I knew better), he denied their existence. The role of Jonas Cord in "The Carpetbaggers" really went to his big head. He acquired delusions of grandeur--thought he was God's gift to women and the movies! His attitude towards me was very bizarre--he acted as though we'd never met! Or that I had a husband! George asked not "if" but "when" we could be intimate together! He came to my house uninvited with an ultimatum--if I don't have an affair with him, he'll have an affair with Elizabeth Ashley! Can you believe this guy? He was totally jealous of any and all attention I received!
[on John Ford, with whom she worked on How the West Was Won (1962) and Cheyenne Autumn (1964)] I adored and admired "Pappy", and have been grateful forever to have been able to work with him-twice, the second time on "Cheyenne Autumn". Elia Kazan was, without a doubt, the best actor's director, but John Ford put "motion" in motion pictures. I learned more about the visual side of pictures from him--a very unique experience. No amount of time spent at the Actors Studio could have taught me nearly as much!
[Joseph E. Levine] behaved like he owned me. My husband thought it was all terrific as long as I kept bringing in the money. I started objecting to everything, but it was too late. The sex-symbol image had already started. I turned down parts and they blacklisted me. The press attacked me viciously at every opportunity. I came very close to suicide.
Life seems to be a never-ending series of survivals, doesn't it?
The big one I missed out on was Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958). MGM wanted me for it, and Warner Bros. wouldn't give me permission to do it.
I was very young when I saw Gone with the Wind (1939), but I fell in love with Clark Gable. And when I got to work with him, I couldn't believe it. I still had a crush on him. He was quite an old man by then; he must have seen that I was head over heels, even though I was married.
After Baby Doll (1956) I did some Westerns. I would try to do something so far away from "Baby Doll".
Bad directors are the ones who want to tell you every move, and think they're a better actor than you.
When Clark Gable kissed me, they had to carry me off the set.