Stella Baker on her New The CW Series and the items she Splurged on For Summer

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“I’m talking about all my embarrassing splurges!”
Stella Baker has been treating herself this summer, and rightfully so. She has plenty to celebrate thus far in 2021. After a breakout performance in the Amazon Prime thriller Tell Me Your Secrets earlier this year—which, I should add, she booked three weeks out of grad school—Baker is back in the spotlight this month with a starring role in the new The CW series The Republic of Sarah. So yes, I would say those covetable Chanel sunglasses she admits she spent far too much money on are well deserved indeed.
Baker has been working pretty much nonstop since graduating from the Yale School of Drama in 2018, but becoming an actor wasn’t always the plan for the 27-year-old. In fact, she spent most of her young adult life avoiding an on-screen career. Growing up under two acting parents (Simon Baker and Rebecca Rigg, that is), the harsh nature of the industry was made abundantly clear. “The messaging was very much ‘Education first and then acting later, if that’s something you want,’” she says of the tough-love narrative at home. So she wasn’t much interested in Hollywood, instead setting her sights on becoming a writer. Three years into a philosophy degree, however, the inevitable happened: Her passion for performance came to the forefront. One play and some positive reinforcement from her peers is all it took for Baker to shift gears.
Right out of the gate, her talent caught the eye of casting agents, landing her an exciting part opposite Lily Rabe in Tell Me Your Secrets. Not long after that, she was cast in the title role of The Republic of Sarah, which premiered on June 14. A rarity these days, the show is a completely original story following Baker’s protagonist Sarah Cooper as she leads her small town to independence. The stakes are high for Sarah, who must navigate the challenges of building a country from scratch while satisfying the diverse needs of her community. For Baker, the opportunity to be a part of creating a new world while building a character who is incredibly smart and driven—but flawed, too—was a dream.
Ahead of the show’s debut, I jumped on a Zoom call with the rising actress to discuss the joys of playing Sarah Cooper and, yes, those recent fashion and beauty splurges.

PHOTO: 
MARIE + LEE; STYLING: OSCAR DE LA RENTA JACKET

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