The US made mince out of me, says Aussie actress Rachel Griffiths
Matthew Goode and Rachel Griffiths in a scene from Burning Man. Picture: Angie Fielder Source: News Limited
AFTER a decade as one of Australia's top earners in Hollywood, Rachel Griffiths says she's slowing things down.
The A-lister will relocate back to Sydney in January with her husband and three kids, ready to take a break after 10 years of consistent work on primetime TV in the US – a rarity in the acting business.
"I'm going to stop and enjoy the roses for a little bit," the 42-year-old actress tells Insider from New York.
"Most importantly I just don't want to do a big TV contract for a while. I've had 10 years of very well paid contracts but you are basically a serf, you have no freedom and there's a kind of cost to it."
Griffiths won critical acclaim on the hugely popular Six Feet Under, from 2001 for five years before she took on the role of Sarah Walker in Brothers & Sisters, alongside Sally Field, Rob Lowe and Calista Flockhart.
She's understood to have been paid more than $150,000 an episode over the six seasons, which wrapped earlier this year.
But having worked on US TV for so many years, Griffith relished the opportunity to take her time working on the new Australian film, Burning Man.
"Having done television at the rate and frequency and volume that I was, to do something that was such a precious story to somebody … I knew that would remind me of what else this job can be because it did start to feel towards the end like I was mince meat going through the sausage machine of network television," she says.
Directed by Jonathan Teplitzky, Burning Man stars Matthew Goode as a young chef, whose life is out of control.
Griffith went nude in a number of scenes of the film shot in Sydney this year. "I do it very rarely but I really trusted Jonathan," she says.
Griffith, married to artist Andrew Taylor, is mother to Banjo, 7, Adelaide, 6, and Clementine, 2.
She moved to America off the back of 1994 Australian film Muriel's Wedding and hasn't looked back, until now.
She's looking forward to setting up home in Sydney as living overseas has been isolating.
"I don't really have any friends here to be honest. I have a tragic life," she says.
"I work my arse off and then I am with my kids, that's about my life. We don't have family here.
"Raising three kids on the other side of the world with no family, the only people you can rely on are on the payroll and even then you can't rely on them because they are on the payroll if you know what I mean," she says.
Burning Man opens Thursday