Why Steve Martin Retired (And The Reason He’s Back)

Why Steve Martin Retired (And The Reason He’s Back)

Around 2009 Steve Martin retired, but he’s returned for Only Murders in the Building alongside Martin Short and Selena Gomez. Here’s why.

Over a decade after he retired, Steve Martin has returned in full swing with Only Murders in the Building. The new comedy mystery series is based on the idea of a true-crime podcast, and is co-written by Martin and John Hoffman, with the former taking one of the three lead roles. So why did Steve Martin retire, and why did he come back now?

Steve Martin led an extensive acting career before retiring, which started in the late 1970s and flourished through the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s. While he specialized in farcical comedies such as The Man with Two Brains (1983), Bowfinger (1999), and The Pink Panther (2006), and multiple comedies with Martin Short, including Three Amigos! and Father of the Bride, he also appeared in occasional more serious roles as with his character in David Mamet’s The Spanish Prisoner. While he demonstrated versatility and had incredible success, after the release of It’s Complicated and The Pink Panther 2 in 2009, Steve Martin largely disappeared from TV and film with a couple of exceptions for smaller roles, as with his character in Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. Steve Martin returned post-retirement for his new show Only Murders in the Building, with season 2 just around the corner.


Related: Bowfinger True Story Explained: How Much Is Real?

Only Murders in the Building season 1 premiered on Hulu on August 31st, 2021, and saw Steve Martin return from his retirement. The show was an instant hit for the streaming service, with Steve Martin acting alongside Martin Short and Selena Gomez. Gomez seems like an odd matchup for the trio, but the group works well together as they try to solve the case. With all of the excitement surrounding the series, people are eager for Only Murders in the Building season 2, and to see Steve Martin on the screen again. Here’s why Steve Martin retired, and everything we know about Only Murders in the Building season 2.

Steve Martin Wanted To Focus On Music And His Child

Steve Martin Only Murders In The Building

Steve Martin’s departure from acting happened, in its simplest form, because he wanted to work on other things. He focused on his music career in the intervening years after the banjo player Earl Scruggs asked Martin to play on an album with him. This gave him a doorway into a bluegrass music career that led to him receiving multiple Grammy awards for his work as a musical artist. Additionally, during this time, he and his wife Anne Stringfield welcomed a child, and Steve Martin has said that he was glad his firstborn came at a time in his life when he could focus more on being a parent rather than on his career.

Steve Martin Wrote Only Murders In The Building Thanks To A Party

Steve Martin’s post-retirement return to acting alongside Martin Short, seems to have come from a serendipitous suggestion combined with an unexpected desire to be back in the acting life. Speaking to AARP, Martin says that he was at a party with several other actors over 70 when a producer told him he should write something for them to be in, which sparked the idea behind Only Murders in the Building. As he plotted his series about older people investigating crimes, he says that he had a realization: “Wait, I’m old – I could be in it,” and with that, Steve Martin came out of retirement.

Steve Martin Is The Comeback King

Steve Martin and Martin Short in Only Murders in the Building

Interestingly enough, acting is not the first career in which he had seen considerable success then lost interest and departed. In the late 1960s, Martin started working in standup comedy, and by the early 1980s he was selling out full-sized stadiums for his shows. Then, at the peak of his career, he said that he felt like he had come to the end of the road and stopped performing at live shows.

Related: Only Murders In The Building Hints At A Third Killer (But Who Is It?)

He returned to stand-up comedy in 2016 and, as with his return to acting in Only Murders in the Building, did so alongside Martin Short, leading to their Netflix comedy special Steve Martin and Martin Short: An Evening you Will Forget for the Rest of Your Life. Steve Martin has been a stand-up comic, an actor, an author, and a bluegrass musician. The star and writer of Only Murders in the Building might be many things, but he’ll never be someone who continues doing something familiar or expected at the expense of his own self-amusement.

What We Know About Murders In The Building Season 2

Only Murders In The Building poster with coiorful blocks and characters

As for the release date, people don’t have to wait long — Only Murders in the Building season 2 should premiere on Hulu for the US, and Disney+ for the UK, on June 28th, 2022. The Steve Martin show was so successful, in fact, that Hulu promised a second installment shortly after season 1 was released on the streaming service. Only Murders in the Building season 2 will focus on finding Bunny’s killer. A major problem arises when many believe that the trio is responsible for Bunny’s passing, and the three of them will have to prove their innocence. Steve Martin’s retirement is officially over, as he will be reprising his role on the show, along with Martin Short and Selena Gomez.

Next: Who Killed [SPOILER]? Every Only Murders In The Building Season 2 Theory

Samwise in LOTR Return of the King

Sean Astin Gives Lord of the Rings TV Show His Blessing

About The Author

Faefyx Collington
(497 Articles Published)

Faefyx Collington (They/Them) is a features editor and writer for Screen Rant. Faefyx writes both fiction and non-fiction, focussing on science fiction, fantasy, and mystery for the former and on culture, gender, and current affairs for the latter.
Faefyx is also a co-host for the podcast “Unramblings,” and can occasionally be found making music as well.
Having acquired degrees on both sides of the Atlantic, Fyx has settled (for the moment) in the southern United States where they live with their spouse and an entirely appropriate number of cats.

More From Faefyx Collington

Author: Deann Hawkins