Kate's Notes

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

MaryKate Olsen

Mary-Kate Olsen

Mary-Kate Olsen (both born June 13, 1986) is the other half of the Olson Twin empire that began with the role of Michelle Tanner on the sitcom, "Full House." Her fraternal twin sister, Ashley, was also used as the two tots playing the minor character. After their young break out role, they produced a series of straight to video kids series called The Adventures of Mary-Kate & Ashley. Since then, they have attained international fame through numerous television programs, films, interviews, as well as commercial endorsements. Until their late teens, they appeared together in order to substantiate their public persona. However, since they turned 18, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen have made an effort to not be intrinsically linked together.

Unfortunetly, through a series of tabloid frezied events, such as admitting herself to rehab for an eating disorder, and dating high profile men, Mary-Kate Olsen has often been skewered by the gossip columns, unlike her sister Ashley Olsen, who has suceeded in keeping a reletively low profile.

Early Life and Career

Mary-Kate and Ashley Fuller Olsen were born in Sherman Oaks, California to David Olsen (b. 1953) and Jarnette (Jarnie) Fuller (b. 1954). They began their acting careers on the television series “Full House” in 1987. They were hired at the tender age of six months, and began filming when they were only nine months old. They starred along side Bob Saget, John Stamos, Candace Cameron, Dave Coulier, and many others. The show was widely popular during the late 1980s and early 1990s, and both sisters played the same character, Michelle Tanner. They both took turns playing the young character in order to comply with strict child labor laws regarding child actors. For the first year, Ashley would cry every time she was brought on set to do a scene, so Mary-Kate ha d more screen time in the first season. Because the producers did not want viewers to know that Michelle was played by twins, the sisters were originally credited as "Mary Kate Ashley Olsen", but in the last season and most of season one, they were credited as separate people. During the eight year run, Mary-Kate and Ashley made several straight-to-video movies in the The Adventures of Mary-Kate & Ashley series, in addition to "Full House," such as To Grandmother's House We Go (1992).

Mary-Kate and Ashley have an older brother, Trent, and younger sister, Elizabeth, as well as two half-siblings, Taylor (b. 1996), and Jake (b. 1997). The twins' parents divorced in 1995, and Taylor and Jake are the children from their father's second marriage to Martha Mackenzie-Olsen.

Later Career

Mary-Kate Olsen has said of her and her Ashley's relationship, "We get along really well, but TV and film aren't reality. We're best friends, but we do have our fights!" Shortly after the end of Full House, they returned to the entertainment industry, riding the momentum of their role on "Full House" by heavily merchandising their image. They established a company called Dualstar in 1993 and their brand is sold in more than 3,000 stores in America and over 5,300 stores worldwide. Their likeness can be seen in clothes, fragrances, magazines, movies and posters marketed toward the preteen American. There were also Mary-Kate and Ashley fashion dolls made by Mattel from 2000-2005.

Mary-Kate and Ashley were popular figures in the preteen market during the late 1990s and early 2000s, and were compared to other such Hollywood teen stars as Judy Garland, Shirley Temple and Mickey Rooney among others. They were ranked at number three on the VH1 program 100 Greatest Child Stars.

They also starred in the ABC show "Two of a Kind", as well as ABC Family's "So Little Time." "So Little Time" was panned by critics and disappointed fans, because of the shows single camera videotaping and laugh track.

In 2004, Mary-Kate and Ashley announced that they would be attending college after graduating high school. Most child and teenage actors usually choose to pursue acting full time after graduating from high school, with few (such as Brooke Shields, Jodie Foster, Julia Stiles, and Natalie Portman) choosing to further their education. They both studied at New York University at the Gallatin School of Individualized Study; however, Mary-Kate took a break from life at New York University, where she majored in photography. Though Mary-Kate moved to Los Angeles in 2004, Ashley, still in New York, remained in close contact with her sister.

They have also been on the Forbes’ "The Celebrity 100 list" since 2002, and they became the youngest self-made millionaires in American history before they were 10 years old.

Other Work

In 1990, the Mary-Kate and Ashley books were launched, and are still a huge success today, often listed as bestsellers in USA Today. In 1995, the companion book series to their Adventures videos.

Mary-Kate and Ashley have a clothing line in Wal-Mart stores across America for little girls ages 4-14 as well as a beauty line called "Mary-Kate and Ashley: Real Fashion for Real Girls;” though when they were initially approached with the idea of a clothing line, they thought they wanted to go more upscale. However, talks with their board of directors changed their minds, and they decided to make clothes relatable with a more general buying public.

In 2004 they made news by signing a pledge to allow all the workers that sew their line of clothing in Bangladesh full maternity leave. The National Labor Committee, which organized the pledge, later praised the twins for their commitment to worker rights. The director of the organization, Charles Kernaghan is quoted as saying, "The Olsen twins have done the right thing. Now it is up to Wal-Mart to either support Mary-Kate and Ashley’s commitment to women’s rights, or tragically to shut them down."

Both Mary-Kate and Ashley have been tapped as the faces of upscale fashion line Badgley Mischka. They have also been working on a new couture label 'The Row' named after the famous Savile Row of London.

Their most recent theatrical venture was in the light-hearted romantic comedy, New York Minute, also starring Eugene Levy. The film was expected to launch the girls into more serious mature roles, but was a box office flop, and only served to hinder their adult acting careers.

Personal Life

The Olsen's have tried to make there seperation evident, as Mary-Kate Olsen has stated, ""Me and Ashley feel like we're totally different," and their seperate lives in the gossip rags have made this evident.

There has also been greater interest in their individual fashion choices. The New York Times declared Mary-Kate a fashion icon for pioneering her signature (and now popular among celebrities and fans alike) "homeless" look. The style, sometimes referred to as "ashcan" or "Boho-chic," and similar to that of Bohemian chic popularised in Britain by Kate Moss and Sienna Miller, consists of oversized sunglasses, boots, loose sweaters, and flowing skirts.

In 2004, Mary-Kate Olsen checked into rehab for six weeks because she was suffering from the eating disorder anorexia nervosa. It was rumoured that there was also a drug problem, but the Olsens' publicist said, "Mary-Kate was not admitted for drugs. Period." Olsen put on about five to seven pounds immediately after her stint in rehab and pictures had shown that she may have gained more weight; on her lithe 5 foot 2 frame, the weight gain was noticable, and she appeared healthy.

Mary-Kate in 2005 ended her romance with Greek shipping heir Stavros Niarchos III; Niarchos then began dating hotel heiress and socialite Paris Hilton. Mary-Kate said that the breakup was one of the main factors in her leave of absence from New York University. "I miss him and I love him," Mary-Kate said, "It's a hurtful and a painful subject." When asked if there was a specific reason for her leaving NYU, she replied, "I think we can all guess."

The breakup and Niarchos's pairing with Paris Hilton led to a rift between Hilton and Mary-Kate. "[Paris and I] always only had nice things to say about each other," Olsen said. "Now I guess you can tell we're not talking."

In October of 2006, Mary-Kate Olsen was reportedly dating oil heir Maxwell Snow. Snow happens to be Uma Thurman's nephew and was Mary-Kate's first boyfriend since being single for a year after Paris Hilton stole her last boyfriend Stavros Niarchos.

Even after Mary-Kate Olsen received treatment for anorexica back in 2004, and her reps are claiming that she’s been seeing a coach to help her with eating issues, at a Golden Globes party in January of 2007, Mary-Kate got tongues wagging when she showed off her skinny bone jones frame in a low-cut gown. Though her rep has slammed reports that she’s relapsed back into anorexia, according to her rep, she hasn’t lost weight and is continuing treatment with the help of a therapist. A friend of Mary-Kate Olsen blames the fact that she died her hair blond and that it makes her look thinner.

However, Star magazine has, as of January 2007, released a cover story article on Mary Kate's, once again, very low weight. T hey claim she is at 80 pounds. She has been seen wearing baggy clothes and carrying vast purses. Her spokesperson has denied the weight loss claiming "Mary-Kate has not lost weight. She is taking good care of herself."


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12:36 PM  

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