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Mary-Kate Olsen was one of the Olsen twins who became child stars on the sitcom Full House. The twins have a retail product line that makes billions.
Ashley Olsen - Full House (0:55)
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen started out on "Full House" as infants and grew up on television.
Watch a short video about Ashley Olsen and her role as Michelle Tanner on "Full House."
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Mary-Kate Olsen and her twin sister, Ashley, made their acting debut at 9-months-old on the ABC sitcom Full House. By age 12, Olsen twins products were estimated to generate $1 billion in retail sales per year. Mary-Kate checked herself into rehabilitation for anorexia in 2004. The production company owned by the twins is called Dualstar.
Actress Mary-Kate Olsen was born on June 13, 1986, in Sherman Oaks, California. The daughter of mortgage banker David Olsen and manager Jarnie Olsen, Mary-Kate and her twin sister, Ashley, have become among the most popular—and bankable—female personalities in America. They made their acting debut in 1987 at 9 months old, sharing the role of the youngest daughter, Michelle Tanner, on the ABC family sitcom Full House. The series ran for eight years, during which the Olsen twins' career took off.
By the age of 12, the girls had starred in home videos, feature films, multi-media entertainment and another ABC TV series, Two of a Kind. Under the name Dualstar Entertainment, they produced several straight-to-video movies, a line of musical detective videos entitled The Adventures of Mary-Kate & Ashley, and the hugely successful You're Invited to Mary-Kate and Ashley's party tapes. They have also introduced a series of companion books to accompany the videos. In 1993, Our First Video went to the top of the Billboard video music chart, and was followed shortly by I Am The Cute One and Brother for Sale. The twins made their big screen debut in 1995 in It Takes Two.
In addition to acting, the Olsens have become a huge force in girl marketing. Products bearing their names, including computer games, dolls, and an enormously popular clothing line for Wal-Mart, are estimated to generate about $1 billion in retail sales alone per year.
Mary-Kate and Ashley announced their plans to attend New York University in the fall of 2004. Shortly after the news, Mary-Kate checked herself into a rehabilitation facility for the eating disorder, anorexia. In the wake of rumors about Mary-Kate's health, the twins released their next feature film, New York Minute.
In 2005, Mary-Kate and her sister purchased the minority shares of Dualstar, taking full control of the company. During this time, Mary-Kate also ended her relationship with Greek shipping heir Stavros Niarchos III. The break-up, combined with the changes at Dualstar, led Mary-Kate quit school and return to California to focus on business ventures with her company.
The next year, the sisters began appearing together in the Badgley Mischka ad campaign. They also made their foray into the world of high-end fashion by launching a line of their own called The Row. In 2007, they announced another line of more contemporary clothing, Elizabeth and James, which is named after their brother and sister.
In January of 2008, Mary-Kate made headlines when her close friend, actor Heath Ledger, died of a prescription drug overdose.
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Twin stars Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen made their acting debut more than two decades ago, taking turns playing Michelle on the popular TV series Full House when they were only 6 months old. The show led to a crazed film career for the sisters, who starred together in dozens of family friendly films in the 1990s and early 2000s, including It Takes Two and New York Minute. They also returned to TV in 1998, with the series Two of a Kind.
Following years of dual stardom, the Olsens have branched out in recent years, asking to be viewed individually in the media, rather than as a pair. However, they could never completely separate from each other: together, they bought out a movie production company in 2004, and co-founded two fashion lines soon after. Though no longer pursuing acting gigs, the Olsens—worth an estimated, combined $100 million—have maintained thousands of die-hard fans worldwide, who are eager to find out what the famous duo will do next.
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen 2 people in this group
Child stars are the pint-sized actors we've watched grow up on screen. These talented actors began their careers and traversed the triumphs and pitfalls of fame at an early age. While some child stars, like Sarah Jessica Parker and Natalie Portman, have continued their success into adulthood, others have been plagued by troubles following their early fame. Here's a look at some of the actors who made it big when they were kids.
Child Stars 36 people in this group
Fashion Front Row 42 people in this group