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Still frames from When In Rome by APCyberax

Some info about the twins...

Early life

Born in Sherman Oaks, California to David Olsen (b. 1953) and Jarnette (Jarnie) Fuller (b. 1954), Mary-Kate and Ashley Fuller Olsen started their acting careers on the television series Full House in 1987. They were hired at the age of six months, and filming began when they were nine months old. The show was widely popular during the late 1980s and early 1990s, and both sisters played the same character, Michelle Tanner, taking turns during the tapings to do so, in order to comply with strict child labor laws regarding child actors. For the first year, Ashley would cry when she was brought on set to do a scene, so Mary-Kate had 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 addition to Full House, such as To Grandmother's House We Go (1992).


Shortly after the end of Full House, they began heavily merchandising their image. They established a company called Dualstar in 1993 and their brand has been sold in more than 3,000 stores in America and over 5,300 stores worldwide. Because of this, they have been on the Forbes' "The Celebrity 100 list" since 2002. In 2007, Forbes ranked them, collectively, as the eleventh-richest women in entertainment, with an estimated net worth of $100 million.

Mary-Kate and Ashley were popular figures in the preteen market during the late '90s and early 2000s. Their names became a cottage industry, with their likeness seen in clothes, books, fragrances, magazines, movies and posters. There were even Mary-Kate and Ashley fashion dolls made by Mattel from 2000 - 2005. They were ranked at number three on the VH1 program 100 Greatest Child Stars.

They starred in the video series The Adventures of Mary-Kate & Ashley and You're Invited To Mary-Kate and Ashley's..., the ABC show Two of a Kind, and ABC Family's So Little Time. However, So Little Time was panned by critics and disappointed fans.

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 adult roles, but was a box office flop.


As the sisters grow older and mature in their style, there has been greater interest in their 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.

Mary-Kate and Ashley have a clothing line in Wal-Mart stores across America for girls ages 4-14 as well as a beauty line called "Mary-Kate and Ashley: Real fashion for real girls". They were 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 fashion choices, however, haven't been without controversy. Ashley Olsen was included on PETA's 2006 Worst Dressed list for wearing fur.

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."

Personal lives

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.

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[citation needed] until Mary-Kate, who had majored in photography, left the school. In 2005 she moved back to California. She decided to stay on the West Coast and pursue more individualized work with their company, Dualstar. Ashley, still in New York, remains in close contact with her sister.

In 2004, Mary-Kate 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." Mary-Kate put on about five to seven pounds immediately after her stint in rehab and pictures had shown that she may have gained more weight.

However, Star magazine has, as of January 2007, released a cover story article on Mary Kate's, once again, very low weight. They 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."

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 addition, Ashley filed a $40 million lawsuit against tabloid magazine National Enquirer for printing a headline reading "Ashley Olsen Caught In Drug Scandal," with a story accompanied by an unflattering photo of Ashley with her eyes half-closed. The lawsuit stated that the photo was clearly used to create a misimpression that Olsen was under the influence of drugs. Ashley completely denies the accusations and said that she has not and does not use or sell illegal drugs. The suit consisted of $20 million in libel damages and $20 million in false light invasion of privacy damages. Per her suit, Ashley Olsen and her lawyers believe that "freedom of the press is a valuable right, but it is not a license for gossipy tabloids to tar and feather innocent celebrities and destroy their reputations and businesses for the rag's profits."