Mandy Moore (born Amanda Leigh Moore on April 10, 1984) is
an American singer and actress. Moore grew up in Florida and came
to fame as a teenager in 2000, after the release of So Real, her
first album. Her subsequent albums, including the self-titled Mandy
Moore and Coverage, established her as a well-known pop singer in
the United States. Moore has also branched out into a film career,
starring in 2002's successful teen film, A Walk to Remember, and
later appearing in the lead roles of less well-received movies aimed
at teenage audiences. Two of her latest films, the parodies American
Dreamz and Saved!, were considered by some critics to be a change
of pace into darker roles.
Moore's private life has been much-discussed in the media, including
her previous relationships to actor Wilmer Valderrama and tennis
player Andy Roddick. Moore, who is currently dating actor Zach Braff,
is scheduled to appear in several films over the course of 2006
and 2007, while her music career is on hold, having parted ways
with her record company.
Moore was born in Nashua, New Hampshire to Don Moore (a pilot for
American Airlines) and Stacy (a former newspaper reporter). Moore
has Irish and Cherokee heritage on her father's side. Her maternal
grandfather was Jewish and her English maternal grandmother was
a professional dancer at the theater district in the West End of
London, as well as a Wren during WWII; the two met and eloped to
the United States after Moore's maternal grandfather, an American
soldier, was stationed in London during WWII.
Moore has two brothers, Scott and Kyle; she grew up in Seminole
County, Florida, outside of Orlando, moving there shortly after
her birth because of her father's job. Moore was raised in the Catholic
religion (although she is no longer a practicing Catholic), and
attended Park Maitland School (for elementary school) in Maitland,
Florida, Bishop Moore Catholic High School and Lake Brantley High
School in Altamonte Springs.
Moore's interest in singing grew after seeing the musical Oklahoma!;
she was also encouraged to perform by her maternal grandmother,
who was her inspiration. Moore subsequently sang the National Anthem
at a few athletic events, and was spotted by a FedEx employee, who
sent her demo to Epic Records; She was signed with the record company
at the age of fourteen and toured with The Backstreet Boys throughout
1999-2002: Early pop albums
Moore, fifteen years-old at the time, released her first album,
So Real, on December 7, 1999. The album reached a peak of #31 on
the U.S. Billboard 200 album chart. At the time of her album's release,
Moore was considered by critics to be only the latest in a quickly-growing
series of heavily-marketed 'pop princesses' akin to Britney Spears,
Christina Aguilera and Jessica Simpson. Moore was the last (and
youngest) of the four to reach mainstream radio, and was initially
not as successful as her peers. Still, So Real was certified platinum
in the US by early 2000 and sold 943,000 copies; Her debut single,
"Candy," peaked at #41 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and
was certified gold. A follow-up single, "Walk Me Home,"
was also released, but to less success. Moore also released the
title track, "So Real," outside the States.
Moore released a re-worked version of her debut album entitled
I Wanna Be With You on May 9, 2000, six months after So Real's release.
The album included several new songs, along with tracks from So
Real, as well as a couple of remixed songs. Some reviewers criticized
it as a remix album and not a true followup. The album reached a
peak of #21 on the Billboard 200; it was later certified gold in
the US and sold 792,000 copies. The title track was the only single
and reached a peak of #17 on the Hot 100, Moore's highest peak to
date. The song was also featured in the film Center Stage (2000).
Moore released the self-titled album Mandy Moore on June 19, 2001.
The album received mixed reviews and debuted at a low #35 on the
Billboard 200. It was later certified gold in the US and sold 443,000
copies. The album's main producer was Tim Mitchell. The lead single,
"In My Pocket", was tinged with a Middle-Eastern sound,
along with a colorful video; it failed to make a dent in the charts,
however, missing the Hot 100 completely. The song was a popular
dance success not only in the States but also a commercial hit in
Australia, Thailand, and other countries. Moore performed "In
My Pocket" live many times, including once at the 2001 Fox
network television special, "Teenapalooza".
The follow-up single, "Crush", also failed to chart,
although the music video received considerable airtime on MTV. It
went on to be Moore's first number one video on TRL, where she also
performed the song live. The final single, "Cry", was
released in early 2002 and tied-in with the film A Walk to Remember,
which was Moore's debut as a lead actress. It also failed to perform
well on the charts. The album sold well in Eastern Asia, however,
and the songs "17" and "Saturate Me" were both
released as singles overseas.
Moore looks back at her old pop days with ill feelings, saying
that although her first album was appropriate for her age and music
tastes at the time, it "sucked" and that "If I had
the money, I would give a refund to everyone who bought my first
two albums"; during a radio show interview in April 2006, she
was asked for a refund on the first album by the show's co-host,
a request that she immediately fulfilled. Moore has since also described
her early albums as "just awful".
2003-2005: Coverage and compilation albums
On October 21, 2003, Moore released her fourth album, Coverage. The
record consisted entirely of cover songs from the 1970s and '80s that
Moore was influenced by as a child, as well as songs that she had
recently discovered. The album peaked at #14 on the Billboard 200
(her highest ranking to date), but "Have a Little Faith in Me"
(the only released single) failed to perform well on the charts. A
video was made for the song "Drop the Pilot", though it
was not released as a single in the US. Her cover of "I Feel
The Earth Move" also appeared on Love Rocks, a compilation CD
of songs from gay rights supporters.
Due to disappointing sales for Coverage, Moore was dropped from
Sony's Epic Records. As a last obligation to Moore's contract, Sony
released The Best of Mandy Moore on November 16, 2004, which included
all of Moore's biggest hits from the past five years. The album
reached #148 on the Billboard 200.
Another compilation album, Candy was released around the time Moore
began working on her 2006 album. It was released with no promotion
and never appeared on the charts. This was the final release of
Moore's music from Epic Records. To date, Moore has sold more than
6 million albums worldwide.
2006: Slummin' In Paradise
A new studio album from Moore was supposed to be released by the
end of 2006 through Warner's Sire Records. According to "Instyle
Magazine" (2/06), the title of the album is Slummin' In Paradise;
one of the tracks is called "Terminal Procrastination".
The album was co-written by singers Michelle Branch, Rachael Yamagata,
and Lori McKenna. Moore has stated that she misses her music career,
and that singing is what she is the "most passionate about".
Moore recently announced via her MySpace blog that she and Sire
Records had "amicably parted ways", citing varying opinions
between her and the company regarding her musical direction.
Television and film career
Between 2000 and 2001, Moore hosted a talk show, the Mandy Moore
Show, on MTV. She performed a remix to her song "So Real"
on that show to further promote I Wanna Be With You. Moore was a
Neutrogena spokesperson, appearing in commercials as well as print
ads for the product. She has also modelled for Coach handbags in
Japan, as well as for the clothing brand Penshoppe in the Philippines,
and was a spokesperson for the School and Youth Programs of The
Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
In 2001, Moore appeared in a small part as the mean and popular
cheerleader Lana Thomas opposite actresses Anne Hathaway and Julie
Andrews in the film The Princess Diaries. In the movie, Moore's
character performs a song from the film's soundtrack, "Stupid
In 2002, Moore had her first starring role in a major feature film
in A Walk to Remember, opposite actor Shane West. The movie, based
on the novel by Nicholas Sparks, revolves around the developing
romance between a Protestant minister's daughter (played by Moore)
and an unruly teenager. The film was considered a moderate success,
bringing in $41 million and establishing Moore's status as a lead
The soundtrack for the film featured four songs by Moore ("Cry",
"Someday We'll Know", "It's Gonna Be Love" and
"Only Hope"). Moore won an award for Breakthrough Female
Performance at that summer's MTV Movie Awards, as well as Choice
Female Breakout Performance and Choice Chemistry (with Shane West)
at the Teen Choice Awards. In 2002, she also voiced the Final Fantasy
VII character Aerith Gainsborough in the Square Enix-Disney crossover
video game Kingdom Hearts. She didn't, however, reprise the role
for the sequel.
In March 2002, Moore was featured in Elton John's video for "Original
Sin". That year, she was also ranked #67 in Stuff magazine's
"102 Sexiest Women In The World."
In 2003, Moore starred in the romantic comedy film How to Deal.
The movie failed to draw in the teenage crowds in the US and grossed
a total of $14 million. Moore's next film was 2004's Chasing Liberty,
a romantic comedy which only grossed $12 million. Later that summer,
she appeared in a lead role in the low-budget satire on religion,
Saved!, playing Hilary Faye, a proper and popular girl at a Christian
school. The film, which did not receive a wide release, was positively
reviewed. Moore received praise for her performance, with one critic
commenting that she was a "demented delight", and another
saying that it was her best performance to date. In 2005, Moore
lent her voice to the movie Racing Stripes.
Moore has also appeared on the television series, Entourage, and
guest-starred in two episodes of boyfriend Zach Braff's comedy Scrubs
in 2006. She also lent her voice to The Simpsons, playing a dominatrix
named "Tabitha Vixx". The episode aired on May 21, 2006.
Moore's most recent film, which opened on April 21, 2006, is the
parody American Dreamz, in which she plays a deranged contestant
on a television series modelled after American Idol. The film's
director, Paul Weitz, had Moore in mind for the role even before
she was cast, saying that "There's something inherently sweet
about Mandy; it makes it all the more interesting to see her in
a villainess role"; Moore has said that she enjoys playing
villainous roles, but fears being typecast as a villain. American
Dreamz opened in 1,500 theatres and grossed $ 3,667,420 during its
opening weekend, reaching the #9 spot at the United States box office.
Moore, citing her conservative upbringing, has expressed dissatisfaction
with her appearance on a May 2006 cover of Cosmopolitan, as the
magazine's headline is "orgasms unlimited", referring
to an article unrelated to Moore. Moore maintains a loyal male fan
base; Maxim magazine named her #28 in their May 2006 Hot 100 issue.
Moore's upcoming films include Southland Tales and Dedication,
which are currently slated for a 2006 release, and Because I Said
So, which will be released on February 2, 2007, co-starring Piper
Perabo and Diane Keaton. She was also originally supposed to appear
in the upcoming ensemble film Bobby, but was replaced by actress
Mary Elizabeth Winstead. In May 2006, Moore began filming a romantic
comedy entitled License to Wed, in which she portrays a young bride
who has to complete a two-week prenup course before her wedding.
The film, co-starring John Krasinski as her fiance and Robin Williams
as a minister, is being filmed in Mexico and Los Angeles.
Moore dated actor Wilmer Valderrama for eighteen months between
2000 and 2002; in 2006, Valderrama appeared on the Howard Stern
Show and claimed that he and Moore were each other's "first
loves," although he did not claim that their relationship was
sexual as was alleged by several media sources who had misquoted
his exact comments. Moore has since referred to Valderrama as a
"good guy" and a "gentleman", although she has
also stated that his comments about their relationship were "utterly
tacky". In 2002, Moore started dating tennis star Andy Roddick.
The couple were together for sixteen months, hardly spending time
together due to Moore's film schedule; Roddick ended the relationship
in March of 2004. She also dated Philippines-born singer/actor Billy
Crawford for a "few months" when she was younger. Moore
is still in contact with both Roddick and Valderrama.
In 2004, Moore began dating Scrubs actor Zach Braff. The two met
at a fundraising event for the Democratic Party around the time
of the November 2004 election. Referring to her relationship with
Braff, Moore has said that she likes "good Jewish boy(s)...
with a sense of humor". In early 2006, unnamed sources told
In Touch magazine that the couple were engaged. Braff called this
a "total internet rumor," and Moore's representative denied
the engagement. In early June of 2006, tabloids reported unconfirmed
rumors that Braff and Moore had ended their relationship; however,
around the same time period, the couple were announced to have arranged
a week-long trip to Israel together, scheduled for July of 2006.
Moore's favorite musicians are Elton John, Janet Jackson, and Bette
Midler; Midler is also Moore's favorite actress, and her film Beaches
was Moore's favorite film when she was a teenager. Moore, who describes
herself as a "glass-half-full kind of person", also enjoys
Annie Hall and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. She is friends
with the Osbourne family and in 2003 frequently appeared in episodes
of their MTV reality show The Osbournes.
Moore's natural and preferred hair color is dark brown. She currently
lives in her Hollywood Hills house, along with her brother, Kyle.
Moore considers herself spiritual, and has said that she does not
think of herself as distinctly Catholic nor Christian.
2007: License to Wed
2007: Because I Said So
2006: Southland Tales
2006: Romance & Cigarettes
2006: Brother Bear 2
2006: American Dreamz
2005: Racing Stripes
2004: Chasing Liberty
2003: Try Seventeen or All I Want
2003: How to Deal
2002: A Walk to Remember
2001: The Princess Diaries
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