Mandy Moore Is an American singer, songwriter, actress and voice actress. She rose to fame with her debut single, “Candy”
Mandy Moore (born April 10, 1984) is an American singer, songwriter, actress and voice actress. She rose to fame with her debut single, “Candy“, which peaked at number 41 on the Billboard Hot 100. Her debut studio album, So Real (1999), received a platinum certification from the RIAA. The title single from her second studio album, I Wanna Be With You (2000), became Moore’s first top 30 song in the U.S., peaking at number 24 on the Hot 100. Moore subsequently released the studio albums Mandy Moore (2001), Coverage (2003), Wild Hope (2007), Amanda Leigh (2009) and Silver Landings (2020).
Moore made her feature film debut in 2001, with a minor voice role in the comedy film Dr. Dolittle 2, before starring as Lana Thomas in the comedy film The Princess Diaries. She received recognition for her starring role as Jamie Sullivan in the romantic drama film A Walk to Remember (2002), and starred in the films Chasing Liberty (2004), Saved! (2004), Racing Stripes (2005), Because I Said So (2007), License to Wed (2007), Love, Wedding, Marriage (2011), 47 Meters Down (2017), The Darkest Minds (2018), and Midway (2019). Moore also voiced Princess Rapunzel in the Disney animated fantasy musical comedy film Tangled (2010), the short film Tangled Ever After (2012), the Disney Channel television film, Tangled: Before Ever After (2017), and the series Tangled: The Series (2017–2020).
Since 2016, Moore has starred as Rebecca Pearson in the NBC family drama series This Is Us. For her performance, she was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress and the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, and won two Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series. In 2019, Moore was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Moore was born on April 10, 1984, in Nashua, New Hampshire, to Stacy (née Friedman), a former news reporter who once worked for the Orlando Sentinel, and Donald Moore, a pilot for American Airlines. Moore was raised Catholic, but has since developed a “hodgepodge of things” that she believes. Moore is of Russian-Jewish (from her maternal grandfather), English, Scottish and Irish descent. She has an older brother, Scott, and a younger brother, Kyle. When Moore was two months old, she and her family moved to Longwood, Florida, outside of Orlando, because of her father’s job; there she met her longtime boyfriend David Stater. She went to Bishop Moore Catholic High School in Orlando from 1998 to 1999.
1993–1998: Career beginnings
Moore became interested in singing and acting at a young age, and called her British maternal grandmother, Eileen Friedman, a professional ballerina in London, one of her inspirations. Moore said “My parents thought It was just a phase I’d grow out of. But I stuck to it and begged them for acting lessons, for voice lessons.”
Moore began starring in a number of local productions, and performing the National Anthem at a number of events in Orlando. She was only twelve years old when she went to the Stagedoor Manor performing arts camp, where other celebrities including actress Natalie Portman had attended. Production director Konnie Kittrell said about Moore “She was a quiet, sweet girl”, and said that she earned a number of solos, but “She wasn’t a spotlight seeker.”
When Moore was thirteen, she began working on music by herself. One day, while working in an Orlando studio, she was overheard by Victor Cade, a FedEx delivery man who had a friend in A&R at Epic Records. Cade later sent this friend a copy of Moore’s unfinished demo, and Moore signed on with the label.
1998–2000: So Real and I Wanna Be with You
After signing with Epic Records, Moore began working on her debut album. While recording the album, Moore had to leave Bishop Moore Catholic High School when she was only in the ninth-grade, but continued receiving her education from tutors. In the summer of 1999, Moore began touring with the boy band NSYNC. Later that year, Moore also toured with the boy band Backstreet Boys.
Moore’s debut single, “Candy“, was released on August 17, 1999, in the U.S. The single was a commercial success in a number of countries, but was compared immediately to the teen pop singers Christina Aguilera, Jessica Simpson, and Britney Spears. It debuted at number 88 on the Billboard Hot 100, before peaking at number 41 on the chart. The single later received a Gold certification from the RIAA, for sales exceeding 500,000 copies in the U.S. The single was the most successful in Australia, where it peaked at number 2 on the ARIA Charts and received a Platinum certification.
Moore’s debut studio album, So Real, was released on December 7, 1999, by 550 Music through Epic Records. The album received a limited release in only a few countries. It received generally mixed reviews from critics when it was released, and Moore continued to be compared to other teen pop singers. Allmusic said about the album, “Fifteen-year-old Mandy Moore’s debut album sounded like it was inspired almost entirely by listening to recent hit albums by ‘N Sync, the Backstreet Boys, and Britney Spears.” Entertainment Weekly had a similar opinion about the album, and gave it a C- in their review.
The album debuted at number 77 on the Billboard 200 chart. The album eventually continued to climb the chart until it peaked at number 31. It later received a Platinum certification from the RIAA, for sales exceeding one million copies in the U.S. alone. The album’s second single, “Walk Me Home“, was released on the same day as the album. The single did not have the same success of its predecessor, failing to appear on any major charts, but it peaked at number 38 on the Billboard Pop Songs chart in the U.S. The third and final title single, “So Real“, was released exclusively in certain territories on June 13, 2000. The single was not released in the U.S., but was released in territories such as Japan. In Australia, the single became her second Top 40 hit, peaking at number 21 on the ARIA Charts. The single also peaked at number 18 on the Official New Zealand Music Chart.
Before promotion for So Real had even ended, Moore had already begun working on her second album. The album’s title single, “I Wanna Be with You“, was released on July 11, 2000. The song became her first single to chart on the Billboard Hot 100 since her debut single, “Candy”. “I Wanna Be with You” spent 16 weeks on the chart and reached its peak of 24 during its ninth week on the chart. The song became her first Top 20 hit on the Billboard Pop Songs chart, where it peaked at number 11. The single also became Moore’s second Top 20 hit in Australia, where it peaked at number 13. It was also a minor success on the German Media Control Charts, where it peaked at number 70. The single received mixed to positive reviews. Billboard praised the song and said, “Top 40 programmers and listeners alike will love Moore more with this track”, but Allmusic called the song a highlight track from the album.
Moore’s second studio album, I Wanna Be with You, was released on May 9, 2000. The album had the lead title single and songs from Moore’s debut album So Real. I Wanna Be with You was released as Moore’s debut album in a number of countries. The album received generally mixed reviews and criticism because it was a remix album and not a true follow-up. Allmusic called the album “trashier, flashier, gaudier, and altogether more disposable” than its predecessor So Real. The album was a commercial success, debuting and peaking at number 21 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart. It later received a Gold certification from the RIAA, for sales exceeding 500,000 copies in the U.S. alone. Moore won the Kids’ Choice Awards for Favorite Rising Star for the album in 2000.
2001–2002: Mandy Moore and foray into acting
In 2001, Moore began working on her third studio album, which was said to move away from the “bubblegum pop” sound and image she became known for. Moore said during an interview with Billboard magazine that “All of the music has started to look and sound the same” and that she chose to move in a different musical direction. Moore also said that she wanted “no more dancers, no more singing to tracks. I got tired of that in a big way”.
The album’s lead single, “In My Pocket“, was released on May 29, 2001. Entertainment Weekly said the single had “pumping, Indian-influenced Eurodisco“. It failed to chart on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S., but peaked at number 2 on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart, and it reached number 21 on the Billboard Pop Songs chart. The song became her third Top 20 hit in Australia, where it peaked at number 11 on the ARIA Charts.
Moore’s self-titled third studio album, Mandy Moore, was released on June 19, 2001. The album had uptempo dance and pop songs and influences from Middle Eastern music. The album received mixed to average reviews from critics. Allmusic called the album a “lush, layered production”. The album debuted and peaked at number 35 on the Billboard 200 chart, and later received a Gold certification from the RIAA. The album has sold an estimated 1.5 million copies worldwide. The album also reached number 37 on the ARIA charts in Australia, her highest peak in the country to date. The album’s second single, “Crush“, was released on August 28, 2001; it peaked at number 35 on the Billboard Pop Songs chart, and it climbed to number 25 on the ARIA Charts.
Moore made her feature film debut in 2001, where she voiced a Girl Bear Cub in the comedy Dr. Dolittle 2, which starred Eddie Murphy. Later that year, Moore co-starred with Anne Hathaway in the comedy The Princess Diaries, based on Meg Cabot‘s novel of the same name, and was released on August 3, 2001. She played Lana Thomas, the rival of Mia Thermopolis (Hathaway). On her role, Moore told InStyle Magazine, “I’m the crude popular girl who gets ice cream in her face.” The film opened in 2,537 theaters in North America and grossed $22,862,269 in its opening weekend. It grossed $165,335,153 worldwide—$108,248,956 in North America and $57,086,197 in other territories. The film received mixed to positive reviews. Rotten Tomatoes reported that 47% of 113 sampled critics gave the film positive reviews and that it got a rating average of 5.2 out of 10. In the film, Moore performed a cover of Connie Francis‘s 1958 song “Stupid Cupid” while at a beach party.
In 2002, Moore made her starring debut with Shane West and Peter Coyote in the romantic drama A Walk to Remember, based on Nicholas Sparks‘s novel of the same name. She played Jamie Sullivan, the unpopular daughter of Reverend Sullivan (Coyote). The film opened at #3 at the U.S. box office raking in $12,177,488 in its opening weekend, behind Snow Dogs and Black Hawk Down. The film received generally negative reviews, but Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times praised Moore and West’s “quietly convincing” performances. It was a modest box office hit, earning $41,281,092 in the U.S. alone, and was a sleeper hit in Asia. The total revenue generated worldwide was $47,494,916. Moore received a number of nominations and awards for her performance in the film.
Moore’s self-titled album’s third and final single, “Cry,” was released on November 4, 2001, to help promote the film. Commenting on the film, she said: “It was my first movie and I know people say it may be cliche and it’s a tearjerker or it’s cheesy, but for me, it’s the thing I’m most proud of.”