Some 1990s pop divas faded into obscurity the moment the clock struck 2000. Others stuck around. Those that did fall into two categories. Some are still peddling the same song and dance routines they were in their heyday; others have diversified. Mandy Moore falls into the second camp. Once known for sugar-sweet hits like 'Candy' and 'Wanna Be With You,' Moore is now best known for her acting skills. Her performance as Rebecca Pearson in the NBC family drama series 'This Is Us' has earned her two Screen Actors Guild Awards, a Golden Globe nomination, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. It's also made her extremely wealthy. Just how wealthy might come as a surprise.
How Much is Mandy Moore Worth?
Mandy Moore burst onto the scene in the late 1990s with the single 'Candy.' Although she never reached the same heights of pop success as some of her contemporaries, her second-life as an actress has pushed her ahead of the game. While her fortune isn't quite in the same league as other 90's pop stars like Britney Spears or Christina Aguilera (who are now worth $115 million and $160 million respectively), it's still significant enough. While we obviously don't have access to her financial records, if the sources over at Celebrity Net Worth are to be believed, the actress is now worth the very respectable sum of $14 million. How did she make it? To find out, we'll need to go back in time to the early 1990s.
Back to the Start
As a kid, Moore already had a very clear idea of what she wanted to be when she grew up. Her parents thought her dreams of being an entertainer were a phase: she thought differently. After convincing them to let her take acting and voice lessons, she started appearing in local productions. At the age of 12, she won a place at the legendary Stagedoor Manor performing arts camp. A year later, she started working on making her own music. One day, a FedEx delivery driver happened to be passing by the studio she was recording in: impressed by what he heard, he asked her for a copy of her demo to send on to his friend at Epic Records. The friend was as impressed as the driver, and promptly signed Moore on with the label.
After signing with Epic Records, Moore began working on her debut album. At the same time, she was signed to tour with two of the biggest boy bands of the day, Backstreet Boys and N'SYNC. In August 1999, she released her debut single 'Candy.' It was a hit, peaking at number 41 on the Billboard Hot 100 and reaching number 2 on the Australian ARIA Charts. But despite the single certifying gold in the US and platinum in Australia, Moore had a problem. The teen segment was already at saturation point. Jessica Simpson, Britney Spears, and Christina Aguilera were established names doing much the same thing as Moore. Inevitably, comparisons were made, and deservedly or not, Moore drew the short straw. Her debut album, 'So Real', received a limited release on December 7, 1999. Described by AllMusic as sounding "like it was inspired almost entirely by listening to recent hit albums by 'N Sync, the Backstreet Boys, and Britney Spears," the album debuted at a disappointing number 77 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Her subsequent albums proved more successful, but they never quite lived up to the precedent already set by Spears et al. Her second studio album, ' I Wanna Be with You,' peaked at No. 21 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and earned Moore a Kids' Choice Awards for Favorite Rising Star. Her third studio album, 'Mandy Moore,' peaked at number 35 on the No. Billboard 200 chart. In 2003, Moore released her fourth studio album, 'Coverage,' to mixed reviews. Its lead single, a cover of John Hiatt's 1987 song, 'Have a Little Faith in Me,' became the first of her singles not to chart. The album itself performed better, peaking at number 14 on the Billboard 200 chart. However, despite being her highest-charting album to date, it also sold fewer units than all of her previous efforts. The following year, Moore left Epic Records citing 'creative differences.' For other artists, losing a record deal could have signaled the death knell. But by then, Moore already had another string to her bow.
The Move to Acting
Moore's first flirtation with the big screen came in 2001, when she provided the voice of a bear cub in 'Dr. Dolittle 2.' The following year, she co-starred alongside Anne Hathaway in 'The Princess Diaries.' The film was a commercial success, grossing $22,862,269 at the US box office during its opening weekend and grossing $165,335,153 worldwide. That same year, she starred alongside Shane West in 'A Walk to Remember.' Despite tanking with the critics, the film proved moderately successful at the box office, generating $47,494,916 worldwide. It also bought in a slew of awards for Moore. Since those early days, Moore's film career has gone from strength to strength, far exceeding her previous accomplishments in the pop arena. After a string of movie successes, Moore was cast in the family comedy-drama 'This Is Us' in 2016. The show proved a huge hit, propelling Moore into new heights of fame and earning her a Golden Globe Award nomination for her performance.
The Return to Music
In 2006, Moore announced that she'd be returning to music. Her fifth studio album, 'Wild Hope', was released on June 19, 2007. According to Wikipedia, the album sold over 120,000 copies in the U.S. and more than 350,000 copies worldwide. In 2009, she followed up on the success of 'Wild Hope' with her sixth studio album, 'Amanda Leigh.' Her 7th and latest album, Silver Landings,' was released to favorable reviews in 2020.
Mandy Moore came to fame at the tender age of 15 years old. Over 30 years later, she's still in the business. Her primary focus may have shifted from music to acting, but she's working more than ever. Unlike the hundreds of one-hit-wonders from the 90s, Moore has proved she has the determination and the drive to sustain a lasting career... something that might just explain that massive net worth.
Written by Allen Lee
Read more posts by Allen Lee