From Teen Stardom to This Is Us: A Look Back at Mandy Moore's Career
The This Is Us actress has come a long way from her days as a 15-year-old pop star
SUPER SWEET BEGINNINGS
In 1999, a 15-year-old Moore entered the pop scene with her debut album, So Real, and its super smash hit "Candy." This year on The Late Late Show, Moore expressed some embarrassment over the track. "My very first music video, I had to dance in it and it is abysmal," she said. "I think the powers that be realized very early on that, 'You know what, you should just have background dancers.'"
STILL IN THE SPOTLIGHT
At age 16, Mandy Moore released her second album, I Wanna Be With You. The album's hit single (of the same name) was featured on the soundtrack to the 2000 film Center Stage.
PIVOT TO ACTING
Moore began to shift her focus to acting in 2001, when she starred in The Princess Diaries (as a teen mean girl) alongside Anne Hathaway and Heather Matarazzo. In 2016, Moore opened up to InStyle about working with director Gary Marshall on the film. "He had no business casting me," she said. "I was 16, I'd never done a movie before, and I didn't know what I was doing. So I think the highlight of the film was working with him. He was the first director I worked with, and he was the loveliest."
A FILM TO REMEMBER
Perhaps Moore's most memorable character was Jamie Sullivan in the gut-wrenching 2002 teen drama A Walk to Remember, her first starring movie role.
As her first foray into indie films, Moore starred in the dark 2004 comedy Saved alongside Jena Malone and Macaulay Culkin. "I couldnt pass up the opportunity and I'm glad I didn't," Moore said about her experience working on the film. "Not just for the film itself but for the experience. This was my first independent film experience. It was great. It was like being in high school or college, that whole sort of thing."
In 2006, Moore broke into television with her recurring role on Scrubs. Later that year, she starred in the satirical comedy American Dreamz with Dennis Quaid and Hugh Grant.
PERSONAL LIFE UPS AND DOWNS
In 2009, just a month after getting engaged, Moore and singer Ryan Adams wed in an under-the-radar Atlanta, Georgia, ceremony. In 2014, they collaborated on Adams' self-titled album, and, a year later, announced that they would be divorcing. "My story deviated in a different direction than I expected," Moore told PEOPLE exclusively of her 2015 split. "But ultimately, life is about being happy and fulfilled and sometimes that means making hard choices."
BACK IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Moore now stars on the hit NBC drama This Is Us, playing a mom of triplets, including one adopted son. Her performance has earned significant buzz (and a Golden Globe nomination). "My jaw was definitely on the ground and I just started shaking. I've never been nominated for anything in my life. I feel like I'm on another planet right now. It's so exciting, but I'm most excited about the show getting nominated," she told EW about the Globes nod.