Last Updated: April 30, 2024
Richest CelebritiesActors
Net Worth:
$80 Million
$20 Million
Nov 10, 1969 (54 years old)
5 ft 6 in (1.7 m)
United States of America
💰 Compare Ellen Pompeo's Net Worth

What Is Ellen Pompeo's Net Worth and Salary?

Ellen Pompeo is an American actress who has a net worth of $80 million. Ellen Pompeo is probably best known for her role as Meredith Grey in the ABC medical drama "Grey's Anatomy." That role made Ellen one of the highest-paid actresses on the planet. She earns around $20 million per year from the role, thanks to her $575,000 per-episode salary PLUS syndication royalties and revenue.

While "Grey's Anatomy" remains her most prominent work, Pompeo has also appeared in films such as "Moonlight Mile" (2002), "Old School" (2003), and "Daredevil" (2003). She has used her platform to advocate for various causes, including equal pay for women in the entertainment industry and support for charitable organizations.

"Grey's Anatomy" Salary

For seasons 11 and 12, Ellen earned a total of $300,000 per episode, roughly $7.5 million per year. For seasons 13 and 14, she earned $350,000 per episode, roughly $8.7 million per year. At this point, she did not own any backend equity points on the show. After the 14th season wrapped, Pompeo began negotiations for a new contract. Ellen actually approached "Grey's" creator, Shonda Rhimes, for negotiating advice. Shonda told her:

"Decide what you think you're worth and then ask for what you think you're worth. Nobody's just going to give it to you."

When negotiations were over, Pompeo walked away with a per-episode pay bump to $575,000. That brought her single-season salary up to $14.4 million. But that's not all! She also was given two backend percentage points on the show's syndication profits. Every year, that brings Ellen an additional $6-7 million. In total, starting in season 15, she would earn a bit more than $20 million for "Grey's Anatomy." But that's still not all! Ellen's new deal also gives her a producer credit on future "Grey's" spinoffs and pilot commitments for her production company. For season 19, the star has scaled back her role on the television series for the first time. Pompeo intends to stay on as an executive producer and continue her signature voiceovers for the show.

Early Life

Ellen Pompeo was born Ellen Kathleen Pompeo on November 10, 1969, in Everett, Massachusetts. She was brought up Catholic by her parents, Joseph and Kathleen Pompeo. Sadly, her mother died at age 33 of a painkiller overdose when Ellen was just five. Her father remarried soon after. Pompeo is the youngest of five siblings–three sisters and two brothers.

Early Acting Career

In the mid-1990s, Ellen moved to Miami, where she worked as a bartender. She then moved to New York City in 1995 with a boyfriend while pursuing a modeling career. While in New York, she was discovered by a casting director and was invited to appear in various ads for Citibank and L'Oreal. She made her TV debut in 1996 when she guest starred in NBC's "Law & Order." Her feature film debut was a small part in 1999's "Coming Soon." She appeared again on "Law & Order" in 2000.

Pompeo moved to Los Angeles in 2001 and appeared in the movie "Mambo Cafe." A turning point came when she was cast in the 2002 movie "Moonlight Mile," playing Jake Gyllenhaal's sympathetic love interest. Her performance caught the attention of critics, with many commentators noting that she was considered Academy Award nomination worthy. In 2002, she appeared in "Catch Me If You Can." In 2003, she was in the Luke Wilson/Will Ferrell comedy "Old School." She then portrayed Jim Carrey's ex-girlfriend, Naomi, in the 2004 film "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," though her scenes were eventually cut from the film. In 2003, Pompeo played the role of Karen Page in the Marvel movie "Daredevil."


In 2005, Ellen's career launched into the stratosphere after she was cast in the ABC medical drama "Grey's Anatomy" helmed by Shonda Rhimes. Pompeo was cast as the lead role and title character, Meredith Grey, a surgical intern at the fictional Seattle Grace Hospital. The timing could not have been better. Ellen would later admit that she was "perilously close" to being broke when she read the pilot script. The show was an immediate hit and well-received by critics. Her performance has nabbed her five People's Choice Award nominations and three wins. In 2007, Pompeo was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Drama Series, and "Grey's Anatomy" won Best Drama Series that same year. Later that year, Pompeo was honored at a black-tie gala by the National Italian American Foundation for her achievement in entertainment. As of this writing, "Grey's Anatomy" is still going strong in its 20th season, having aired over 420 episodes.

In 2011, Ellen launched her own production company called Calamity Jane and sold its first project to ABC. Pompeo appeared in the music video for Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood" in 2014. Since 2011, Ellen has been involved with other projects as a producer and made her directorial debut with a "Grey's Anatomy" episode in season 13. In August 2014, Pompeo announced she was developing two dramas for ABC Studios. She was listed as a co-producer for a "Grey's Anatomy" spinoff titled "Station 19." In 2019, Pompeo appeared as a guest judge on "RuPaul's Drag Race: All Stars."

(Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

Personal Life

Pompeo married music producer Chris Ivery on November 9, 2007, with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg serving as the legal witness to the ceremony. They met in 2003 at a Los Angeles grocery store. They have three children together: two daughters and a son.

Pompeo has long been rumored by the media to have an eating disorder, which she has firmly denied. She has heavily criticized reports, stating she is worried about the young women who look up to her getting the wrong idea. Ellen, along with Shonda Rhimes, Kerry Washington, and Viola Davis, appeared in an ad campaign supporting Hillary Clinton for the 2016 election.

Pompeo purchased a Malibu beach home in 2013 from "Friends" co-creator Marta Kauffman worth $6.4 million. She and her husband recently bought the property directly behind the home for a reported $10 million. In 2011, the couple bought a farmhouse in the Hamptons for $925,000 that sold in 2020 for $2.995 million. According to the Los Angeles Times, Pompeo has also sold two Hollywood Hills homes in recent years at $2.075 million and $2.765 million.

Ellen Pompeo Career Earnings

  • Grey's Anatomy
    $200 Thousand/episode
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