Richest CelebritiesActors
Net Worth:
$5 Million
May 16, 1977 (46 years old)
New Plymouth
5 ft 6 in (1.7 m)
New Zealand
💰 Compare Melanie Lynskey's Net Worth

What Is Melanie Lynskey's Net Worth?

Melanie Lynskey is a New Zealand-born actress who has a net worth of $5 million. Melanie Lynskey played Rose on the CBS sitcom "Two and a Half Men" (2003–2015), Michelle Pierson on the HBO comedy-drama "Togetherness" (2015–2016), Molly Strand on the Hulu psychological horror series "Castle Rock" (2018), and Rosemary Thomson in the FX miniseries "Mrs. America" (2020), and she has won several awards for her portrayal of Shauna on the Showtime drama "Yellowjackets" (2021–present) and real-life murder victim Betty Gore in the Hulu miniseries "Candy" (2022). Melanie has more than 80 acting credits to her name, including the films "Heavenly Creatures" (1994), "Ever After" (1998), "But I'm a Cheerleader" (1999), "Sweet Home Alabama" (2002), "Away We Go" (2009), "Up in the Air" (2009), "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" (2012), "I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore" (2017), and "Don't Look Up" (2021) and the television series "Drive" (2007), "Girlboss" (2017), and "The Last of Us" (2023). Lynskey has also lent her voice to animated projects such as "The Life & Times of Tim" (2010–2012), "Over the Garden Wall" (2014), "Future-Worm!" (2016–2018), and "Summer Camp Island" (2018).

Early Life

Melanie Lynskey was born Melanie Jayne Lynskey on May 16, 1977, in New Plymouth, Taranaki, New Zealand. She is the daughter of real estate agent Kay Lynskey and orthopedic surgeon Tim Lynskey, and she has four younger siblings. During Melanie's youth, her family spent a year living in England before moving back to New Zealand. After graduating from New Plymouth Girls' High School, where she appeared in school plays, Lynskey attended Victoria University of Wellington.


Melanie made her film debut in 1994's "Heavenly Creatures" at the age of 16 after a casting director visited New Plymouth Girls' High School, and she followed it with "The Frighteners" (1996), "Ever After" (1998), "Foreign Correspondents" (1999), "Detroit Rock City" (1999), "But I'm a Cheerleader" (1999), and "The Cherry Orchard" (1999).

Lynskey's first television project was the 2002 Stephen King miniseries "Rose Red," and in 2003, she guest-starred on "The Shield" and landed the role of Rose on the CBS sitcom "Two and a Half Men." The series aired 262 episodes over 12 seasons, and Melanie appeared in more than 60 episodes. In the early 2000s, she also appeared in the films "Coyote Ugly" (2000), "Snakeskin" (2001), "Shooters" (2002), "Abandon" (2002), "Claustrophobia" (2003), and "Shattered Glass" (2003), and she co-starred with Reese Witherspoon, Josh Lucas, and Patrick Dempsey in 2002's "Sweet Home Alabama," which grossed $180.6 million at the box office. In 2006, Lynskey played Pauline Harnois in the Clint Eastwood-directed war drama "Flags of Our Fathers," and the following year she starred as Wendy Patrakas on the Fox series "Drive."

Melanie Lynskey

Michael Buckner/Getty Images

Next, Melanie appeared in the miniseries "Comanche Moon" (2008) and the films "Show of Hands" (2008), "A Quiet Little Marriage" (2008), "Away We Go" (2009), "Up in the Air" (2009), "The Informant!" (2009), "Leaves of Grass" (2009), "Helena from the Wedding" (2010), "Win Win" (2011), "Hello I Must Be Going" (2012), "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World" (2012), "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" (2012), "Happy Christmas" (2014), "They Came Together" (2014), and "Goodbye to All That" (2014). She guest-starred on "Psych" (2008), "The L Word" (2008), "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" (2009), "Memphis Beat" (2010), "House" (2012), and "Key & Peele" (2015), and from 2015 to 2016, she played Michelle Pierson on HBO's "Togetherness." Around this time, Lynskey appeared in the miniseries "Sunshine" (2017) and the films "Digging for Fire" (2015), "The Intervention" (2016), "Folk Hero & Funny Guy" (2016), "I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore" (2017), "XX" (2017), and "The Changeover" (2017). In 2017, she had recurring roles on Netflix's "Girlboss" and "Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later," and in 2018, she played Molly Strand on the Hulu Stephen King series "Castle Rock."

Melanie guest-starred on "Easy" (2019), "Young Sheldon" (2021), and "Mom" (2021), and in 2020, she portrayed conservative activist Rosemary Thomson in the FX miniseries "Mrs. America." In 2021, she appeared in the film "Don't Look Up," which earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture, and began starring as Shauna on the critically-acclaimed Showtime series "Yellowjackets." Lynskey received a Primetime Emmy nomination for "Yellowjackets" in 2022, and she has won numerous awards for her performance. In 2022, she portrayed Betty Gore in the Hulu miniseries "Candy," which is based on the case of Candy Montgomery, who was accused of murdering Gore in 1980 after having an affair with her husband. In 2023, Melanie appeared in two episodes of the HBO post-apocalyptic drama "The Last of Us" as Kathleen, the "ruthless leader of a revolutionary movement."

Personal Life

Melanie became engaged to her "Rose Red" co-star Jimmi Simpson in 2005, and they married in New Zealand on April 14, 2007. Lynskey filed for divorce in September 2012 due to "irreconcilable differences," and the divorce was finalized in May 2014.

In early 2017, Melanie announced that she was engaged to her boyfriend of four years, actor Jason Ritter. The couple welcomed a daughter in December 2018, and they married in 2020. During a 2022 interview on "The Jess Cagle Show," Lynskey said of the wedding, "I was going to Canada for 'Yellowjackets' and I was on the phone with somebody and they said, 'Oh, he won't be allowed in. I was like, 'We have a child. What? I can't leave for six months,' so I was like, 'We have to get married tomorrow.'" She added that the information ended up being incorrect and that they "got married on our front porch of our little rental house in Atlanta" with two friends in attendance.

Melanie decided to become a vegetarian at the age of 10 after she learned about sheep farming, but she later began identifying as a pescetarian. Lynskey struggled with an eating disorder for several years, and in a 2022 interview with "denizen," she stated:

"It's a bummer to have to say this but the biggest challenge I've faced in my career would be my own body image and the way that the industry views people's bodies. There's sort of an implicit expectation of perfection because everybody looks the same but I had a bad eating disorder for 10 years and even when I was like 58 kilograms I would still be shamed in wardrobe fittings for not being sample size."

Melanie has been body-shamed by fans of "Yellowjackets," and in January 2022, she tweeted:

"The story of my life since Yellowjackets premiered. Most egregious are the 'I care about her health!!' people…bitch you don't see me on my Peleton! You don't see me running through the park with my child. Skinny does not always equal healthy."

Awards and Nominations

Lynskey has won several awards for her performance in "Yellowjackets," including an Awards Daily Cooler Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series, a Critics Choice Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series, a Critics Choice Super Award for Best Actress in a Horror Series, a Gracie Allen Award for Actress in a Leading Role – Drama, a Hollywood Critics Association Television Award for Best Actress in a Broadcast Network or Cable Series, Drama, an International Online Cinema Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series, and an Online Film & Television Association Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series. She also received a Primetime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. She shared a Behind the Voice Actors Award for Best Vocal Ensemble in a New Television Series with her "Over the Garden Wall" co-stars (2015) and a San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Ensemble Performance with her "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" castmates (2012), and the "Don't Look Up" cast earned a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture (2022).

Melanie was honored with the Spotlight Award at the 2009 Hollywood Film Awards and the Emerging Master award at the 2014 RiverRun International Film Festival, and she received a Special Jury Prize – Dramatic for Individual Performance for "The Intervention" at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. She has won a New Zealand Film and TV Award for Best Actress for "Heavenly Creatures" (1995) and a CinEuphoria Award for Best Supporting Actress – International Competition for "Away We Go" (2011) as well. Lynskey has also earned nominations for "Foreign Correspondents" (Chicago Alt.Film Fest), "Togetherness" (Critics Choice Television Awards), "Putzel" (Fargo Film Festival), "Hello I Must Be Going" (Gotham Awards), "Sunshine" (Monte-Carlo TV Festival), "Snakeskin" (New Zealand Film and TV Awards), "The Informant!" (New Zealand Screen Awards), "I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore" (Gotham Awards),  "Show of Hands" (New Zealand Film and TV Awards), and "Candy" (Critics Choice Awards, Hollywood Critics Association Television Awards, and Satellite Awards).

Real Estate

In 2004, Lynskey paid $597,500 for a 1,472 square foot home in the Echo Park area of Los Angeles. She put the four-bedroom, two-bathroom bungalow on the market for $899,000 in 2017 and accepted an offer of $950,000 less than two weeks after listing the home.

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
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