Melanie Lynskey at TIFF in 2009
|Born||Melanie Jayne Lynskey
16 May 1977
New Plymouth, New Zealand
|Spouse(s)||Jimmi Simpson (m. 2007; div. 2014)|
Melanie Jayne Lynskey (born 16 May 1977) is a New Zealand-born actress, known for playing Michelle Pierson on Togetherness, Rose on Two and a Half Men, and characters in the films Happy Christmas, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Hello I Must Be Going, Win Win, Up in the Air, The Informant!, Away We Go, Flags of Our Fathers, Shattered Glass, Sweet Home Alabama, Coyote Ugly, Ever After and Heavenly Creatures.
Lynskey was born in New Plymouth, New Zealand, to a mother who is a former nurse and a father who is an orthopedic surgeon. She is the oldest of five children, and has three brothers and one sister.
In 1994, Lynskey made her feature film debut at age 16, starring as Pauline Parker in the cult film Heavenly Creatures, which was inspired by the Parker–Hulme murder case. The film was directed by Peter Jackson and co-starred Kate Winslet. Lynskey won Best Actress at the 1995 New Zealand Film and TV Awards for her performance.
In 1998, Lynskey appeared in the Drew Barrymore film Ever After, a re-imagining of the Cinderella story. This was followed by parts in Detroit Rock City, But I'm a Cheerleader, The Cherry Orchard, Shooters and Coyote Ugly, as well as the independent feature Snakeskin. Lynskey received her second nomination for Best Actress at the New Zealand Film and TV Awards for her performance in Snakeskin.
In 2002, Lynskey appeared in the Reese Witherspoon romantic comedy Sweet Home Alabama, co-starred with Katie Holmes in Abandon and made her television debut in Rose Red, a miniseries penned by Stephen King.
In 2003, Lynskey played a writer for The New Republic in Shattered Glass, a drama based on the exploits of former journalist Stephen Glass. Later that year, she landed the part of Rose – Charlie Harper's deranged but charming neighbor – on the CBS comedy series Two and a Half Men.
Despite leaving the main cast in 2005 to concentrate on film work, Lynskey continued to make guest appearances on the show, with a storyline where her character set her sights on Walden (Ashton Kutcher).
In 2006, she played the wife of Rene Gagnon in Clint Eastwood's World War II-set Flags of Our Fathers, and returned to New Zealand in late 2007 to a starring role in Show of Hands, which premiered at the 2008 Montreal Film Festival and earned Lynskey a nomination for Best Actress at the Qantas Television Awards.
In 2009, Lynskey garnered praise for her performance in Away We Go, directed by Sam Mendes, playing a seemingly happy adoptive parent who hides a secret heartache. She also played the female lead – opposite Matt Damon – in Steven Soderbergh's The Informant!, based on the true story of FBI whistleblower Mark Whitacre. The film premiered at the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival. Soderbergh told the Los Angeles Times, "She is so watchable, you never quite know what you're going to get, you just know it's going to be good. Her rhythms are really unusual, like her cadence and her reaction times to things, and the way she sort of lays out a sentence. It's just really, really interesting." Lynskey counts her time working on The Informant! as one of her favorite experiences.
Also in 2009, Lynskey co-starred in Leaves of Grass with Edward Norton, and Jason Reitman's Academy Award-nominated Up in the Air, in which she played the younger sister of George Clooney's character. In October 2009, Lynskey was presented with a Spotlight Award by the Hollywood Film Festival.
In 2011, she co-starred in Win Win with Paul Giamatti. The following year, Lynskey appeared in Focus Features' comedy Seeking a Friend for the End of the World with Steve Carell, and had a key role in the film adaptation of Stephen Chbosky's novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower, playing the mentally disturbed aunt of main character Charlie (Logan Lerman). The independent drama Hello I Must Be Going, in which she portrayed Amy, a dispirited 30-something who finds herself having to move back in with her parents, was particularly well-received by critics. The performance earned her a nomination for Breakthrough Actor at the 2012 Gotham Awards. Hello I Must Be Going was selected to open the 2012 Sundance Film Festival.
In 2001, Lynskey met American actor Jimmi Simpson during the filming of Rose Red, in which they both appeared. They became engaged in 2005 and married on 14 April 2007, in a chapel on Lake Hayes, near Queenstown, New Zealand.
|1994||Heavenly Creatures||Pauline Parker||New Zealand Film Award for Best Actress|
|1996||Frighteners, TheThe Frighteners||Deputy|
|1999||Foreign Correspondents||Melody||Nominated—Chicago Alt.Film Festival for Best Actress|
|1999||Detroit Rock City||Beth|
|1999||Cherry Orchard, TheThe Cherry Orchard||Dunyasha|
|1999||But I'm a Cheerleader||Hilary|
|2001||Snakeskin||Alice||Nominated—New Zealand Film Award for Best Actress|
|2002||Sweet Home Alabama||Lurlynn|
|2003||Shattered Glass||Amy Brand|
|2004||The Nearly Unadventurous Life of Zoe Cadwaulder||Zoe Cadwaulder||Short film|
|2006||Flags of our Fathers||Pauline Harnois|
|2007||Itty Bitty Titty Committee||Plastic Surgery Lady||Uncredited|
|2008||Show of Hands||Jess||Nominated—Qantas Television Award for Best Actress|
|2008||Quiet Little Marriage, AA Quiet Little Marriage||Monique|
|2009||Away We Go||Munch Garnett||CinEuphoria Award for Best Supporting Actress (International)|
|2009||Informant!, TheThe Informant!||Ginger Whitacre||Nominated—Visa Entertainment Screen Award for Best Actress|
|2009||Up in the Air||Julie Bingham||2nd place—Central Ohio Film Critics Association for Best Ensemble
Nominated—Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Denver Film Critics Society for Best Ensemble
Nominated—Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Ensemble
|2009||Leaves of Grass||Colleen|
|2010||Helena from the Wedding||Alice|
|2012||Eye of the Hurricane||Amelia Kyte|
|2012||Hello I Must Be Going||Amy||Nominated—Gotham Breakthrough Award|
|2012||Seeking a Friend for the End of the World||Karen|
|2012||The Perks of Being a Wallflower||Aunt Helen||Nominated—San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Performance by an Ensemble|
|2012||Putzel||Sally||Nominated—Fargo Film Festival Award for Best Actress|
|2013||The Big Ask (aka Teddy Bears)||Hannah|
|2014||They Came Together||Brenda|
|2014||Chu and Blossom||Miss Shoemaker|
|2014||Goodbye to All That||Annie|
|2015||We'll Never Have Paris||Devon|
|2015||Digging for Fire||Post-production|
|2002||Rose Red||Rachel Wheaton||3 episodes|
|2003||Shield, TheThe Shield||Marcy||2 episodes|
|2003–2015||Two and a Half Men||Rose||63 episodes|
|2007||Drive||Wendy Patrakas||6 episodes|
|2008||L Word, TheThe L Word||Clea Mason||2 episodes|
|2008||Comanche Moon||Pearl Coleman||3 episodes|
|2008||Psych||Emily Bloom||Episode: "Black and Tan: A Crime of Fashion"|
|2009||It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia||Kate||Episode: "The Gang Exploits the Mortgage Crisis"|
|2010–2012||Life & Times of Tim, TheThe Life & Times of Tim||Becky (voice)||6 episodes|
|2010||Memphis Beat||Annalise||Episode: "Polk Salad Annie"|
|2012||House||Natalie Tavares||Episode: "Better Half"|
|2014||Over the Garden Wall||Beatrice (voice)||8 episodes|
|2015||Togetherness||Michelle Pierson||8 episodes|
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