Ellen Pompeo

Ellen Pompeo

Birth name: Ellen Kathleen Pompeo
Born: November 10, 1969
Age: 54
Birthplace: Everett, Massachusetts, U.S.
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Ellen Kathleen Pompeo (/pʌmˈpɛoʊ/, born November 10, 1969) is an American actress and producer. Born in Everett, Massachusetts, Pompeo moved to New York City, at the age of twenty-six, where she was discovered by a casting director who signed her for an advertisement campaign for L'Oreal. She made her screen debut with NBC's legal drama Law & Order, and then appeared in several other television shows, including the dark comedy Strangers with Candy, the medical drama Strong Medicine and the sitcom Friends.

Pompeo made her feature film debut in 1999 with the romantic comedy Coming Soon, and went on to play minor roles in films like In the Weeds and Mambo Café but found little success initially. A turning point came in her career in 2002, when she gained wide recognition for her starring role in Brad Silberling's drama Moonlight Mile. Pompeo then starred in ABC's medical drama Grey's Anatomy (2005-present), and garnered worldwide recognition for her portrayal of the titular character Dr. Meredith Grey. The role on the long running hit series earned her a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress - Television Series Drama nomination, and the Screen Actors Guild Award. The character became widely popular, making Pompeo one of the most popular TV actresses.

In 2015, Pompeo was ranked fourth in the list of highest paid TV actresses by Forbes, with the earnings of $11.5 million. Pompeo's other notable film roles include the comedy Old School (2003), the superhero film Daredevil (2003), the caper film Art Heist (2004), and the comedy drama Life of the party (2005). In October 2007, she was honored with Special Achievement in Entertaining by the National Italian American Foundation for her achievement in the entertainment industry. Pompeo married producer Chris Ivery in 2007 and the couple have two children together.


Early life

Ellen Pompeo was born in Everett, Massachusetts, on November 10, 1969, the daughter of Kathleen B. (née O'Keefe) and Joseph E. Pompeo, a surgeon. Her father was of Italian, English, and Irish descent, while her mother was of Irish ancestry. She was raised Roman Catholic. Her mother died of a painkiller overdose when Ellen was five, and her father remarried soon after; he died on September 1, 2012. in 2006, Pompeo told Allure "I think having my mother die at such a very young age - when she was 33 - I appreciate life so much." She has five siblings: three sisters and two brothers. She was nicknamed "the pencil", and "stracciatella" (an ice cream flavor). Pompeo worked as a bartender in Miami when she started dating fashion photographer Andrew Rosenthal. Together, they moved to New York City in 1995 where she was approached by a casting director to appear in commercials for Citibank and L'Oreal.


Debut and further roles (1995-2004)

Pompeo’s early work included commercials and small independent films.. Pompeo made her television debut in 1996 by guest-starring in the NBC legal police drama, Law & Order. She made her feature film debut in Coming Soon (1999), playing a small part. She made her second appearance on Law & Order in 2000, and then guest-starred on Strangers with Candy, Strong Medicine and Friends. Pompeo then moved to Los Angeles in 2001. She participated in the movie Mambo Café with Thalía.

A turning point came in 2002, when Pompeo was selected by director Brad Silberling for a lead role in his film Moonlight Mile, playing Jake Gyllenhaal's character's sympathetic love interest. Also in 2002, Pompeo appeared in the biographical crime drama film Catch Me If You Can and in 2003, she appeared in Old School as Luke Wilson's love interest. She portrayed Jim Carrey's ex-girlfriend, Naomi, in the 2004 film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Although her scenes were cut from that film, she felt grateful that director Michel Gondry selected her for his film. She played the role of Karen Page, in the 2003, Mark Steven Johnson Marvel Entertainment film Daredevil, based on the Marvel Comics character.

Grey's Anatomy and other works (2005-present)

Pompeo landed her first major role in 2005 on the ABC medical drama series Grey's Anatomy, created by Shonda Rhimes. She plays the title character and series' protagonist, Meredith Grey, a surgical intern at a prestigious hospital. In 2011, she was named the ninth highest paid TV actress, by Forbes, earning $7 million. Grey's Anatomy was a breakout hit in 2005, and in later seasons the highest-rated TV drama in the key 18-49 demographic.

Pompeo signed a new contract for Grey's Anatomy in 2011 that increased her salary to US$200,000 per episode. On May 10, 2012, it was announced that she signed a contract for two more seasons. She was named the eighth highest paid TV actress in 2012, earning $9 million. She extended her contract for two more years, which would have her involved with the show until its 12th season. As of 2013, she earns $350,000 per episode plus millions from syndication. She was ranked fourth in the list of highest paid television actresses again in 2015, in the Forbes list, with the earnings of $11.5 million.

Pompeo has been nominated for multiple awards for her performances in Grey's Anatomy. She and the Grey's Anatomy cast won Best Ensemble in a Television Series at the 2006 Satellite Awards. During the following year's ceremony, she was named Best Actress in a Television Drama Series. She was among the Grey's Anatomy cast members awarded the Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series accolade at the 13th Screen Actors Guild Awards, and received nominations in the same category in 2006 and 2008. Pompeo received a Best Performance by an Actress in a Drama Series nomination at the 64th Golden Globe Awards - the program won Best Drama Series at the same ceremony.

In 2007, Pompeo and the female cast and crew of Grey's Anatomy received the Women in Film Lucy Award, which honors those "whose work in television has positively influenced attitudes toward women."

Pompeo, with the increasing popularity of the show, garnered world-wide reputation among television viewers. and her performance has garnered her five People's Choice Award nominations, with three wins. At the 37th People's Choice Awards, she was nominated against Dempsey and Oh in the Favorite TV Doctor category, and the following year, she was a contender in the Favorite TV Drama Actress category. She then went on to win the in same category at the 39th People's Choice Awards. She would then go on to win the Award, at the 41st People's Choice Awards and the 42nd People's Choice Awards.

In 2007, show-business awards reporter Tom O'Neil commented that Pompeo was overdue for an Emmy Award nomination for her role in Grey's Anatomy. Readers of O'Neil's awards website, The Envelope, included Pompeo in their 2009 nominations for Best Drama Actress in the site's Gold Derby TV Awards.

On October 13, 2007, Pompeo was honored by the National Italian American Foundation for her achievement in entertainment at a black-tie gala in Washington, D.C. On October 27, 2011, Deadline.com reported that Pompeo had launched her own production company called Calamity Jane which sold its first project to ABC, an untitled show about female agents on the Secretary of State's security detail On August 2014, it was announced that Pompeo was developing two dramas with ABC Studios - adaptation of Rachel Carey’s 2013 novel Debt for ABC Family, and untitled female police drama for ABC.

In September 2014, Pompeo announced that she will not be acting after Grey's Anatomy ends its run. Pompeo said: "I definitely don’t have a strong desire to act after Grey's. I definitely feel myself transitioning. I don't find acting terribly empowering."

Pompeo appeared in the music video of Bad Blood, a song from the fifth studio album 1989 (2014) of her close friend American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift. The music video was directed by Joseph Kahn, and filmed in Los Angeles on April 12, 2015, but is set in London. The music video premiered on May 17, 2015, at the start of the Billboard Music Awards. Each actor chose their character's name. Swift plays Catastrophe who is training for her revenge against a close friend Arsyn, played by Selena Gomez. The other characters in the video are shown in succession, some in training with Catastrophe and Pompeo plays one of them named Luna.

In October 2015, it was announced that Pompeo was developing the Spanish thriller Motivos Personales with London based company, New Media Vision.

Personal life

Ellen Pompeo met Chris Ivery in a Los Angeles grocery store in 2003 and began dating and then got married in 2007, with then New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg as the legal witness to the ceremony. In 2009, Pompeo gave birth to her first child a daughter Stella In 2014, welcomed another daughter, Sienna, with the help of a surrogate mother.

Speaking during a press conference, Pompeo, opened up about a fateful meeting with Jake Gyllenhaal. She said they were introduced when Jake was roughly 21 years old, and she was roughly 33, at the auditions for Moonlight Mile. "I was...in the waiting room and the director and this guy, Jake Gyllenhaal, who I had never heard of—no one had ever heard of him at that point—walked past me." Gyllenhaal hit on her, which made her quite uncomfortable. They both ended up working together in Moonlight Mile.

Pompeo suffers from several allergies and asthma. She owns two toy poodles with her husband because they don't shed: "I have asthma, so those are the only kinds of dogs I can have." Pompeo follows a healthy lifestyle, meditates twice a day for 20 minutes each, and does so inside her trailer in between takes as well.

Pompeo along with Shonda Rhimes, and the leads of Rhimes' ABC Thursday line-up shows Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder, Kerry Washington and Viola Davis, appeared in an ad campaign for United States presidential election, 2016, for Hillary Clinton comparing her to the protagonists of those series. The ad was part of the Clinton campaign’s ongoing effort to make up ground among young women. In the video the actresses note, "Olivia Pope, Annalise Keating and Meredith Grey are “brilliant,” “complex” women who fight for justice and give voice “to the voiceless", our characters are on television, the real world has Hillary Clinton.” Rhimes, Davis, Pompeo, and Washington each take turns speaking as they praise Clinton. Clinton responded to the video with a tweet saying, “Talk about a power lineup. Thank you for being on this team!"



Year Title Role Notes
1995 Do You Have the Time Woman Short film
1999 8 ½ x 11 Human Resources Woman Short film
1999 Coming Soon Upset Girl
2000 Eventual Wife Beth Short film
2000 In the Weeds Martha
2000 Mambo Café Stacy
2002 Moonlight Mile Bertie Knox
2002 Catch Me If You Can Marci
2003 Old School Nicole
2003 Daredevil Karen Page
2003 Undermind Flynn
2004 Nobody's Perfect Veronica Short film
2004 Art Heist Sandra Walker
2004 Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Naomi Scenes deleted
2005 Life of the Party Phoebe Elgin


Year Title Role Notes
1996 Law & Order Jenna Weber Episode: "Savior"
1999 Strangers with Candy Lizzie Abrams Episode: "Feather in the Storm"
2000 Law & Order Laura Kendrick Episode: "Fools for Love"
2000 Get Real Nina Adler Episode: "History Lessons"
2001 The Job Sue Episode: "Anger"
2001 Strong Medicine Quincy Dunne Episode: "Wednesday Night Fever"
2004 Friends Missy Goldberg Episode: "The One Where the Stripper Cries"
2005-present Grey's Anatomy Dr. Meredith Grey / Narrator Lead role
2015 Repeat After Me Herself Episode 8

Music video

Year Title Artist Role Ref.
2015 "Bad Blood" Taylor Swift Luna

Awards and nominations

Year Association Category Work Result Ref.
2005 Teen Choice Awards Choice TV - Breakout Female Grey's Anatomy Nominated
2006 Screen Actors Guild Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Grey's Anatomy Nominated
2006 Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actress Grey's Anatomy Nominated
2006 Satellite Awards Best Ensemble in Television Grey's Anatomy Won
2007 Golden Globe Awards Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Drama Grey's Anatomy Nominated
2007 Screen Actors Guild Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Grey's Anatomy Won
2007 Satellite Awards Best Actress - Drama Series Grey's Anatomy Won
2007 National Italian American Foundation Special Achievement in Entertaining Won
2008 Screen Actors Guild Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Grey's Anatomy Nominated
2011 People's Choice Awards Favorite TV Doctor Grey's Anatomy Nominated
2012 Favorite TV Drama Actress Grey's Anatomy Nominated
2013 Favorite TV Drama Actress Grey's Anatomy Won
2015 Favorite Dramatic TV Actress Grey's Anatomy Won
2015 Taormina Film Fest Taormina Arte Award Won
2016 People's Choice Awards Favorite Dramatic TV Actress Grey's Anatomy Won

Ellen Pompeo supports the following charitable cause: ALS (amyrotrophic lateral sclerosis).

[ Source: Wikipedia ]

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