|Famous For: Grey's Anatomy||Currently Known For: Actress|
Currently Known For Actress
“You’re my person. You will always be my person.” Leaving her hometown of Everett, Massachusetts in her early 20s, Ellen Pompeo briefly lived in Miami, Florida before she moved to New York City with her boyfriend, fashion photographer Andrew Rosenthal. Once in the Big Apple, it was only a matter of time before the 26-year-old was discovered for her stunning beauty and was invited to appear in a L’Oreal campaign. Spending the next few years in a slew of other commercials and independent films, Pompeo finally made her television debut in 1996 on Law & Order.
Instantly realizing she was destined for the spotlight, Pompeo made her silver screen debut in the 1999 film Coming Soon and followed up the gig with appearances in Strong Medicine and Friends before relocating to Los Angeles in 2001. A year later, Pompeo’s hard work finally paid off when she was cast opposite Jake Gyllenhaal in Moonlight Mile and in the drama Catch Me If You Can. With appearances in Old School, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Daredevil, Pompeo’s career was on an upward spiral by 2005 when she received the call of a lifetime from television producer Shonda Rhimes.
Cast as Dr. Meredith Grey on the ABC medical drama Grey’s Anatomy, Pompeo wowed audiences with her performance as the young surgical intern navigating her career, friendships and love life at Seattle Grace Hospital. With the show deemed an instant hit in 2005 and having since retained its audience for 13 years and counting, Pompeo’s incredible performance has been rewarded with a Golden Globe nomination and a Screen Actors Guild Award as well as a hefty paycheck that has made her one of the highest paid actresses on television today. So just how much is she worth?
According to Vanity Fair, the 47-year-old Pompeo is currently ranked fourth on the list of highest-earning television actresses losing out only to the equally talented Sofia Vergara of Modern Family and Kaley Cuoco of The Big Bang Theory. As of 2014, Pompeo was raking in $300,000 per episode but, since renegotiating her contract, her earnings have gone up significantly with her 2015 earnings totaling a whopping $14.5 million. With the show now in its 13th season, there’s no doubt that Pompeo will see her salary continue to climb as she adds to her already impressive $33 million net worth.
Certainly not struggling to put food on the table or make rent with her million-dollar paydays, Pompeo and her husband, Chris Ivery, are happy to lead a life of luxury with their two daughters in their brand new Mediterranean villa in Los Angeles. Purchased in 2014, Pompeo spent six months remodeling the 16,000 square-foot home to ensure it reflected her every taste and whim. When all was said and done, the home was nearly unrecognizable.
Surrounded by gorgeous views of Los Angeles, Pompeo cashed in on the scenery by enlarging the windows throughout the home and adding a terrace just off the living room. The old, polished wood floors were exchanged for vintage limestone pavers and planks of textured French oak as the French doors were replaced with larger, 11-foot-tall doors to flood the living room with natural light. Leaving nothing untouched, the kitchen was completely renovated to include new granite countertops and chef-grade appliances.
Down the spiraling staircase and out the backdoor, Pompeo ensured the backyard was in pristine condition with a terraced playground for her children as well as a large swimming pool and cabana. The actress transformed the front yard into a garden to match the beauty of the villa, sparing no expense in purchasing the finest decorative pieces. The finished product, now complete with 50-year-old olive trees and a lavish 19th-century fountain, makes a stunning first impression.
While many were shocked the actress took on such a large project in the midst of her busy filming schedule, Pompeo told People magazine that her motives were simple. “My home is a place to have a good time with the kids,” she said. “I had such a painful childhood and have such a happy family life now. To be able to have all the fruit trees and the chickens and everything, I think it’s so nice for the kids. I think everything I did outside was with the girls in mind.”
Aside from creating a beautiful home for her family and splurging on a Range Rover, Pompeo isn’t a big spender and chooses to donate a large portion of her fortune to organizations like Imagine LA, the Clara Lionel Foundation and the American Cancer Society. She also leverages her position in the media to raise awareness for causes close to heart with her greatest effort to date coming nearly a decade ago when she teamed up with the Jackie Robinson Foundation in a charity auction where the winner paid $17,000 for a lunch date with the Grey’s Anatomy star. How’s that for supporting a good cause!