Born and raised in New Plymouth, New Zealand, 16 year-old Melanie Lynskey was discovered when she was chosen by Fran Walsh and Peter Jackson to star in their film "Heavenly Creatures" (1994). Directed by Jackson, the film told the story of the notorious Parker-Hulme murder case, in which two teenage girls murdered the mother of one of them. Lynskey and Kate Winslet were roundly praised for their roles and Jackson and Walsh earned an Academy Award nomination for best screenplay. Lynskey won Best Actress for the role in her native New Zealand. Her first role behind her, Lynskey finished school and played a supporting role in Jackson's next film, "The Frighteners" (1996). She played both supporting roles in larger budget studio films like "Ever After: A Cinderella Story" (1998) starring Drew Barrymore, as well as meatier roles in independent features like "But I'm A Cheerleader" (1999). In 2003, Lynskey landed a regular guest starring role on the sitcom "Two and a Half Men" (CBS, 2003-2015), and continued to make appearances on the show over the course of its 12 seasons. The consistent work allowed Lynskey to continue her unusual career path, contributing critically acclaimed performances to smaller films like "Shattered Glass" (2003), "The Informant!" (2009), and "Win Win" (2011). In 2015, Lynskey debuted in one of the lead roles on "Togetherness" (HBO, 2015-16), again earning rave reviews. In 2018, Lynskey played one of the leads on the show "Castle Rock" (Hulu, 2018-), a series based on the stories of Stephen King.