What sisters, you may ask? Oh, just the most famous twins in the world, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. And it may seem extremely redundant to specifically state that, but there really are people out there, in the year 2021, who have no idea that WandaVision’s Elizabeth Olsen had a DNA connection to the Olsen twins. And since the Olsen twins were already extremely famous by the time Elizabeth decided she wanted to get into acting, it was going to be nearly impossible for Elizabeth to launch a career without people screaming “NEPOTISM!!!“. So Elizabeth thought about how to avoid such awkwardness, and her solution, at the time, was to erase the name Olsen from her resume and headshots.
Elizabeth recently told Glamour UK that she knew she was growing up in the shadow of the Olsen twins when she was younger (there’s a two-year age difference between them), and that around 10 years old, she knew that acting was something she wanted to get into. But she also knew that saying, “Hi, I’m the Olsen twins’ little sister” was going to open pretty much every door whether she had talent or not. And she didn’t want that, she wanted to earn it. Just like so many actors with famous relatives before her, Elizabeth convinced herself that her ticket to fame would be hard work, zero connections, and a vague, unfamiliar last name. So she decided that when the time came, she’d distance herself from the Olsen brand. via Glamour UK:
“I was 10 and I was curious about auditioning…and I realized very quickly it wasn’t for me because I was missing my sports teams, my dance class and all the extracurricular activities at school. But during that time, I thought ‘I don’t want to be associated with [Mary-Kate and Ashley]’, for some reason. I guess I understood what nepotism was like inherently as a 10-year-old. I don’t know if I knew the word, but there is some sort of association of not earning something that I think bothered me at a very young age. It had to do with my own insecurities, but I was 10. So I don’t know how much I processed, but I did think, ‘I’m going to be Elizabeth Chase [her middle name] when I become an actress.’”
Clearly, everyone would have known who Elizabeth’s sisters were when this unknown actress with zero acting credits named Elizabeth Chase suddenly booked herself a meeting with every big agent in town. That might explain why she’s billed as Elizabeth Olsen. Elizabeth says she’s got a good relationship with her sisters, so clearly, she doesn’t hate being associated with them professionally. Also, as she has previously stated, she really wanted to do the whole acting thing all by herself, because she knows that there will always be nepotism whispers when her name is brought up. Besides, it might have been weirder had she shown up to auditions as Elizabeth Chase. Because her face looks extremely Olsen-y, and that would be a dead giveaway. “Elizabeth Chase? Uh-huh, or are you actually the Olsen twins stacked one on top of each other in a trench coat.”