Hilary Erhard Duff
(born September 28, 1987) is an American actress, singer-songwriter, entrepreneur, model, producer and author. Born and raised in Houston, Texas, she appeared in local theater productions and television commercials in her early childhood. Duff was established as a teen idol after being cast in the Disney Channel television series Lizzie McGuire
in the early 2000s and its motion picture The Lizzie McGuire Movie
(2003), in which she portrayed the titular character. She later appeared in feature films including Agent Cody Banks
(2003), Cheaper by the Dozen
(2003), A Cinderella Story
(2004), and Cheaper by the Dozen 2
(2005), which are among the biggest commercial successes of her career. Duff has additionally appeared in numerous television dramas and comedies such as Joan of Arcadia
, Ghost Whisperer
, Law & Order: SVU
and Two and a Half Men
, besides landing an award-winning role in the third season of Gossip Girl
. Other than that, she had also acted in several independent films with praised roles in War, Inc.
(2008), According to Greta
(2009) and Bloodworth
(2011). Besides being a producer for a few of the movies she starred in; According to Greta
and Beauty & the Briefcase
, Duff has served as a voice actress for a number of animated features. In 2014, she co-starred in a pilot for a new sitcom currently titled Younger
.After signing a recording contract with Hollywood Records, Duff released her debut studio album which was also a Christmas album Santa Claus Lane
in 2002. Her second album Metamorphosis
(2003) has been certified triple-platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for exceeding shipments of one million copies. It spawned the singles "So Yesterday" and "Come Clean", the latter being the opening theme for MTV's hit TV series, Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County
. Duff's third record Hilary Duff
(2004) was certified platinum in the USA, despite only having one official single released; "Fly", which took on a rockier edge than her previous works. Similar to her self-titled album, Duff's first compilation album Most Wanted
(2005) was also certified platinum and included the singles "Wake Up" and "Beat of My Heart", where both singles peaked in the top ten in Italy. Her fourth studio album, the electronica-infused record Dignity
(2007), spawned her highest-charting single on the U.S. Billboard
Hot 100, "With Love", which peaked at #24 and was the first of her three consecutive number ones on the Hot Dance Club Play charts. The following year in 2008, Duff released her first greatest hits album Best of Hilary Duff
which subsequently ended her recording contract with Hollywood Records. After taking a five-year musical hiatus to focus on her acting and writing careers, she began working on her fifth studio album in September 2013, which is tentatively scheduled to be released in the fall of 2014. To date, Duff has sold thirteen million albums worldwide.Duff has also ventured into the retail industry. She had the successful clothing line Stuff by Hilary Duff, two exclusive fragrances with Elizabeth Arden, and the limited fashion line Femme for DKNY Jeans. Branching into the literary industry, along with the assistance of author Elise Allen, Duff wrote the novel Elixir
(2010), which became a The New York Times
bestseller; it was followed by the sequels Devoted
(2011) and True
(2013). She has also contributed to several humanitarian causes, including Blessings in a Backpack and the Think Before You Speak Campaign.2000–02: Breakthrough with Lizzie McGuire
and Santa Claus Lane
In March 2000, Duff appeared in the small guest role as a sick child in the medical drama Chicago Hope
right before being cast as one of the children in the pilot episode of the NBC sitcom Daddio.
co-star Michael Chiklis stated, "After working with her the first day, I remember saying to my wife, 'This young girl is gonna be a movie star.' She was completely at ease with herself and comfortable in her own skin." However, prior to the airing of the show, the producers dropped Duff from the cast. Depressed, Duff was reluctant to pursue her acting career further.A week later, she landed the title role of a newly developed Disney Channel children's television series, Lizzie McGuire
after her mother, who had likewise become her manager by this time, urged her to audition. Duff played a clumsy teen who dreams to fit in and be popular. The show made Duff a popular household name, particularly with its target demographic of pre-teens and adolescents. Focusing on its central character, the show's mixed media format stood out from the rest of the Disney Channel's programming of the time and, in essence, became the channel's flagship and definitive show of the early 2000s. The show first aired on the Disney Channel on January 12, 2001, and was a ratings hit that attracted about 2.3 million viewers per episode. However, after Duff fulfilled her 65-episode contract with Lizzie McGuire
, the show ended on February 14, 2004. Though Disney considered expanding the franchise to films and a prime-time television series, those plans failed because Duff's representatives said that she was not being paid enough for the proposed series.Duff's first role in a theatrical motion picture was in Human Nature
(2002) in which she portrays the younger version of a female naturalist, played by Patricia Arquette. The film was showcased first at the Cannes and Sundance film festivals. Duff also starred as a free-spirited girl who struggles in a strict military school in the 2002 Disney Channel television film Cadet Kelly,
which became the network's most watched program in its 19-year history.Duff became interested in pursuing a music career after attending a Radio Disney concert in 2001. She had started vocal lessons before her acting career began; resuming those, she also became one of Andre Recke's clients at Hollywood Records. Duff's music career began with two soundtrack appearances: In 2002, she appeared on the soundtrack to the Lizzie McGuire
series, performing a cover version of Brooke McClymont's "I Can't Wait," which received tremendous success on Radio Disney, and the Walt Disney Records compilation DisneyMania,
performing a cover of "The Tiki Tiki Tiki Room."The same year, she released a holiday album titled Santa Claus Lane
(2002) which was a collection of Christmas songs that included duets with her sister, Lil' Romeo, and Christina Milian. Accompanied by the Disney Channel-only single "Tell Me a Story (About the Night Before)," the album peaked at 154 on the US Billboard
200 album chart and was certified gold. While her songs were hits on Radio Disney, including "Why Not?," and "What Dreams Are Made Of," both of which had been featured in The Lizzie McGuire Movie
(2003), Recke and executives at Buena Vista Music Group envisioned Duff reaching a more mature audience.Duff dated pop singer Aaron Carter on and off between 2001 and 2003 before he met and dated Lindsay Lohan. It was reported that Carter soon left Lohan and went back to dating Duff, starting a feud between the two actresses. After Duff showed up with Chad Michael Murray to the red carpet premiere for Lohan's film Freaky Friday
(2003), Lohan further fueled this feud by appearing at a red carpet premiere for Duff's film Cheaper by the Dozen
(2003). In 2007, it was reported that the two reconciled, with Lohan accepting an invitation to Duff's Dignity
album release party. A spat with Avril Lavigne also made headlines because Lavigne called Duff a "mommy's girl." The two had no public reconciliation.
2003: Metamorphosis, Agent Cody Banks and Cheaper by the Dozen
Duff released her debut album, Metamorphosis,
in 2003. The album received mixed reviews from music critics; some complimented it for being a modern-day bubblegum album, while others considered the album to be a promotional gimmick for Duff's musical career, lacking real substance. Nonetheless, Metamorphosis
reached number one on the Billboard
200 and Canadian Albums Chart and sold over five million copies worldwide by late 2005. Its lead single "So Yesterday," was a top ten hit in several countries despite not impacting in her native United States; its follow-up, "Come Clean," had the same effect and was chosen as the theme song for Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County.
The third single, "Little Voice," was not released in the United States, but it was a minor hit in Australia.Duff further promoted the album with the Metamorphosis Tour that ran from November to December 2003. Most shows that were scheduled in major cities were sold out. Metamorphosis
earned Duff her first Kids' Choice Award for Favorite Female Singer as well as Best New Female Artist at the World Music Awards in 2004. Before embarking on another American tour, titled Most Wanted, which she conducted from July to September 2004, Duff also recorded a cover of The Go-Go's selection "Our Lips Are Sealed," with her sister Haylie, for the original A Cinderella Story
soundtrack.In 2003, Duff received her first major role in a feature film when she was cast alongside Frankie Muniz, playing his love interest in Agent Cody Banks
. The film received positive reviews; Scott Foundas of Variety
magazine labelled Duff's performance "charming," yet thought she was "sidelined with little to do much of the time." The same year, Duff reprised her role as Lizzie McGuire for The Lizzie McGuire Movie.
It received mixed reviews; some slammed her acting skills whilst David Levine from Filmcritic.com
called it "an unabashed promotion of Duff's image." Later that year, Duff played one of the 12 children of Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt in the family film Cheaper by the Dozen,
a remake of the 1950 film, which remains her highest grossing film to date, despite not-so-complimentary reviews of Duff's performance. Slant Magazine
reviewer Nick Schager wrote that Duff "does nothing more than look perky and stylish."Duff also made several guest appearances in television shows which included the role of a makeup salesperson in a 2003 episode of George Lopez;
she later reappeared in the show in 2005 as Kenzie, a feminist poet friend of the character Carmen (Masiela Lusha). In 2003, she also portrayed one of The Shangri-Las opposite her sister Haylie in season two of American Dreams,
while in 2005, she played a classmate and idolizer of the title character in Joan of Arcadia.
2004–06: Hilary Duff, Cheaper by the Dozen 2 and Most Wanted
In July 2004, a 16-year-old Duff began dating Good Charlotte singer Joel Madden, who was then 25 years of age. After a long period of tabloid speculation, Duff's mother Susan announced their relationship in a June 2005 interview for Seventeen
magazine. In November 2006, Duff and Madden broke up. The same year, Duff's parents separated after 22 years of marriage. She wrote about the pain caused by the separation in her songs "Stranger" and "Gypsy Woman" for her fourth studio album, Dignity.
Released on Duff's seventeenth birthday in 2004, her second studio album was the self-titled Hilary Duff.
This time, she was more involved in crafting of the album by co-writing songs, desiring it to be her departure from her young Lizzie McGuire
image. The album has a rockier edge than Metamorphosis
did, which critics received negatively and compared her to Avril Lavigne and Ashlee Simpson. Despite its two singles, "Fly" and "Someone's Watching Over Me," not being major hits, the album debuted at number two on the U.S. Billboard
200 chart, selling 192,000 copies in its first week, and became her second consecutive number one debut in Canada. The self-titled album sold 1.8 million copies in the United States and was certified platinum by the RIAA.In 2005, Duff followed her self-titled album with her first compilation album titled Most Wanted,
which consisted of three new songs, songs from her previous two albums, and remixes. Most Wanted
received mostly negative reviews from critics, who deemed the release as premature, stating that Duff did not have enough material to warrant a compilation. However, new songs "Wake Up" (which was written and composed by Duff's then-boyfriend Joel Madden and his brother Benji, both members of Good Charlotte), "Beat of My Heart" and "Break My Heart" received favorable comments; critics believed that their dance-oriented sound stood out from the rest of the album. Most Wanted
debuted at number one on the Billboard
200, becoming Duff's second number one in the United States, and became her third number one debut in Canada. It sold over two hundred thousand copies within its first week of release, and was certified platinum by the RIAA a month after its release. Duff followed the international success of the album and its singles by embarking on her first worldwide concert tour to support the album. Titled the Still Most Wanted Tour, the tour began in July 2005 and ran through September 2006. In 2006, an Italy-only compilation, 4ever Hilary Duff,
was released alongside an exclusive DVD, due to Italian fans not getting as many of the normal releases of her albums pressed in the country. Rejoining forces with her sister, Duff also recorded a cover version of Madonna's "Material Girl" for the soundtrack to their 2006 movie Material Girls.
In 2004, she starred in the romantic comedy A Cinderella Story
alongside Chad Michael Murray. Reviews of her performance were mostly negative: "her appeal lies precisely in being Hilary Duff," wrote Reel
critic Sarah Chauncy. However, the film went on to become a moderate box office hit, and some critics were impressed by Duff's performance. Later that year, she starred in Raise Your Voice,
her first drama film. While some critics praised her for appearing in a more mature and serious role than her previous films, the film itself was heavily panned and was not successful at the box office. Several reviews were indifferent towards her acting performance and were critical of Duff's vocals, with critics pointing out what appeared to be her digitally enhanced voice. Her roles in the two films combined led to her first Razzie nomination for Worst Actress in 2004.Her subsequent role in The Perfect Man
and the reprisal of her character in the Belles On Their Toes
film remake, Cheaper by the Dozen 2,
both released in 2005, combined to result in her second Razzie nomination for Worst Actress in 2005. The Village Voice's
Matt Singer wrote of the former, in which she co-stars with Heather Locklear and Chris Noth, "Duff plays her standard character--an introverted romantic who falls for a guy whose hunky exterior belies an artistic soul." It was poorly received both critically and commercially. The latter, which was less successful as the first Cheaper by the Dozen,
was panned by critics. "Duff just looks like she'd rather be in a different movie," read a harsh review Mike Clarke wrote for USA Today.
Additionally, the Duff sisters both lent their voices to the computer animated comedy Foodfight!
in late 2005, but the film never had its planned theatrical release. Duff paired with her sister again in the satirical comedy Material Girls
in 2006, but it was unsuccessful both commercially and critically, earning both sisters a shared Razzie nomination for Worst Actress, becoming Hilary's third consecutive nomination in this field in three years. The two were also nominated for Worst Screen Couple.In 2006, Duff was stalked by a 19-year-old Russian immigrant identified as Max and his 50-year-old roommate David Joseph Klein. She filed for restraining orders against the two men, claiming that Max "threatened to kill himself" to get her attention. She also alleged that he threatened to "remove enemies" who stand in his way, including Duff's boyfriend at the time Joel Madden. Max, later identified as Maksim Myaskovskiy, was sentenced to 117 days in prison.
2007–09: Dignity, Best of Hilary Duff and independent films
Duff co-wrote the material for her third studio album Dignity
(2007), along with Kara DioGuardi, who co-produced the album with Rhett Lawrence, Tim & Bob, and Richard Vission. In contrast to the pop rock themes of her prior releases, Dignity
takes on more of a dance and electropop sound and makes use of more instruments. The lyrics reference the events Duff experienced in the years leading to the album's release while the album's songs contain influences of rock and roll and hip hop music. Critical response was mostly positive; while Duff's "weak" singing voice was noted, the album was praised for its songwriting and her new musical direction. Upon release, Dignity
debuted at number three in the US, a lower peak than Duff's previous albums and with lower sales, which Billboard
attributed to the loss of fans during her musical evolution. Despite the relatively poor performance of the album, it produced Duff's highest-peaking US single to date, "With Love" (number 24), which also peaked at number 1 on the Billboard
Hot Dance Club Songs chart, becoming the first of her three consecutive number ones on that chart; her second being "Stranger," the album's third single. Dignity
reached the top ten in several countries, and the RIAA certified it gold in the United States. She embarked on her fourth concert tour, simply titled Dignity, from July 2007 to February 2008, which went around North America, Brazil and Australia. Following this, Duff had sold thirteen million albums worldwide and had performed across the world on four concert tours.A two-part introspective documentary television special Hilary Duff: This Is Now
was produced to chronicle Duff's return to the recording industry. The show took two weeks to film and was shot in both the US and around Europe. It was broadcast on MTV in April 2007. Duff was also the guest star on The Andy Milonakis Show
for its third season premiere in September 2007.Duff was cast in the 2008 political satire War, Inc..
Her role as an oversexed Central Asian pop star garnered praise, despite the film receiving generally negative reviews from critics. Duff recorded two exclusive tracks, "Boom Boom Bang Bang" and "I Want to Blow You Up," for her role as Yonica Babyyeah in the movie. War, Inc.
opened on an extremely limited release in only two theaters across the United States. The film went on to open in a further thirty theaters across the United States. It was second in largest per theater gross. It closed on August 7, 2008, without a wide release, grossing only $580,862 domestically.Duff's most recent release and first greatest hits album was titled Best of Hilary Duff
(2008). Like Most Wanted
(2005), the album features songs from her previous three albums, remixes and two new tracks: "Reach Out" and "Holiday." "Reach Out," which samples Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus," was released in the preceding month of the album's release as its first single. The song became Duff's third number one dance hit in the United States, but the album failed to reach the success of its predecessors. Best of
was her first album not to receive any RIAA certifications, and it peaked at number 125 on the US chart. Duff said she hoped to write a third new song for the release and to have "Holiday" released as a single. Hollywood Records later scrapped these plans, adding to their large list of cancelations which, in turn, led Duff to make the decision to leave the label after six years of service and develop this album to bring a quick end to her contract, which had expected one more album. She announced to MTV
that she would begin work on her new album in December 2008, but it was never developed. In 2009, Duff and Richard Vission contributed on a song titled "Any Other Day" for the What Goes Up
soundtrack.In 2009, she starred in two independent drama films. The first, as the title role of a young suicidal and rebellious teen in According to Greta,
received mixed reviews; Andrew Barker of Variety
magazine criticized Duff's "child star" approach to acting and wanted her to stay away from teen roles. However, Los Angeles Times
critic Robert Abele wrote that her attempt to "transform her bright-eyed wholesomeness into rebellious snark" in Greta
"is a valiant one." The second, as a narcissistic seductress in What Goes Up,
also received mixed reviews. Brian Lowry of Variety
magazine stated that Duff's performance "amounts to a near-adult role" yet labeled her role, and the film in general, "confused."Duff was also meant to star as Bonnie Parker in a 2009 independent remake of Bonnie and Clyde
titled The Story of Bonnie and Clyde.
Her co-star, slated to be appearing as Clyde Barrow, was Kevin Zegers. However, in 2011, it was announced that Duff and Zegers were dropped from the cast due to scheduling conflicts.Despite turning down the lead role of Annie Mills in the television series 90210
in early 2008 as she was more interested in looking for projects outside the teen genre, Duff attained a recurring guest star role in the third season of Gossip Girl.
She played Olivia Burke, a movie star who enrolls in NYU in search of a traditional college experience. In the ninth episode, titled "They Shoot Humphreys, Don't They?", Duff's character ended up in a threesome with Penn Badgley's character Dan and Jessica Szhor's character Vanessa, which led to protests from parent groups. The following year, she won a Teen Choice Award for Best Female Scene Stealer for her role as Olivia Burke; Enid Portugez of the LA Times
also praised her performance by giving a positive review to her involvement in this adult role. She appeared in six episodes of the season. In April that same year, she had guest roles in Ghost Whisperer
and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.
2010–2012: Beauty & the Briefcase, Bloodworth & early return to musical career
In 2010, Duff starred in the ABC Family television film Beauty & the Briefcase
, in which she plays a fashion magazine columnist who writes about her dating struggles in the city. The film had a rating of 2.4 million viewers. The same year she appeared in an episode of the NBC sitcom Community
as Meghan, the leader of a group of mean girls.Duff co-starred in films including Raven Halfacre, the teenage daughter of a promiscuous alcoholic mother, in the 2011 drama film Bloodworth,
of which Los Angeles Times
reviewer Sheri Linden thought she "acquits herself well" despite not warming to the film. The Examiner
also wrote that the "biggest surprise performance [in the film\] probably belongs to Hilary Duff." She also played Shasta O'Neil, a sexy high school senior, in the Polish brothers' comedy Stay Cool
(2011) in which she co-starred with Winona Ryder, Mark Polish, Sean Astin, Chevy Chase, and Jon Cryer to neither much critical nor commercial avail. In 2012, she co-starred in the independent film She Wants Me,
directed by Rob Margolies, as a well-known starlet, Kim Powers, who enters a love triangle.In October 2011, Duff mentioned plans of a possible new album to E! Online.
In January 2012, she confirmed, through her official website and Twitter, that she had begun recording that album. Throughout the recording sessions in 2012, Duff primarily worked with songwriter Ali Tamposi, musicians Matt Squire and Jason Evigan. She also began taking vocal lessons to prepare her return to her musical career.In August 2012, Duff signed a deal with 20th Century Fox to develop a sitcom in which she would star and produce. According to the deal if the 30-minute sitcom failed to work, Duff would be cast in a different television series. This plan however failed to develop. She appeared as a guest judge in Project Runway
in September the same year.
2013–present: Recent television guest roles, fifth studio album & Younger
In early 2013, Duff guest starred in the television shows Raising Hope
and the tenth season finale of Two and a Half Men.
She also lent her voice to an animated film Wings,
together with Jesse McCartney and Josh Duhamel released by an animation company named Simka Entertainment. By July 2013, Duff had already finished filming the independent film Flock of Dudes
, which is slated for a spring 2014 release.In August 2013, in an interview with Idolator.com, Duff stated that the songs recorded in 2012 would not make it to the final version of her upcoming album, because she did not like their sound. She also mentioned that she was interested in making an electronic dance music-driven record. It was confirmed in the interview that Duff had already begun recording brand new material. No official release date for the album had been announced yet.In September 2013, Duff updated her Instagram account, revealing that she was working with record producer Billy Mann for a selection intended for her upcoming album. Mann is well known for his works with a diverse range of artists including P!nk, Celine Dion, Boyzone and Robyn. Based on the caption of Duff's Instagram upload, the current working title of the track is "Better Days", On October 31, 2013, she uploaded another photo to her Instagram account which revealed her working with Mann again. On November 7, 2013, Duff tweeted on her Twitter account that she had co-written a song titled "Outlaw" with songwriter Lindy Robbins and record producer Ian Kirkpatrick. The song was finally recorded after Duff confirmed it through her Twitter account on December 9, 2013.On November 20, 2013, it was announced that Duff would be guest-starring on a Dora the Explorer
special episode, which aired on November 25, 2013. Duff voiced the Ice Witch, in which her character sings and raps.On December 4, 2013, in an interview with Breakfast Television Toronto, Duff confirmed that she already had six songs recorded so far and that they carry an upbeat and happy tune. She stated that the album will have an influence of dance and indie music. She also mentioned that she plans to have the first single released in the spring of 2014, and the album sometime in the fall.On December 15, 2013, Duff confirmed through her Twitter account that she had recorded a song titled "Breathing Room" while she was in New York City. It was also confirmed that Duff is working with her music manager Andre Recke again, who managed her when she was under Hollywood Records.On January 15, 2014, it was announced that Duff signed on to co-star opposite Sutton Foster in a pilot episode for a sitcom titled Younger
, based on a novel by Pamela Redmond Satran. Duff plays Kelsey, an ambitious 20-something who persuades Foster's character to work in a publishing firm. The show will be executive produced by Darren Star, the creator of Sex and the City
, and is set to air on TV Land with filming already wrapped up in February at New York City. The promotional photoshoot was made in the following month.On March 28, 2014, Duff confirmed via her Instagram upload that she had signed a new record deal. However, which record company Duff signed to was not yet revealed.EntrepreneurshipIn addition to having signed with modelling agency IMG Models, Duff has launched two clothing lines. The first, "Stuff by Hilary Duff," was distributed through Target in the US, Kmart in Australia, Zellers in Canada, and Edgars Stores in South Africa from March 2004 onwards. The company later expanded its business into furniture, fragrances and jewelry, which were primarily targeted at the teen and preteen crowd. But by the end of 2008, Duff ceased to have full control of the "Stuff by Hilary Duff" line, and it was officially discontinued as a result.Her second was a collaboration with DKNY Jeans where she co-designed a collection of special pieces. With the objective of designing a clothing line for girls her own age, the collaborative apparel line, titled Femme for DKNY Jeans, debuted in the US in August 2009 and was around for a limited time. A series of three-minute long shorts titled The Chase
were released via her podcast channel on YouTube to promote the brand.Duff has also released her own perfume, titled "With Love... Hilary Duff," which was distributed by the Elizabeth Arden company from September 2006 onward. The perfume was initially sold only in Macy's in the US, but later branched out to Europe, Japan and Canada. "With Love...Hilary Duff" was one of the three best-selling fragrances launched at US department stores in late 2006. A summer version of the perfume, titled "Wrapped with Love," was released in January 2008 while a spring gift set version was released in time for that year's Valentine's Day.
With Simon & Schuster, Duff set up a book-writing deal in which Elise Allen would collaborate with her. Published in October 2010, the first novel to result from her and Allen's collaboration, Elixir
, was subsequently released internationally and become a New York Times
best-seller.The book, aimed at young adults, traces the life of a seventeen-year-old photojournalist searching the world for her father after his disappearance. After fate brings her and an unknown beautiful man who had began to mysteriously feature in her photographs, the pair strike up a love triangle, racing against time to unravel their pasts in order to save their futures. Duff participated in a book tour promoting the book starting in 2010. It covered the USA, Brazil, France and other locations.Following the huge success of Elixir
, its sequel, titled Devoted,
was released in hardcover in October 2011. Devoted
picks up where Elixir
left off and continues the story of the dangerous love triangle. Duff embarked on her second book tour to promote Devoted
. The book tour for Devoted
was carried out during Duff's pregnancy, and only covered the United States.The third and final novel, True
, was released in April 2013. Though True
was not promoted with any book tour, Duff had a book-signing session in LA. It was also promoted on The Ellen DeGeneres Show
.Duff also planned to release a non-fiction book to help children coping with divorce. It was slated for a spring 2012 release, but never materialized.
Duff has involved herself with various philanthropic activities. For natural disasters, she donated $250,000 to help the victims of Hurricane Katrina in addition to donating over 2.5 million meals to Hurricane Katrina victims in southern US in 2005. In August 2006, Duff traveled to a New Orleans elementary school and worked with USA Harvest to distribute meals.She also has helped various youth charities and is a member of Kids with a Cause. Duff has also served on the Advisory Board of the Audrey Hepburn Child Benefit Fund and the Celebrity Council of Kids with a Cause. October 2008 saw Duff starring in a public service announcement for The Think Before You Speak Campaign by Ad Council and GLSEN to prevent youth from using anti-LGBT vocabulary, such as the phrase "That's So Gay." In July 2009, Duff was named as a Youth Ambassador to the children of the Colombian capital, Bogotá. As a Youth Ambassador, she spent five days in the country, distributing backpacks filled with food to needy children.A strong animal rights supporter, Duff has commented, when asked what she would do if not a celebrity, "I always wanted to be a veterinarian when I was younger, but then I figured out that animals actually die there, so that was not the job for me. Definitely something with kids or animals or something like that."In 2012, a few months after giving birth to her son, Duff was actively involved in the Johnson's Baby Cares campaign. The campaign included activities such as sending 'care kits' and 'care cards' to new mothers across the US as a motivation. It also raises funds for children and poor families together with Save The Children. Duff had also promoted the campaign on numerous television talk shows.In September 2013, Duff was involved with the Stomp Out Bullying campaign. Duff starred in a short public service announcement and it was released to YouTube on September 5, 2013.Towards the start of the Christmas shopping season in November 2013, Duff teamed up with Duracell in Canada for a campaign especially for kids in hospitals. The campaign called Powering Holiday Smiles donated 20,000 batteries to hospitals across Canada in order to power lifesaving medical devices and the thousands of playroom toys and games that children and their families will be using the holiday season of 2013 and beyond. The campaign encourages Canadians to buy Duracell Quantum AA-16 batteries, in which for every packet sold, one dollar will be donated to the Children's Miracle Network. The campaign began on November 22 and commenced on December 27, 2013. In order to promote the campaign, Duff paid a visit to The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario to hand out brand new toys supplied by Hasbro. She has discussed the campaign on Breakfast Television Toronto, a radio show and in numerous magazine interviews.
Public image and legacy
Following her success from her Lizzie McGuire
days, Richard Huff of the New York Daily News
called Duff "a 2002 version of Annette Funicello" yet admitted that the character of Lizzie McGuire was both a blessing and burden for her. In 2003, Huff stated that Duff's public image is "tied" to Lizzie McGuire. In 2005, Katie Long from the Centre of Parent/Youth Understanding wrote an analysis about Duff and her suitability as an idol for young teens. Duff "is not like Britney Spears or Christina Aguilera...yet" who supposedly use their sex appeal to sell albums and "is someone that adolescent girls can relate to." The writer also stated that because Duff is all over the media, "how can [fans\] not love her?" However, while Duff is a "positive role model" who has a "close relationship" with her family, the writer acknowledged that as Duff matures, "her looks and message will most likely mature as well."Duff's debut album Metamorphosis
was credited with helping to significantly raise the industry and corporate profile and marketplace presence of Hollywood Records, which Geoff Mayfield, charts director and senior analyst for Billboard
magazine, said "[have\] had some top albums before with the Tarzan
movie soundtrack in 2000, but not like this Hilary Duff album". The San Fernando Valley Business Journal
wrote that the album was "giving Hollywood Records a needed shot in the arm" after a decline in CD sales during the previous two years had forced the label to reduce costs and alter its operation. Hilliard Lyons analyst Jeffrey Thomison cited Metamorphosis
as a reflection of Disney's ability to develop "great synergy between their cable, film and music segments", particularly after The Lizzie McGuire Movie
indicated that Duff's television fanbase could be migrated to film — Geoff Mayfield said on the subject, "All things being equal, if this album were done by anybody else, it would not be a hit". Metamorphosis
made Duff the first "breakout artist" for Hollywood Records in its ten-year history, and its success coincided with that of albums by other artists on the label, such as Rascal Flatts and Josh Kelley, and of soundtracks for films such as The Cheetah Girls
, Freaky Friday
and The Lizzie McGuire Movie
. Later, partly as a result of Metamorphosis
, Hollywood Records used the Disney Channel to launch brands such as High School Musical
and Hannah Montana
, and artists such as Aly & AJ, The Cheetah Girls, Hannah Montana
star Miley Cyrus, Raven-Symoné, Vanessa Hudgens and Jesse McCartney.Over the years, she has striven to distance herself from her wholesome Disney image, which has included a revamp of her image and sound with the release of Dignity
(2007). Since then, she has performed in more mature roles in films and appeared in more provocative photo shoots. In 2007, she graced the covers of Us Weekly
in a bikini whilst her appearance on the cover of Maxim
was accompanied by the declaration that she had gone "from the queen of teen to breakout sex symbol." Following this, Duff placed at #23 on the annual Hot 100 Women list compiled by Maxim.
She has remained on the list ever since in addition to being regularly listed on the annual FHM
list of the 100 Sexiest Women (she peaked at #8 in 2008). The Associated Press wrote that this sudden provocativeness was representative of "a clear move [on Duff's part\] to put her Lizzie McGuire past behind her," and that more provocative imaging of her would help her singles to garner mainstream radio play: "Ultimately, nature, time and genetics may help Duff in a way Disney, despite all its might, cannot." However, despite "the fact that she is grown up," Duff "has managed to maintain her sweet persona," wrote Young Hollywood.
In a June 2006 interview with Elle
magazine, Duff was quoted as saying: "...(virginity) is definitely something I like about myself. It doesn't mean I haven't thought about sex, because everyone I know has had it and you want to fit in." Duff later told MuchMusic that she did not say the quotes attributed to her in the article; the subject was "definitely not something that I would talk about..." She denied the quotes again in a 2008 interview with Maxim
magazine.Just a few months after entering motherhood in March 2012, Duff was teased by Internet users about her post-delivery body. This was sparked when photos of Duff relaxing in a bikini, taken by paparazzi, surfaced on the web. This led Duff to give out a statement in an interview with In Touch Weekly, saying "I don't care what people say, say it to my face!". She further stated that her body was not in the state she would want it to be in but she did not feel stressed out. Duff explained that she pairs up spin classes and private training to shed her weight. However, Duff stated that with the birth of her son, she learned to appreciate what her body could do, in an interview with Parade.com. In the same interview too, Duff said that the birth of her son has strengthened her relationship with her husband. A year later in 2013, Duff revealed that it took her a whole year for her to lose her post-pregnancy weight. She said that she is finally comfortable with her body and revealed that she lost nearly 50 pounds since the birth of her son. Duff stated that she revamped her diet and hired a personal trainer to train her in boxing, which was one of the ways she lost her weight other than piloxing and spin cycling. Duff's slow but healthy method in shedding off her post-pregnancy weight was praised by health experts and was looked up by actress Tia Mowry, who cited Duff as her idol in taking up a healthy and safer way to lose the excess weight gained during pregnancy.After not being active for nearly seven years in the musical industry, Duff stated that she would not return with a provocative image, unlike most child stars or celebrities nowadays. Duff said that she would stay true to the public and remain as an authentic person. She added, "Besides if everyone's doing the same thing then being provocative isn't provocative anymore." Duff also said that she was glad to take a big break off her career and settle down to start a family, saying "I stayed away for three and a half years - I met my husband, I got married. Taking the time to learn who I am and who I want to be really helped. Now I'm ready to jump back in."Duff has been a major influence on many young female stars including Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, Demi Lovato, and Keke Palmer.
In 2007, Duff began dating Canadian NHL player Mike Comrie. Duff and Comrie announced their engagement in February 2010, and married on August 14, 2010 in Santa Barbara, California. Duff gave birth to their son Luca Cruz Comrie on March 20, 2012.Duff and Comrie announced on January 10, 2014 that they had separated but would continue to co-parent their son.