When Melrose Place first began airing in 1992, it was originally conceived as a tamer spinoff to complement Beverly Hills 90210. The producers thought it would be nice for each episode to be a self-contained drama, a formula they ran with until it proved to be a disastrous model. From love triangles to love squares to people coming back from the dead, the show had all of the drama of a soap opera, while airing in a primetime slot. The twists and turns that the storyline took over the years were always something out of left field, and yet its popularity never suffered.
Josie Bissett As Jane Andrews – Then
Even more than 25 years after its debut, Melrose Place still holds a hallowed place in the pantheon of nighttime soap operas. Though it wasn’t intended as such, by the second season, there was no question about what kind of drama it was.
Many of its stars were catapulted to fame by the show, such as Josie Bissett. Much of Josie Bissett’s time as Jane Andrews was characterized by her rocky and drama-filled relationship with her husband, Michael Mancini.
Josie Bissett – Now
Bissett may still be best known for her seven-year stint on Melrose Place, but she hasn’t let that slow her career down. She transitioned from being on a primetime drama series geared towards adults to one geared towards teens in 2008 when she signed on to the ABC Family show, Secret Life of the American Teenager.
Since the series wrapped in 2013, Bissett appeared in a series of TV movies, before beginning to appear as AJ in the series, When Calls the Heart.
Doug Savant As Matt Fielding – Then
In an environment that seems to push people towards villainy, Matt Fielding managed to stay steady in the role of the good guy, which is no surprise for a social worker. However, his inquisitive nature often pulled him towards the drama of others, given that he was never one to shirk from unraveling a good mystery.
Matt was also a vehicle for the show to tackle many tough issues that weren’t often explored on television in the early 1990s.
Doug Savant – Now
After Melrose Place ended, Savant was ready to move into the big time, both with movies and with meatier TV roles. After a short arc on the drama 24, Savant began an extended run in yet another show filled with intrigue as Tom Scavo on Desperate Housewives, which he starred in for the entirety of its run.
Since then, Savant has had a series of guest roles in a number of shows, including his most recent appearance in NCIS: New Orleans.
Kelly Rutherford As Kimberly Shaw – Then
When Kelly Rutherford was introduced to the show, she was a pretty face that Kimberly Shaw had paid to help save their marriage. As with any relationship on the show, such good intentions wouldn’t go uncomplicated, and Megan Lewis quickly found herself involved in a love triangle.
Nothing was ever simple on Melrose Place, however, and Megan would find herself in an ongoing series of romantic entanglements throughout the rest of the time she performed on the show.
Kelly Rutherford – Now
Kelly Rutherford’s time on Melrose Place kick-started an illustrious television career, which would include long arcs on The District, Threat Matrix, and E-Ring, but it was her role as Lily van der Woodsen in Gossip Girl that put Rutherford on the map with a new generation of TV viewers.
In addition to her TV work, Rutherford was involved in a highly publicized custody battle that raged back and forth over the course of three years between 2012 and 2015.
Thomas Calabro As Michael Mancini – Then
Playing the doctor, Michael Mancini, Thomas Calabro became one of the most central characters throughout Melrose Place’s run. From the earliest episodes, he underwent a transformation from someone who was relatively rule-conscious, to someone who couldn’t help but follow all of his basest impulses.
This led him to an endless series of romantic entanglements with what some might call all of the women who found themselves even passing through the area of Melrose Place throughout the series.
Thomas Calabro – Now
When Melrose Place wrapped after seven years on the air, Calabro was riding high, having been the only cast member to be a series regular for the entirety of the run. He would go on to star in a series of TV movies in the ensuing years, before eventually returning to the short-lived reboot of Melrose Place in 2009.
Calabro continued his string of guest roles in many popular TV shows but returned to soap opera life in 2015 when he joined The Bay for two years.
Lisa Rinna As Taylor McBride – Then
Lisa Rinna as Taylor McBride may have only joined the cast of Melrose Place in the fifth season, but the impact her character had on the storyline afterward was significant.
Taylor quickly ingratiates herself with her older sister’s ex-husband, despite already being married to someone else, just like many of the other characters on the show. There was no shortage of drama in Taylor’s life, from the moment she moved to Los Angeles with her husband until the moment she left.
Lisa Rinna – Now
When Lisa Rinna came to Melrose Place, she was no stranger to the style of soap operas, having performed on Days of Our Lives since 1992. During her many breaks from the long-running, daytime drama, Rinna has found the time to appear in a whole host of TV movies and feature films.
In 2004, she made several guest appearances on Veronica Mars. Though Lisa’s guest roles have been plenty, she has been back to focusing on Days of Our Lives recently.
Andrew Shue As Billy Campbell – Then
Billy Campbell might not have been on the same level as Dr. Michael Mancini, but he still found most of his storyline driven by his romantic attachments. Campbell at one time wanted to be a writer, but he ended up settling with a job at a magazine before moving into advertising.
Campbell was easily manipulated by both Amanda Woodward and his eventual wife, Brooke Armstrong. His relationships were often characterized by instability, especially because of the women’s scheming.
Andrew Shue – Now
Melrose Place was Andrew Shue’s breakout role, but it would also prove to be the biggest one he would have throughout his acting career.
Though he left the show only at the end of its run in 1998, he wouldn’t return to acting again until 2007, when he appeared in the film Gracie, which was produced in part by his sister and was also somewhat based on her life. Shue has otherwise been focused on running his website, CafeMom, as well as his non-profit, Do Something.
Laura Leighton As Sydney Andrews – Then
Jane Andrews’ younger sister, Sydney was an often unpredictable character who would undergo one of the biggest transformations throughout the course of the show.
It was these changes in demeanor that characterized Sydney’s erratic behavior, as the audience would never know what would become Sydney’s M.O next. She would go from being a constant antagonist to a source of comedy that later seasons of the show would frequently mine. In the end, though, it was all about Sydney’s romances.
Laura Leighton – Now
Laura Leighton found more than just a career when she signed on to star in Melrose Place during the first season. She would go on to marry her co-star, Doug Savant, in real life during the show’s seven-year run.
After leaving Melrose Place, she enjoyed a short run on its sister show, Beverly Hills 90210. In addition to bringing Sydney back to the short-lived Melrose revival, Leighton would begin appearing on Pretty Little Liars in 2010 until the show ended in 2017.
Grant Show As Jake Hanson- Then
If it weren’t for Grant Show’s character, Jake Hanson, there may never have been a Melrose Place to begin with. Though he was only in several episodes of Beverly Hills 90210, his main purpose in that drama was to provide fodder for the spinoff that would become Melrose Place.
Unlike many of his other comrades, Hanson came from a working-class background and had been in construction since before the show began, though most of his friends enjoying white-collar careers.
Grant Show – Now
At this point in his career, Grant Show is an old hat at the soap opera formula. Despite his luck with this distinct form of drama, he has also been fortunate to enjoy long arcs on a number of well-regarded TV series including Private Practice, Accidentally On Purpose, and Big Love.
From 2013 until 2016, Show portrayed the character of Spence Westmore on the TV series Devious Maids. Since 2017, however, Show has been working on the long-running soap opera, Dynasty.
Courtney Thorne-Smith As Alison Parker – Then
Alison Parker was brought onto the series from the start, as she was looking to move into Melrose Place, but needed a roommate, whom she would find in Billy Campbell.
The two wouldn’t stay platonic roommates for very long, however, as Alison was impressed by the way Billy went out of his way to protect her. Given the nature of Melrose Place, which enjoyed throwing constant twists at its characters, even out of the blue, their relationship would never be straightforward.
Courtney Thorne-Smith – Now
When Thorne-Smith left Melrose Place in 1997, unlike many of her costars, Thorne-Smith was more interested in pursuing a career in sitcoms, rather than remaining in the dramatic world of the soap opera.
She played Georgia Thomas in Ally McBeal from 1997 until 2002 before moving on to According to Jim, which began its run in 2001. From 2010 to 2015, she was a regular part of Two and a Half Men, portraying Lindsey Mackelroy until the show’s end. Most recently she was seen in Fresh Off the Boat.
Jack Wagner As Dr. Peter Burns – Then
If you had any illusions that Dr. Peter Burns was going to be a good guy, you probably hadn’t watched very many soap operas.
While he started off in the role of a nice guy, the moment he needed to begin to turn a situation to his advantage, his behavior became decidedly villainous, even if he was acting against one of the biggest villains in the show. Like many of the other characters, it would eventually be revealed just how much Peter was hiding.
Jack Wagner – Now
Jack Wagner is one of those veteran soap opera stars that has had such a significant presence in so many shows, you aren’t even sure which one made him famous in the first place.
Wagner’s first big break came in General Hospital all the way back in 1983 when he first started appearing as Frisco Jones. By 2003, Wagner had taken on a role in The Bold and the Beautiful, where he enjoyed a run as Dominick Marone until 2012. He currently stars in When Calls the Heart.
Daphne Zuniga As Jo Reynolds – Then
Jo Reynolds came aboard Melrose Place in the early episodes of the show, as she quickly developed a relationship with Jake Hanson. Jake was one of the few men in Jo’s life who treated her well, having suffered from terrible boyfriend syndrome for many years.
Even so, Jo would often find her past returning to bite her in the back, no matter how much she tried to take the stable route. In the end, Jo found a love that took her out of LA.
Daphne Zuniga – Now
Daphne Zuniga has enjoyed one of the most varied careers of all of her co-stars from Melrose Place. After leaving the show, Zuniga was ready to show her chops in other formulas, which included guest starring on many of the most popular shows of the day.
She was a regular part of the latter years of One Tree Hill, playing Victoria Davis from 2008 until 2012. Zuniga was most recently seen in the feature film Beyond Paradise, which was released this year.
Rob Estes As Kyle McBride – Then
Try as he might to do the right thing, the temptations and intrigue that were a constant presence at Melrose Place proved too much even for a former Marine like Kyle McBride. Though he entered the show with his wife Taylor by his side, that situation, like any other romance on the show, was bound to falter.
Unlike many of the other characters on the series, Kyle would eventually come through his many trials and find happiness.
Rob Estes – Now
Rob Estes may not have joined the show in the first season, but he would not be so easily disposed of and lasted until the series wrapped in 1999. His next big project was Suddenly Susan, where he played Oliver Browne for a year.
In 2008, he would go on to join the cast of the new 90210, which he appeared in until 2010. These days you can find Rob Estes appearing in the series Famous in Love, where he portrays Steve, and the film I’ll Be Watching.
Kristin Davis As Brooke Armstrong – Then
When Brooke Armstrong joined the advertising agency that several characters worked for on Melrose Place, no one suspected the kind of subterfuge Brooke would later engage in.
Though she charmed her coworkers at first, in the end, she proved to be no more moral than any of the other characters who appeared on the show. Brooke also had the advantage of coming from a rich and powerful family, which gave her a leg up over the others and frequently caused her to look down on them
Kristin Davis – Now
If Melrose Place was Kristin Davis’s break out role, it was Sex and the City, where Davis played Charlotte York from 1998 until 2004, that really put Davis on the map. She would return to the role for both of the feature films that were inspired by the hit TV show in 2008 and 2010.
Since then, however, Davis has slowed down her acting work somewhat. In 2014, she starred in Bad Teacher, while her most recent acting appearance was in the 2016 TV movie, A Heavenly Christmas.
Jamie Luner As Lexi Sterling – Then
Unbeknownst to viewers, Lexi Sterling had a long history with many of the most troublesome members of Melrose Place that began long before the events of the series.
She was already divorced when she made her debut on the show, but as with any soap opera, that didn’t mean she would stay separated from her ex-husband, especially when the results were advantageous for her. Lexi too would not be immune from the love triangles that plagued the other residents.
Jamie Luner – Now
Though Jaime Luner was only part of Melrose Place in the final two seasons, she had a serious impact on the events of the show during that time. She followed up on her success with the series Profiler, before moving on to 10-8: Officers on Duty from 2003 to 2004.
She briefly made a return to soap operas when she joined the cast of All My Children in its final seasons. Most recently, Luner starred in the series Murder in the First.
David Charvet As Craig Field- Then
Craig Field burst onto the scene in the fifth season as an ambitious advertising executive joining the D&D team. It wouldn’t be long before Craig decided to set off on his own in an attempt to ruin D&D by opening an advertising firm of his own.
The move didn’t bode well for either of his relationships, first with Amanda Woodward, and then with Sydney Andrews. In the end, it was Sydney who would ultimately win his heart and cause his downfall.
David Charvet – Now
By the time David Charvet signed on to Melrose Place, he was already a massive star due to his work on Baywatch. Melrose would, therefore, be a major change for the actor.
After leaving the show, Charvet decided to return to his home country, France, in order to pursue a music career that was waiting for his return. He starred in a few later acting projects, the last one being the 2013 film, Prisoners of the Sun.
Brooke Langton As Samantha Reilly – Then
When Samantha Reilly first appeared in the final episode of season four, it seemed like she was only there as an audience proxy who marveled at the bizarre events that were constantly occurring all around her.
Samantha may have tried hard to escape the turmoil that would soon envelop her, as it did to everyone who moved into the apartment complex, but she was quickly sucked into the whirlpool, which would change her life permanently for the worse.
Brooke Langton – Now
Brooke Langton left Melrose Place for the show The Net, which would only last for one season. In 2007, Langton would find success with a role on the hit show, Friday Night Lights.
At the same time, she was also appearing in Life, where she played Constance Griffiths. Since her arcs ended on both of those shows, Langton has continued to enjoy a prolific career with an increasing number of roles in feature films, such as 2018’s Shifting Gears.
Linden Ashby As Dr. Brett Cooper – Then
It was clear from his very first scene that Dr. Brett Cooper was there to lend an air of prestige. As a surgeon, he certainly enjoyed a professional reputation that went above and beyond the other doctors to appear on the show.
However, navigating an intense career wouldn’t stop him from playing along with the constant drama that plagued Melrose Place. Brett’s actions would eventually sink so low that he chose to skip out of town rather than face the repercussions.
Linden Ashby – Now
Linden Ashby would remain a presence on Melrose Place for five years until he departed for bigger and better things. Towards the end of his run, he also began sharing the spotlight with the series, Spy Game, where he would last one season.
Beginning in 2009 and 2013, Linden made a number of guest appearances in the TV drama Army Wives. He would then move on to the show Teen Wolf, which began running in 2011. Most recently, he appeared in A Daughter’s Revenge.
Marcia Cross As Kimberly Shaw – Then
Kimberly Shaw was perhaps one of the most outrageous characters on a show built around which neighbor could be the most ridiculous.
Kimberly’s behavior was often erratic, which wasn’t out of the ordinary for many of the characters on the show, but at least Kimberly’s behavior was somewhat explained by a car accident she was in early in the series. As out of the box as her storylines often were, Kimberly often fell victim to medical problems as well.
Marcia Cross – Now
If Marcia Cross seems to bring a gravitas to every role she plays, no matter how wacky, it’s likely because the actress has the advantage of being a Juilliard graduate. Her best-known role would become her longtime portrayal of Bree Van De Kamp on Desperate Housewives, which wrapped in 2012 after eight years on the air.
In 2015, Cross began work on the series, Quantico, where she played Claire Haas until 2017. These days, Cross is gracing our screens in the show Youth and Consequences.
Denise Richards As Brandi Carson – Then
In the earliest days of her career, Denise Richards joined the cast of Melrose Place for a several episode arc that revolved around her playing a beauty pageant contestant who was determined to do anything it took to win, which included bribing the judges in some unsavory ways for a teenager.
Brandi Carson likely learned her ambition from her mother, who pushed her into the tryst with a much older Michael Mancini, before she tried to sue him for his actions.
Denise Richards – Now
Denise Richards would go on to become best friends with her costar, Heather Locklear, though the two would eventually find themselves at odds in some real-life soap opera drama that revolved around their respective exes, Charlie Sheen and Richie Sambora.
The A-list actress has been busy since she appeared on Melrose Place with an exceptional series of credits to her name. She has a number of feature films in the works this year, having already released The Toybox.
Heather Locklear As Amanda Woodward – Then
Melrose Place may have been an ensemble cast, but nearly everyone involved in the show would agree that it was Heather Locklear as Amanda Woodward who saved the show from near disaster.
Called one of the best female villains in TV history, Amanda Woodward still holds a legendary place in the pantheon, even 20 years after she left the show. Always scheming, Amanda was sure to look out for herself first, never hesitating to bulldoze those who got in her way.
Heather Locklear – Now
Heather Locklear may have been riding high when she left Melrose Place, but she would soon find that the next decade had some difficult surprises in store. Locklear seemed to have been sent into a downward spiral after her 2006 divorce from Richie Sambora.
Despite the personal difficulties she’s faced, Locklear is pushing forward with her career. Her last acting role came between 2016 to 2017 when she appeared in the show Too Close to Home as the President’s wife, First Lady Katelynn Christian.