Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen Get Own Museum After Anorexia & Lyme Disease Battles: Why Twins Exited ‘Fuller House’

When news spread that the Full House reboot had been given the green light by Netflix, fans hoped that Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen would reprise their role as Michelle Tanner. But the Olsen twins opted out of the show, titled Fuller House, for several reasons, according to People.

After playing Michelle since they were 9-months-old, Mary-Kate and Ashley had two reasons: Timing and the fact that Ashley wasn’t up for returning to her acting career.

“Ashley said, ‘I have not been in front of a camera since I was 17, and I don’t feel comfortable acting,'” revealed executive producer Bob Boyett. “Mary-Kate said, It would have to be me because Ash doesn’t want to do it. But the timing is so bad for us.”

Bob Saget and Ashley Olsen reunite, although she opted out of the "Full House" reboot.
Bob Saget and Ashley Olsen reunite, although she opted out of the "Full House" reboot. [Photo by Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images for Scleroderma Research Foundation]

In their busy lives designing clothes for The Row and Elizabeth and James, sticking with their style career took priority over doing the spinoff. Fuller House used that decision from the Olsen twins by referring to the character of Michelle as preoccupied with her fashion empire.

But while the Fuller House characters were thought by some to be throwing shade, a very different attitude about Mary-Kate and Ashley is evident in a new move to create a museum for the twins.

The group consists of Matt and Viviana, New York City comedians, who are joining Chicago artist Laura Collins to create the “The Olsen Twins Hiding From the Paparazzi” exhibit, reported E! News.

The qualifications of the comedians include their role as creators of the THNK1994 (Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan) museum. As to whether the Olsens might actually appear, one of the comedians hopes that they would stay true to the title of the exhibit.

“I would hope they’d come in disguises,” pointed out Viviana.

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen just may get their own dedicated museum.
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen just may get their own dedicated museum. [Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Variety]

If you’re thinking that Mary-Kate and Ashley have been noticeably absent from the celebrity scene in recent years with the exception of their appearances for their fashion lines, there are several reasons.

Ashley reportedly has been battling Lyme disease, according to a source cited by Fox News.

That caused Ashley to step back from her work to take care of her body.

“She was diagnosed in the very late stages so early detection measures weren’t options for her,” shared the insider. “She’s really going through it.”

Olsen developed Lyme disease several years ago, revealed Radar Online, citing a source that revealed how it has impacted her lifestyle.

“Her symptoms have gotten worse. She’s had to take a step back from her business. She used to be in the office all the time, but lately she’s often just not well, so she rests a lot at home. She’s really having a difficult time.”

And while Ashley now is coping with Lyme disease, her twin, Mary-Kate, struggled with anorexia in a parallel situation requiring her to step back from her career to care for her health.

Refusing to talk directly about her eating disorder, Olsen reflected on her belief that everyone suffers through challenges, reported New York Magazine.

Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen have become stayed together through tough times.
Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen have become stayed together through tough times. [Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images]

“I think it’s important that what anybody goes through — and I’m not saying that it’s true or not true — you realize it’s part of growing up,” said Mary-Kate.

“Everybody is going to go through hard times. It’s a part of life. I think the hardest part to get to is that point of asking for help or reaching out to other people and being honest with yourself. I do not want to go through my life with my eyes shut. And I don’t want to go through it with a closed mind. I want to be aware of things. And I’d rather know than not know.”

However, People magazine reported that Olsen at one point did enter a facility to be treated for an eating disorder.

“This is a challenge that Mary-Kate has made a decision to face,” said her rep Michael Pagnotta at the time. “This is a challenge she will meet.”

As for whether the Olsen twins, now 29, might appear during the second season of Fuller House, creator Jeff Franklin is keeping the door open, he told E! News.

“I am still hopeful that Mary-Kate or Ashley or both of them will come back and be a part of it, even if it’s just for an hour. We miss that. Everybody does feel that hole in the family,” said Franklin.

[Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images]