Olivia Munn was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Her mother, Kimberly Schmid, lived in Vietnam, and is of Chinese ancestry, while her father, Winston Barrett Munn, is from a family with deep roots in the American South. Olivia's parents divorced when she was two years old, and she was raised by her mother and stepfather, a member of the United States Air Force. Although the family departed Oklahoma and resided in many locations, she was mainly raised in Tokyo, Japan. During this time, she appeared in a number of local theater productions and later became a model in the Japanese fashion industry.
When the family eventually returned to the United States, Olivia moved to Los Angeles to pursue her dream of becoming an actress. After a few small roles, her career took a very promising turn when she landed the role of Mily Acuna on the Hawaii-lensed TV series Beyond the Break (2006) and the role of Rob Schneider's receptionist in Big Stan (2007). She hosts The Daily Nut and the Formula D podcasts on G4.