The fundamental role played by actin in the regulation of eukaryotic cell maintenance and motility renders it a primary target for small-molecule intervention. In this arena, a class of potent cytotoxic cyclodepsipeptide natural products has emerged over the last quarter-century to stimulate the fields of biology and chemistry with their unique actin-stabilizing properties and complex peptide-polyketide hybrid structures. Despite considerable research effort, a structural basis for the activity of these secondary metabolites remains elusive, not least for the lack of high-resolution structural data and a reliable synthetic route to diverse compound libraries. In response to this, an efficient solid-phase approach has been developed and successfully applied to the total synthesis of jasplakinolide and chondramide C and diverse analogues. The key macrocylization step was realized using ruthenium-catalyzed ring-closing metathesis (RCM) that in the course of a library synthesis produced discernible trends in metathesis reactivity and E/Z-selectivity. After optimization, the RCM step could be operated under mild conditions, a result that promises to facilitate the synthesis of more extensive analogue libraries for structure-function studies. The growth inhibitory effects of the synthesized compounds were quantified and structure-activity correlations established which appear to be in good alignment with relevant biological data from natural products. In this way a number of potent unnatural and simplified analogues have been found. Furthermore, potentially important stereochemical and structural components of a common pharmacophore have been identified and rationalized using molecular modeling. These data will guide in-depth mode-of-action studies, especially into the relationship between the cytotoxicity of these compounds and their actin-perturbing properties, and should inform the future design of simplified and functionalized actin stabilizers as well.