By DERGA CHEW-BOSE
With the New York Film Festival coming to a close and awards season speculation beginning to rev up, we're focusing our attention on a group of up-and-coming actors, some already more familiar than others, who've garnered attention and critical acclaim over the last year. Whether choosing unlikely roles or proving their acting chops opposite legendary screen names, these 10 actors on our shortlist of 2014 break-outs.
After a series of false starts -- NBC's 1600 Penn and the short-lived Friends with Benefits -- André Holland has found his sweet spot, which for now, might be appearing in period pieces. Last year, Holland portrayed noted sportswriter Wendell Smith in 42, the Jackie Robinson biopic, and this year, the Alabama-born actor is wowing audiences as Dr. Algernon Edwards, a pioneering black surgeon in Steven Soderbergh's The Knick. Of this character, whose arc on the show has become one of its most riveting facets, Holland says in an interview in The Shadow League, "He doesn't really fit in with the black community. They don't understand him, and he doesn't really fit in at work...He's kind of caught somewhere in between and I was really interested in what being in that pressure cooker would do to a person." Up next is a role in Selma, Ava DuVernay's follow-up to Middle of Nowhere, which is set for release on Christmas Day. The Oprah-produced film tells the story of Martin Luther King Jr.'s historic march from Selma, Alabama to the state capital in Montgomery in March of 1965 and Holland plays Andrew Young, the former mayor of Atlanta, a longtime friend and confidant to MLK Jr., and an integral player in the struggle to pass the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Despite initial dissuasion from her father about working in Hollywood (her dad happens to be Bono), Eve Hewson is quickly establishing herself as an actress that should be on everyone's radar. In 2011, Hewson's breakout performance in Paolo Sorrentino's This Must Be The Place proved she could hold her own opposite such heavyweights as Sean Penn and Frances McDormand. Two years later, she played opposite James Gandolifini in what would be his last role, nailing the part of a jaded, college-bound LA teen in Nicole Holofcener's 2013 dramedy, Enough Said. And now the Dublin-born 23-year-old is receiving acclaim as Nurse Lucy Elkins in Steven Soderbergh's turn of the century medical drama, The Knick, starring opposite Clive Owen while also shooting another Steven's project -- this time it's Spielberg's -- in the Tom Hanks-helmed 1960s Cold War saga, St. James Place. With her Emily Blunt-type proficiency (and similarly beguiling blue-grey stare) in both period pieces and contemporary comedies, Hewson has a rare mix of serious Old Hollywood glamor -- a distinctly Bacall smirk comes to mind -- and cool-girl nonchalance. Case in point? The actress recently revealed to Jimmy Fallon how at age 11, she and a friend snooped inside her father's office and found his top secret rolodex of world famous friends. Who did she prank call? Justin Timberlake, of course.
In 2012, Emayatzy Corinealdi (pronounced Emma-yahtzee Core-nal-dee) earned her first Gotham Award for Breakthrough Performance in Ava DuVernay's Middle of Nowhere, where Corinealdi portrayed Ruby, an aspiring doctor coming to terms with her husband's eight-year prison sentence. Praising her performance, The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the actress "projects enough intelligence and backbone to make us believe a character who might've been bothersomely perfect in another actress' hands." Since then, the LA-based actress has wrapped production on The Invitation, Karyn Kusama's follow-up to Jennifer's Body, along with Don Cheadle's highly anticipated Miles Davis biopic, Miles Ahead, where she has replaced Zoe Saldana as Davis' wife, Frances Taylor.
Born in South Carolina, Manish Dayal began his career doing commercials before decamping to LA and getting cast on The CW's 90210 reboot and the short-lived NBC series Outsourced. But it's his starring role in The Hundred-Foot Journey, which was produced by none other than Oprah and Steven Spielberg, which has made Hollywood -- and Buzzfeed -- start really paying attention.
PSA: Get to know Greta Lee, and quick. The 31-year-old actress who played the scene-stealing trust fund gallerina, Soojin, on Girls, a drunk chef on Inside Amy Schumer, and 'Homeless Heidi' on the much-adored web series, High Maintenance, has spent the last year making a name for herself as a funny woman with industry-growing cred and, just as important, admirers in high places. Amy Poehler cast Lee in the Natasha Lyonne-helmed pilot Old Soul -- she'll also be teaming up with Poehler in The Nest, also starring Tina Fey and Maya Rudolph -- and the actress is appearing in Noah Baumbach's While We're Young and the Adam Sandler-led flick, The Cobbler. Also a whipsmart writer, Lee recently penned a piece for Elle titled, "Why I'm Glad Hollywood Is Skipping The Stoner Chick Genre."
OP: Greta Lee also just booked a recurring role on New Girl.
Source: Paper Magazine
Why yes, this is an excuse to get you all talking about The Knick because Andre and Eve are fabulous. But everyone else on this list is pretty great too, with some overlap from Variety's list.