Some actors are in the business for years before they get noticed, while others become household names overnight. This past year Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who has been in the business since childhood, emerged as a prominent leading man and Ben Affleck, who lost some serious momentum, reemerged victorious with “Argo.” Despite the ever-changing nature of the Hollywood spotlight, here are a few actors who I think everyone should keep an eye on.
Joel Edgerton was more known for television than film, but then he made his big screen debut in “Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones” as Owen Lars AKA Uncle Owen. After that small role, Edgerton began to show his presence with a starring role in the film “Warrior” alongside Tom Hardy and more recently in the Oscar nominated film “Zero Dark Thirty.” He has a more prominent role in the upcoming film “The Great Gatsby” alongside Leonardo DiCaprio and if this film does well, I can see Joel Edgerton continuing his rise.
Michael Peña has had a lot of work this past decade but nothing that has given him the attention he deserves. His role in the 2005 Best Picture winner “Crash” was a performance in the shadows due to such a great cast, but the scene with his daughter was probably one of the most emotional moments of the film. He’s had a variety of roles in comedies, dramas, and action films, including a most recent role in “Gangster Squad” and a co-starring role alongside Jake Gyllenhaal in the critically acclaimed film “End of Watch.” His upcoming list of films aren’t that high profile so his inclusion on this list is more of a hopeful, wishful thinking rather than a definitive statement.
Idris Elba is a face that we can recognize but many don’t know the name. He’s known for his role in the BBC television series “Luther” but also has a recurring role in the “Thor” films and his role in “Prometheus” stood out among the many follies of the film. He has a strong enough background in theatre, television, and film to launch him into the spotlight and become more than just a face as long as he picks the right roles.
Shailene Woodley starred alongside George Clooney in the Oscar nominated film “The Descendants” and has been pretty much absent from the public eye since. Even though she has been playing it low key, her upcoming role as Mary Jane Watson in the sequel to “The Amazing Spider-Man” will be a role that definitely gets noticed. She may be young but with a recognized role in a popular comic book film, she may grow up pretty quick.
Dane DeHaan had the leading role in the mediocre, yet widely discussed film “Chronicle.” Although having a performance which I would consider to be a bit “overacted,” he landed a small role in “Lincoln” and was announced as taking the role of Harry Osborn in next Spider-Man film. I don’t know how I feel about him as an actor but he seems to be getting some defining roles and I expect these roles to keep his career on the climb.
Asa Butterfield had the title role in the film “Hugo” and now he will be getting the title role in the film “Ender’s Game.” At such a young age, he’s already proven himself by taking the lead in a Martin Scorsese film and now he will be taking the lead in a film based off a book that has received as much recognition as “The Hunger Games.” If “Ender’s Game” takes off like “Twilight” or “The Hunger Games” did, this could skyrocket Asa’s career.