Set For Superstardom: 2013’s Biggest Risers

Every year, a new crop of exciting young actors and actresses go from relative unknowns to some of the most in-demand in the industry. Here’s who made the biggest splash in 2013:


Dane DeHaan

Pennsylvania-born DeHaan’s been hot on our radar since his astonishing turn in found-footage superhero flick Chronicle, and has well and truly cemented his reputation as one of the most intriguing young actors in the business this year. After a cameo appearance in the Oscar-winning Lincoln, DeHaan stunned as Ryan Gosling’s troubled son in sprawling family saga The Place Beyond the Pines and as a mute roadie in Metallica’s ambitious concert film Through the Never. Next month, he’ll shine once more as Beat poet Lucien Carr in the already critically-acclaimed Kill Your Darlings.


Daniel Brühl

Aside from his role as a war hero in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds, German actor Brühl had made little impact outside of his home country until this year. Now, he’s been hailed as an Oscar contender after his mesmerising performance in Formula 1 biopic Rush, which saw him take on Chris Hemsworth’s enigmatic James Hunt as the obsessive, methodical Austrian driver Niki Lauda. Not content with portraying just one real-life figure in 2013, he also starred opposite Benedict Cumberbatch as WikiLeaks spokesperson Daniel Domscheit-Berg in The Fifth Estate.


Dave Franco

While older brother James Franco has been hot property in Hollywood for years, 28-year-old Dave was predominantly a star of the small screen, appearing in TV shows such as Scrubs and Greek, until 2013. This year, however, he’s been following in his brother’s footsteps and making huge waves in the film industry, with high-profile hits like zombie romance Warm Bodies and magician heist thriller Now You See Me to his name. Next up is Seth Rogen-starrer Neighbours, in which he’ll play an unruly frat boy and best friend to Zac Efron’s chief douchebag.


Domhnall Gleeson

Harry Potter fans have been familiar with this 30-year-old Irishman since 2010, thanks to his portrayal of the werewolf-ravaged Bill Weasley in Deathly Hallows: Part 1 and 2. He’s hit the big time this year, though, after playing the bumbling lead in Richard Curtis’s hit rom-com About Time, alongside A-lister Rachel McAdams.

The son of the great Brendan Gleeson has also popped up in a memorable episode of popular Channel 4 satire Black Mirror and landed a role in Angelina Jolie’s WWII drama Unbroken, which is sure to propel him even further to stardom in 2014.


Olga Kurylenko

She may be a former Bond girl (she was picked out at audition by Daniel Craig for Quantum of Solace), but it wasn’t until this year that Ukrainian-born Kurylenko became a real star. Not only has the actress and model starred with Tom Cruise in post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller Oblivion, she’s also appeared as Ben Affleck’s love interest in Terrence Malick’s beautiful romantic drama To the Wonder. What’s more, she returned as a lead character in the second season of 1950s-set US series Magic City. Expect her profile to only rise next year – Kurylenko has an incredible five films slated for release in 2014.


Brie Larson

She won her fair share of acclaim for her role as Toni Collette’s rebellious daughter in Golden Globe-winning TV series United States of Tara, but it was only in 2013 that critics really began to sit up and take notice of 24-year-old Larson. The actress and musician’s turn as a foster care facility supervisor in Short Term 12 was nothing short of a revelation, and she delivers strong supporting performances in Don Jon, which hits cinemas on 15 November, and The Spectacular Now, which premiered at the London Film Festival last month (general UK release date to be confirmed).


Alexandra Roach

Welsh actress Roach has been one to watch since her portrayal of one of the most iconic figures in British history – she impressed as a young Margaret Thatcher in Oscar-winning biopic The Iron Lady. 2013 has sent the 26-year-old further down the road to stardom with starring roles in groundbreaking cult TV series Utopia and British psychological thriller Trap for Cinderella. On top of those flicks, Roach also appeared as the wife of famous Britain’s Got Talent winner Paul Potts in rags-to-riches tale One Chance, which was released last month.


Ruth Wilson

Yes, she’s been a formidable presence on television and stage this side of the pond for a good few years, but 2013 was the year that Wilson hit Hollywood – and she did it in style. The Kent-born actress played the leading lady in Gore Verbinski’s blockbuster Western The Lone Ranger with co-stars Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer. She also has a pivotal role in Tom Hanks-starrer Saving Mr. Banks, which chronicles the making of

Mary Poppins and hits cinemas before the year is out. 2014 will see Wilson team up with Liam Neeson for crime drama A Walk Among the Tombstones.