With the BAFTA film nominations due to be announced next week, the British awards group have already unveiled their shortlist of five actors in contention for the EE Rising Star accolade.
This year’s lineup is somewhat underwhelming with new Spider-Man actor TOM HOLLAND being the overwhelming favourite to take the gong.
The 20 year Brit first caught our eye in 2012 when he won praise for his role as young Tsunami survivor Lucas in the emotional true-life drama The Impossible. After a vocal credit as Tom Hardy’s son in Locke (2013), he has also appeared in the likes of How I Live Now (2013), In the Heart of the Sea (2015) and six episodes of the historical series Wolf Hall (2015).
However his casting as Marvel superhero Peter Parker / Spider-Man should tip the award balance in his favour after he made an impressive debut as his web-slinging character in last year’s comic-book blockbuster Captain America: Civil War (2016). Holland will then reprise the role for the soon-to-be-released Spider-Man: Homecoming which is out in cinemas in July.
Tom’s competition in the category sees him up against another young male performer in LUCAS HEDGES. The Brooklyn-born actor is currently receiving attention for his role as Patrick, a troubled teenager struggling to cope with his father’s death in the potential Oscar contender Manchester by the Sea.
Prior to the part, Hedges has also appeared in Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom (2012) and The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) plus the likes of Labor Day (2013), The Zero Theorem (2013) and The Slap (2015).
The Rising Star lineup is then completed by three up-and-coming actresses who have already garnered experience in their careers.
The first of those is 31 year old Spanish actress LAIA COSTA who received acclaim for her lead role as a young woman caught up in a heist in the crime thriller Victoria (2015). She has also appeared in other native projects including Palm Trees in the Snow (2015) and two television series in Carlos, Rey Emperador (2016) and Cites (2016).
The second female contender is Irish performer RUTH NEGGA who is tipped to received a BAFTA and Oscar nomination for her performance as Mildred Loving in the real-life drama Loving. Born in Ethiopia and raised in Limerick, Ireland, Ruth has built up a strong CV of work in both television and film.
On the small-screen, she has featured in Criminal Justice (2008), Five Daughters (2010), Misfits (2010), Love/Hate (2010-11), Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (2013-15) and the supernatural series Preacher (2016-17). Film-wise, her previous work includes Breakfast on Pluto (2005), Shirley (2011), World War Z (2013) and the underwhelming fantasy flick Warcraft (2016).
The last nominee on the shortlist is American starlet ANYA TAYLOR-JOY. The Miami-born actress earned plaudits for her role as Thomasin in the historical horror The Witch (2015). She has also appeared in the television series Atlantis (2015) and had a busy 2016 when she starred in Morgan, Barry and the M. Night Shyamalan thriller Split.
The British public can vote for their choice online with last year’s winner John Boyega announcing the victor at the BAFTA Awards ceremony which takes place on February 12th.