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Part of what happens is Forbes magazine or Time magazine or “TMZ” tell us who are the new influential people to look out for. Most of the time, this is confusing because the It Girl or male heartthrob (since “It Boy” isn’t a thing) haven’t done much of anything yet. Who says they have talent or that their next projects or performances are any good?

What happened to Jack O’Connell? I didn’t research it, so maybe he got into trouble or started a family (like a cult?), but after Unbroken, I had to go backwards to see what was up with his talent.

Did the hype truly begin with someone noticing his work in Eden Lake? Or spread the word after Starred Up? They just got word and saw posters of ’71 and went back and faked it, right? (And why aren’t his movies listed on IMDb.com?)

Lots of times, I start with the earlier films because I haven’t yet seen the It Girl’s/Boy’s newest movie and want to see where the buzz started.

Did anyone really know about Eric Bana in Chopper before Hulk? Were they truly that blown away by his work in Black Hawk Down? Because it was strangely disappointing to think he wasn’t as good in Troy and Munich when we were supposed to be awaiting his brilliant performances – based on a single performance: Chopper. (Bana’s movies aren’t listed on IMDb.com either!)

We all noticed Alicia Vikander in A Royal Affair, but I’m not going to pretend I saw Pure two years earlier, or that I was awaiting her next role after Ex Machina. She was good, but … I honestly didn’t realize how amazing she could be until I recently watched her disappear into a layered performance in the horrendous limited series remake “Irma Vep” (2022). (Only “self” is listed on these actors on IMDb.com! Why?!)

The other thing that happens is you, the viewer, get busy raising a family (like Jack O’Connell’s non-existent cult?) or get sucked into the streaming vortex and become limited on what’s recommended through algorithms. Or you just ain’t hip. (Okay, I guess IMDb.com is no longer listing actor filmographies and becoming Amazon Freevee or something.)

By name, and model-like photos, here’s a list of guys I’ve never heard of (I don’t believe).

 

Abraham Attah

Jace Norman

Charlie Plummer

Jaden Smith [Oh, right. I know him.]

Tanner Buchanan

Jharrel Jerome

Asa Butterfield

Hero Fiennes Tiffin

 

(Because of IMDb.com bailing on me, I had to breakdown and Google “new male actors.” The following list appeared under the title: “most famous young male actors of 2023” which I didn’t type. And where’s Timothée Chalamet and Tom Holland and Harry Styles? I don’t know about Tim or Harry, but I can say I noticed Tom’s potential back in 2012 with The Impossible only to now question his acting altogether. He sort of annoys me.)

The other thing that happens is their early work is forgotten or not noticed. Sometimes the performances are worth the attention, sometimes not. (I mean, that’s what I’ve been hinting at this entire time.)

I’ve been waiting for Scott Haze to make it big, but he’s still popping up in itty-bitty parts (Sound of Freedom) and not stealing the show. (Child of God. Sensational work.)

The whole point of this article was to bring your attention to Amandla Stenberg, Bryan Tyree Henry, Ayo Edebiri, and Rachel Sennott (in no particular order).

There are many more out there (like Christopher Abbott), but I realized Ayo and Rachel have been doing some of my favorite work lately (realizing Ayo was the stand-out voice in the new Ninja Turtle movie while watching Hulu’s “The Bear” and excited to learn both she and Rachel are writers).

I don’t feel like researching anymore to tell you where these people started or what to watch, because Google and IMDb.com are dumb.

But make sure the actors you seek are at least in the movies (or doing the voices) of the things you’re watching. Search engines stall and breakdown sometimes.

Start with Shiva Baby, I guess. Because director Emma Seligman’s newest film, Bottoms, could have been better had the violence been more satirical and phony or, at least, realistically bloody. Without making that hard choice, it became kind of bad and unsatisfying. (I enjoyed most of it. Maybe you’ll love the whole thing.)

[NOTE: Fellow filmmaker Renny Barris informed me that IMDb.com just has an idiotic drop down and that actor filmographies are still there. But I already knew that. And, I swear, they weren’t there the day I utilized the database for this article. Also, I can’t find the article where I read that IMDb.com’s filmography was going to be a thing of the past. I don’t understand. what happened. However, I do know it was nice, once upon a time, when there was a database that wasn’t entirely picture-based or Wikipedia. See ya, old version of IMDb.com. We’ll miss ya.)

[NOTE: This is a purposefully pictureless article.]
Dan Jones

Author Dan Jones

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