Top 10 future stars for 2014 – actress edition

After the success of last week’s Future stars – actor edition, I’ve moved onto actresses I think have the potential to rocket right into the limelight. Once again we have stars at varying levels of their careers, some who have had more roles than others but all of whom are still at least one step away from super stardom.


Adèle Exarchopoulos
What makes her stand out?: She manages to balance sex appeal with enough innocence to deliver a really powerful performance that catapulted a French film about lesbians into the spotlight.
Recent standout roles: Adèle in Blue is the Warmest Color (2013)
Interesting upcoming roles: Unknown in The Last Face
Current star rating: 20/10
“In every shoot, between the actor and the director there is manipulation. I’m not saying that negatively. It’s healthy.”


Emily Blunt
What makes her stand out?: She can play any role – regal, tough, quirky, funny and she’s quite possibly the most beautiful woman who has ever lived. She’s on the edge of total box office domination.
Recent standout roles: Sara in Looper (2012), Rita in Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
Interesting upcoming roles: Kate Macy in Sicario (2015)
Current star rating: 80/100
“The performances I enjoy are the ones that are hard to read or ambiguous or left-of-centre because it makes you look closer and that’s what humans are like – quite mysterious creatures, hard to pinpoint.”

Lupita Nyongoo

Lupita Nyong’o
What makes her stand out?: Although she wasn’t the star of 12 Years a Slave she was the beating emotional heart of the film with an ability to portray a world of emotion just in her eyes. She also won an Oscar for her first major role.
Recent standout roles: Patsey in 12 Years a Slave (2013)
Interesting upcoming roles: Unknown in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens  (2015)
Current star rating: 60/100
“There is something about acting that’s mysterious and magical because there is only so much I can do to prepare, and then I have to just let go and breathe and believe that it will come through.”

Margot Robbie

Margot Robbie
What makes her stand out?: She oozes sex appeal but still manages to deliver a powerful emotional performance that enabled her to hold her own against a legend like Leonardo DiCaprio.
Recent standout roles: Naomi LaPaglia in The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
Interesting upcoming roles: Jane Porter in Tarzan (2016)
Current star rating: 40/100
“I was always very dramatic – my family would probably use the word ‘dramatic’ – as a child; always putting on performances, making everyone come watch, and pay to watch. I was very business-savvy as a child.”

Mia Wasikowska

Mia Wasikowska
What makes her standout?: She defies the traditional Hollywood beauty ideal and isn’t afraid to take on really challenging roles.
Recent standout roles: India Stoker in Stoker (2013), Bertha Minnix in Lawless (2012)
Interesting upcoming roles: Edith Cushing in Crimson Peak (2015)
Current star rating: 55/100
“When I step back and look at all of these really successful people that I’ve worked with, one thing I do take away from it is how hard they work and how focused they are.”

Natalie Dormer

Natalie Dormer
What makes her standout?: She’s delicate and pretty but she can really pull off a badass bitch.
Recent standout roles: Margery Tyrell in Game of Thrones (2011 -), Sarah in The Fades (2011)
Interesting upcoming roles: Cressida in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 (2014) and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (2015)
Current star rating: 25/100
“I had a period of unemployment for about nine months after my first big break, and it’s the greatest lesson I ever could have learned, never to believe you’re home and dry.”

rooney mara

Rooney Mara
What makes her standout?: She’s a chameleon who is completely different in every role
Recent standout roles: Lisbeth Salander in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011), Emily Taylor in Side Effects (2013)
Interesting upcoming roles: Therese Belivet in Carol (2015), Tiger Lily in Pan (2015)
Current star rating: 45/100
“I always wanted to be an actor, but I was always fighting it. It never seemed that honorable to me, and I guess I was always afraid that I might fail.”

Rosamund Pike

Rosamund Pike
What makes her standout?: Her role in Gone Girl proved that she’s more than just an icy beauty and that she really has the skills to pull off a complex, multilayered character with style.
Recent standout roles: Amy Dunne in Gone Girl (2014)
Interesting upcoming roles:  Unknown in Return to Sender (2014)
Current star rating: 60/100
“Nothing can teach you what it’s like to work on a film set, and the best education there can be for an actor is to walk up the street and observe human nature.”

Saoirse Ronan

Saoirse Ronan
What makes her standout?: There’s something kind of ethereal and understated about her plus she’s had some great supporting roles.
Recent standout roles: Agatha in The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Upcoming interesting roles: Leia in Stockholm, Pennsylvania (2015), Ellis Lacey in Brooklyn (2015)
Current star rating: 35/100
“I think it’s important that we have strong, female characters in movies now, which can really leave an impression on people – especially young people – and that they’re not ‘sexy’ or ‘cool.'”

Sarah Paulson

Sarah Paulson
What makes her standout?: She is amazing at playing characters that are somehow reprehensible and vulnerable all at once. It feels like she is always pushing herself.
Recent standout roles: Various in American Horror Story (2011 – ), Mistress Epps in 12 Years A Slave (2013)
Upcoming interesting roles: Abby Gerhard in Carol (2015), Kate Haber in The Runner (2015)
Current star rating: 50/100
“I think it’s very important for people to not judge the people you’re playing. You have to find a way to love them because their story is theirs. I just don’t think there would be any use in that.”


  1. Once again, some excellent choices here! Great work Abbi!

    1. Abbi

      Dankie, skattie!

  2. Abbi, fun list. Yes to everyone on your list. I’d be happy if they all got Oscars. A generation of talented ladies!

    1. Abbi

      I am just really glad that we’re seeing actresses who aren’t just airhead Barbies getting good roles!

  3. MIB

    Totally agree on Adèle Exarchopoulos. I’m keen to see where she goes next. As for Lupita Nyong’o I am a little more concerned about her since she is now Hollywood property and she’ll end up in some dross beneath her already impressive but nascent talent.

  4. Excellent choices, I love Emily Blunt and Rosamund Pike.

  5. Sarah Paulson is SO gorgeous. Her mouth and the way she talks hypnotizes me…

    1. Abbi

      I know exactly what you mean. She is stunning!

  6. Phenomenal list! Big fan of most of these ladies, especially Ronan, Paulson, Pike and Mara. I think Emily Blunt already qualifies as a star.

    1. Abbi

      I would totally agree on Emily Blunt but I don’t think Hollywood has totally recognised her amazingness yet.

  7. LOVE Saoirse Ronan, she’s freakishly talented. I’d add Gugu Mbatha-Raw who impressed me in two VERY different roles this year. She’s absolutely stunning and super talented, I’d love to see more of her in prominent roles.

    1. Abbi

      Gugu Mbatha-Raw is a good shout!

  8. Another great post here on actresses, Abbi! I think Emily Blunt is getting to be really big, and I love that because she’s soooo good in everything that shows up in. I’m also happy for Lupita Nyong’o, and I hope that she continues to get more opportunities. Saorise Ronan is one of my favorites, and I appreciate that at such a young age, she seems very grounded and friendly. Great list of ladies on here!

    1. Abbi

      I really believe Emily Blunt is going to be absolutely massive. I adore her.

      I’m just glad we have some ladies who aren’t airheads to enjoy on our screens.

      1. I think so too! She just keeps picking more and more great roles!

        I know, right? Yay for intelligent women taking over the big screen!

  9. Excellent choices. Great idea for a post too. Some of these are super close to really, really making it. Emily Blunt has been kocking on that door for a while.

    1. Abbi

      I think she’s one really big role away from being total A-List.

  10. Great choices but quite different from your guys as these ladies are kind of stars already (at least to me). 🙂 And I also think they have the potential to become huge if they want to. For example, I’m not sure if girls like Mia Wasikovska actually want to be “stars” in the sense of being celebrity rather than “just-actress” if you understand what I mean. I very much enjoy your lists.

    1. Abbi

      I totally see where you’re coming from. They are probably better known than the male actors I chose. I think they all have the potential to become major stars but most don’t seem the type to want to be tabloid fodder.

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