5 actors to watch in 2017

Hollywood is a fickle mistress, and you never know when someone is about to explode into a major star or fizzle out into a C-list nobody that makes people say, “Oh, what’s he been doing lately?” While it’s probably impossible to separate the Emma Stones from the Adam Brodys, we picked five actors who will almost certainly be on the rise in the next year.

1. Haley Bennett

Where you’ve seen her: The Magnificent Seven, The Girl on the Train

What’s next: Thank You for Your Service, Weightless

You may have seen mention of the 28-year-old actress earlier this year when people couldn’t stop freaking out about her resemblance to Jennifer Lawrence. She had a big year in 2016, going toe to toe with Chris Pratt in “The Magnificent Seven,” mysteriously disappearing in “The Girl on the Train” and being one of Howard Hughes’ starlets in “Rules Don’t Apply.” In 2017, she’ll star in “Thank You for Your Service” alongside Miles Teller and Amy Schumer and then keep good company in Terrence Malick’s “Weightless.” It can’t hurt to be in a film with Ryan Gosling, Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, Natalie Portman and Michael Fassbender.

2. Zoey Deutch

Where you’ve seen her: Everybody Wants Some!!, Why Him? 

What’s next: Rebel in the Rye, Before I Fall

While you may not expect the girl from “Dirty Grandpa” to amount to much, the 22-year-old has already worked with some big names. She was the lone female character in Richard Linklater’s “Everybody Wants Some!!” and the point of conflict between James Franco and Bryan Cranston in “Why Him?” Up next, she’s in Danny Strong’s J.D. Salinger biopic alongside Nicholas Hoult, Kevin Spacey and Sarah Paulson. She also stars in the adaptation of the 2010 teen novel “Before I Fall.”

3. John Boyega

Where you’ve seen him: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

What’s next: The Circle, Star Wars Episode VIII

Sure, the 24-year-old Boyega is already on everyone’s radar because of his fantastic turn in “The Force Awakens,” but Hayden Christensen is proof that “Star Wars” does not necessarily a star make. In addition to playing Finn in the next installment, Boyega has other impressive projects on the horizon. First, he’ll appear alongside Emma Watson and Tom Hanks in an adaptation of Dave Eggers’ novel “The Circle.” He’s also starring in Kathryn Bigelow’s next film, currently untitled, about the 1967 Detroit riot. Kid’s got range.

4. Riz Ahmed

Where you’ve seen him: The Night Of, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Nightcrawler

What’s next: City of Tiny Lights

Between his performance in the buzzy HBO drama “The Night Of” and his role in “Rogue One,” the 34-year-old Ahmed had a big 2016. You may also recognize him from “Nightcrawler,” where he garnered award nominations and praise for his performance as Rick. In 2017, Ahmed will have a starring role in “City of Tiny Lights,” a British crime drama based on the 2005 novel. With both high-profile film and television projects under his belt, Ahmed is certain to book new challenging roles going forward.

5. Zendaya

Where you’ve seen her: K.C. Undercover, pop star

What’s next: Spider-Man: Homecoming

Though she doesn’t have a lot of acting credits to her name (starring in a Disney Channel series doesn’t inspire a ton of confidence), Zendaya is certainly part of the pop culture zeitgeist. The 20-year-old stands out on the red carpet, has her own fashion line and has also released a studio album as a pop star. But she’s jumping into film acting in 2017 as Michelle in “Spider-Man: Homecoming.” The girl can do it all. (Oh, and Kate McKinnon as Hillary Clinton suggested her as a potential write-in candidate for the electoral college on “SNL.”)

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