The nominees for the BAFTA EE Rising Star Award were announced on Tuesday. Actors Ariana DeBose, Harris Dickinson, Lashana Lynch, Millicent Simmonds, and Kodi Smit-McPhee round out the list for demonstrating “exceptional talent in film over the past year.” The winner will join a star-studded list of past winners, including Eva Green, Tom Hardy, Kristen Stewart, James McAvoy, and Tom Holland. Here is a bit about each nominee:
DeBose shined last year in Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story in the role of Anita. She isn’t a stranger to musicals, having appeared as part of the assembled cast of Hamilton. This year she’ll be appearing in Matthew Vaughn’s action spy-thriller Argylle alongside the incredibly stacked cast of Henry Cavill, John Cena, Bryce Dallas Howard, Samuel L. Jackson, Sam Rockwell, Bryan Cranston, and Catherine O’Hara.
Dickinson has already established himself in significant roles at only 25-years-old. In 2019 he voiced Gurkin in Netflix’s The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, and played Prince Philip in Maleficent: Mistress of Evil the same year. Last year he appeared as Conrad Oxford in The King’s Man and will be starring in See How They Run in 2022. See How They Run is a historical mystery thriller starring Adrien Brody, Saoirse Ronan, Sam Rockwell, and David Oyelowo.
Marvel fans will recognize the next nominee as Maria Rambeau from 2019’s Captain Marvel. That isn’t the only major franchise she’s appeared in, having played Nomi alongside Daniel Craig in last year’s Bond flick No Time to Die. Audiences will see Lynch’s singing chops this year in the upcoming Matilda musical as Miss Honey with Emma Thompson and Stephen Graham.
This nomination seems a bit overdue. Simmonds is most recognizable to fans of A Quiet Place. She played the hearing-impaired daughter Regan Abbott to on-screen parents John Krasinski and Emily Blunt. She already has a similar award on her resume having won the Hollywood Critics Association award for ‘Next Generation of Hollywood’ in 2020.
Kodi Smit-McPhee may be the front-runner for this award, appearing as Peter Gordon in 2021’s The Power of the Dog. He holds his own, acting against an Oscar-worthy performance from Benedict Cumberbatch. We have more to look forward to from Smit-McPhee as he will play country singer Jimmie Rodgers in the untitled Elvis Presley film to be released this year.
This particular award is voted on by the public and polls opened at 11AM today. The winner will be announced during the BAFTA ceremony taking place in London on March 13th.