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The Breakouts: 10 Up-and-Coming Actors to Watch in Toronto

Photo of Nigel M Smith By Nigel M Smith | Indiewire September 6, 2012 at 9:18AM

While the Toronto International Film Festival is mostly known for its star wattage and Oscar-bait fare, the event also serves as a springboard for up-and-coming actors to make their marks. Freida Pinto, Ellen Page, Shailene Woodley, Dev Patel, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Oscar-nominee Keisha Castle-Hughes all came to Toronto as relative unknowns and emerged as highly sought-after talents. With the 37th edition of the festival launching tonight with the world premiere of Rian Johnson's sci-fi spectacular "Looper," we offer our picks for the ten actors to watch this year.
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Alicia Vikander in "A Royal Affair"
Magnolia Alicia Vikander in "A Royal Affair"
Callan McAuliffe ("Undergound")

Why You May Know Him: It's probable you've seen the young Australian dreamboat in the gentle love story "Flipped" and/or the actioner "I Am Number Four," which also starred "Magic Mike"'s Alex Pettyfer.

What Toronto Could Mean For Him: Making his first TIFF appearance, McAuliffe is sure to further ingratiate himself with his ever-growing female fanbase with his turn as a best friend to Jullian Assange, the Australian-born founder of the whistle-blower website WikiLeaks, in "Underground," a biopic on the teenaged hacker. In the film, McAuliffe stars alongside two of Australia's most acclaimed actors, Rachel Griffiths and Anthony LaPaglia.

What's Next: He'll next be seen in "The Great Gatsby," directed by fellow Aussie Baz Luhrmann. In the 3D period extravaganza (out in theaters next summer), McAuliffe plays the younger version of Leonardo DiCaprio's Jay Gatsby. Those are some auspicious shoes to fill.
 

Mickey Sumner ("Frances Ha," "Imogene")

Why You May Know Her: After appearing briefly in "Last Chance Harvey" alongside Emma Thompson and Dustin Hoffman, Sumner played a substantial supporting role in Showtime's historical series "The Borgias" (which also stars Holliday Grainger, who made this list).

What Toronto Could Mean For Her: With supporting roles in two of the festival's most hotly anticipated titles -- Noah Baumbach's black-and-white comedy "Frances Ha" and Kristen Wiig's star vehicle "Imogene" -- 2012 is no doubt Sumner's biggest year yet. What better way to cap it off than with her first visit to TIFF?

What's Next: For her next project, Sumner will be portraying legendary musician Patti Smith in "CBGB," a star-studded look at the New York City punk-rock scene and the venerable titular nighclub.
 

Alicia Vinkander ("Anna Karenina," "A Royal Affair")

Why You May Know Her: Already a star in her native Sweden, the gorgeous Vinkander is best known for her role in the Swedish TV drama "Andra Avenyn." Earlier this year she turned heads in Berlin, where her period drama "A Royal Affair" had its premiere.

What Toronto Could Mean For Her: With "A Royal Affair" having already screened in Berlin, her English-language on-screen debut in "Anna Karenina" will be the one that could draw the most attention (it also stars Holliday Grainger, who made this list). If she nails the meaty part of Kitty, a beautiful young woman courted by both Domhnall Gleeson and Aaron Johnson, she stands a good chance of crossing over for good.

What's Next: Up next for the budding star is another period romp, albeit a supernatural one. In the 18th-century adventure story "The Seventh Son," Vikander will star opposite Julianne Moore, Jeff Bridges, Olivia Williams and Ben Barnes. The film is set to open October 18, 2013.
 

Nat Wolff in "Stuck in Love"
TIFF Nat Wolff in "Stuck in Love"
Nat Wolff ("Writers")

Why You May Know Him: Despite only being 17 years old, Wolff has already worked opposite Jane Fonda, Halle Berry, Robert De Niro and Sarah Jessica Parker thanks to supporting turns in "New Year's Eve" and "Peace, Love & Misunderstanding." In the latter, he had a meatier part as Elizabeth Olsen's meddlesome brother.

What Toronto Could Mean For Him: As Greg Kinnear and Jennifer Connelly's hopelessly romantic son in the family drama "Writers," Wolff returns to the festival (he was there last year with "Peace") to showcase his biggest on-screen role to date. He showed great promise by managing not to get blown off the screen by Fonda and Catherine Keener in "Peace," so if he can still leave a mark with Kinnear and Connelly by his side, then he can prove that his turn in "Peace" was no fluke.

What's Next: Wolff is said to be currently filming the comedy "Feed the Dog," opposite Selena Gomez and Mary-Louise Parker. Before that opens, expect to see him in Paul Weitz's latest, "Admission," starring Paul Rudd and Tina Fey. The film has wrapped principal photography but has yet to receive a release date.

This article is related to: Toronto International Film Festival, Penn Badgley, Callan McAuliffe, Nat Wolff, Alicia Vinkander, Mickey Sumner, Ewen Leslie, Olga Kurylenko, Tom Hollander, Holliday Grainger, Alice Englert





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