Brit Marling, Elizabeth Olsen, Edward Burns, Terrence Howard and Gabourey Sidibe all came to Park City as relative unknowns and emerged as highly sought-after talents. With the 2013 edition of the Sundance Film Festival launching tomorrow, the springboard is loaded. Here's Indiewire's picks for the 10 actors to watch this year.
Tyler Ross ("Milkshake")
Why You May Know Him: 23-year-old Tyler Ross is best known for his lead turns in two gay-themed films, "The Wise Kids" and "Nate and Margaret." He also starred in two episodes of the Keley Grammer-starring series, "Boss."
What Sundance Could Mean for Him: In David Andalman's feature-length debut "Milkshake," Ross is afforded his juiciest role to date as a young guy reaching for a dream he will never achieve: to become a black man. Early buzz suggests the movie is very funny, no doubt thanks in large part to his performance. If he hits it out of the park with this NEXT entry, he could leave Park City with some great notices and maybe some future offers.
What's Next: Nothing in the books yet. Look for that to change when "Milkshake" debuts.
Liam James ("The Way, Way Back")
Why You May Know Him: 16-year-old Canadian actor Liam James played a young Vince Vaughn in "Fred Claus," and son to John Cusack in the summer blockbuster "2012" in addition to appearing in TV shows like the American remake of "The Killing" and "Psych."
What Sundance Could Mean For Him: In "The Way, Way Back," the filmmaking debut of Jim Rash and Nat Faxon (two of the writers behind "The Descendants"), James plays lead opposite a cast that includes Steve Carell, Toni Colette, Allison Janney, Sam Rockwell and Maya Rudolph. If he can hold his own among this formidable ensemble, then he has a very bright future ahead.
What's Next: Nothing official...yet.
Lindsay Burdge ("A Teacher")
Why You May Know Her: Lindsay Burdge most recently appeared opposite indie horror master Ti West in Joe Swanberg's "All the Light in the Sky," which played at AFI Fest in 2012. A favorite on the indie circuit, Burdge's credits include Benjamin Dickinson's "First Winter" and Ricky Shane Reid's "White Fox Mask."
What Sundance Could Mean For Her: A lot. In Hannah Fiddel's "A Teacher," Burdge appears in pretty much every scene as an attractive suburban Texas high school teacher who's having an affair with a student. The subject matter alone will no doubt court a ton of attention, and if her performance goes over well, she stands to be one of the biggest breakouts of the festival. Bravery goes noticed.
What's Next: Burdge will soon be returning to Austin (where she shot "A Teacher") to film "The Sideways Light," a movie she refers to as "another female-driven enterprise."