New Hollywood Hopefuls of 2011

By Raindance

If you think Hollywood is over reliant on 3D - think again. 3D is a great gimmick that allows cinemas to charge more. But you need to get the bodies in through the doors first.

Another strategy is to rely on good old-fashioned story telling, and some new stars.

Here are a few of the new faces we will be seeing in 2011:

Hailee Steinfeld in Paramount Pictures' 'True Grit'
Hailee Steinfeld in Paramount Pictures' 'True Grit'

Hail Hailee

It's no small feat to upstage Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon. But 14-year-old Hailee Steinfeld did the job with quick-draw efficiency in "True Grit." This pistol in pigtails from Thousand Oaks, Calif., had no track record to speak of before the Coen brothers made her their Mattie Ross -- "True Grit's" feisty teen heroine. Their gamble succeeded. Steinfeld won over a crotchety U.S. marshal (Bridges). She sassed a Texas Ranger (Damon) and shot at the mangiest bad guy this side of the Pecos River. Grit may have been the measure of men in this fine western. But Steinfeld was "True Grit's" true find.


Mia in Wonderland

Thanks to commanding turns in "Alice in Wonderland" and "The Kids Are All Right," 21-year-old Mia Wasikowska had Hollywood at her feet in 2010. Both films helped the waif-like Aussie with the old-soul gaze earn this year's Hollywood Award for Breakthrough Actress. They also helped Wasikowska score starring roles in Cary Fukunaga's 2011 adaption of "Jane Eyre" and Gus Van Sant's drama, "Restless." Even Robert Redford ("The Conspirator") and David Fincher ("The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo") offered Wasikowska roles. The former indie darling turned them down. If that doesn't say "I've arrived" in Hollywood, what does?


Monster smash

No one ever expected a British horror flick made for US$500,000 to succeed. But Gareth Edwards' sci-fi hit "Monsters" delivered an original premise and a sense of menace that gave moviegoers goosebumps. Set six years after extraterrestrials crash-landed in America, this creepy road movie contained 250 effects produced on the 35-year-old director's laptop. The spectacular efforts helped Edwards score the Best Director's prize at the 2010 British Independent Film Awards, and make more than US$2.7 million at the box office. "Monsters" also sent Hollywood a message: when it comes to scaring audiences, less is more.


Girl uninterrupted

Chloë Moretz, 13, packed a double punch on the big screen in 2010. The angelic blonde slammed it out of the ballpark as "Hit-Girl" in the superhero film, "Kick-Ass." She slew audiences as a vampire in "Let Me In." In both cases, Moretz transcended the usual teen cuteness factor and filled the screen with star power. Next year alone the busy actress will costar in Martin Scorsese's drama, "Hugo Cabret," and share screen time with Sam Worthington in the crime-thriller, "The Fields."


A star is born

You need guts to play a younger, cooler version of Helen Mirren, and 29-year-old Jessica Chastain showed she has plenty of them in "The Debt," John Madden's 2010 political thriller. Chastain nailed it as an Israeli Mossad agent out to capture a Nazi war criminal. Mirren, of course, waved the really big guns by the movie's end. But Chastain's arresting gaze made the big impression. Next year alone Chastain will star with Brad Pitt and Sean Penn in the fantasy-drama, "The Tree of Life." She'll tangle with Gerard Butler in Ralph Fiennes' film adaptation of Shakespeare's "Coriolanus." Watch out young Hollywood, there's a new girl in town.


The next Brad Pitt?

"Tron: Legacy" may have been a critical disappointment and its hunky star, Garret Hedlund, may have lacked the fire of "Star Trek's" Chris Pine. Nevertheless, Hollywood has high hopes for the 26-year-old who played "Tron's" Sam Flynn. In January alone Hedlund will star opposite Gwyneth Paltrow in "Country Strong," where his presence conjures up memories of Brad Pitt from his "Thelma & Louise" days. The actor raised on a beef cattle farm in Minnesota will also costar in "On the Road" with Viggo Mortensen later in 2011. Until then Hedlund shows moviegoers his stuff on the January cover of W magazine.

Yasser Talib

The next McCulkin?

That someone so young could pull off a starring role is a tribute not only to first time director but to sparkling new talent Yasser Talib. Son of Babylon should be headed for the Oscars like 2008's Slumdog Millionaire.But it seems like the movie marketing moghuls have yet to discover this heart wrenching gem of a picture with Yasser Talib's superb performance.

additional souce: CTV News

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A little bit of History
Since 1993 the Raindance Film Festival has annually uncovered the hottest new filmmakers to hit the cinematic scene. Some Raindance-premiered hits are Pulp Fiction, Memento, the Blair Witch Project, Ghost World and Love Exposure.

In 1998 Raindance launched the British Independent Film Awards – a yearly industry event attended by the upper ranks of the UK moviemaking establishment. The BIFAs are now regarded as one of the penultimate awards in the world film calendar. Honours have included Ben Kingsley, Harvey Weinstein, Richard Curtis, and helped launch countless films including 2008’s Slumdog Millionaire.

Until 2001 Raindance Film Festival was sometimes referred to as the ‘London’ or ‘pre-MIFED’ Screenings (MIFED collapsed post 9/11), essentially filling the film market position for the UK and which saw approximately 63% of films picked up by UK distributors. A similar London UK Film Focus (LUFF) was set up in 2004 by Film London, followed by the Production Finance Market in 2007.

Similarly “Raindance Kids: London’s Children Film Festival” which had been set up by Raindance and ran successfully for a number of years post 9/11 when sponsorship collapsed, hitting all arts organizations. The model was reproduced two years later by the London Barbican who now run the “London Children’s Film Festival”.

Raindance consulted on the creation of the Berlin Talent Campus and created Raindance East (now the independently run East End Film Festival).

The rest of the year at Raindance is spent training thousands of new and established filmmakers in all aspects of film. Among high profile alumni are Christopher Nolan (Batman Begins), David Yates (Harry Potter), Guy Ritchie and Matthew Vaughn – who actually met at a Raindance course. Raindance training is one of the world’s largest catering for over 3000 students per year.

Raindance set up the Independent Film Trust in 2006, a charity to help support the film festival, the BIFA awards as well as film training for disadvantaged kids. In 2007 Raindance.TV was launched, an online IPTV channel which has supported the online distribution of hundreds of features and shorts, with views topping 1 million in its first 6 months.

2010 saw the launch of a limited theatrical distribution of Raindance hits through Apollo Cinemas.

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