Over the past year, cinemas, radio airplay, and media news have been dominated by kids and teens that are up and coming (quickly) in the biz. It has been nearly impossible to pass a movie theatre without seeing a Quvenzhane Wallis poster. R&B fans have barely been able to utter three sentences without the mention of Gabi Wilson. And the runaway success of Black-ish has offered the world many new fresh faces.
It’s safe to say that 2014 has been a big year for young stars, which can only mean 2015 will be even bigger. As we move forward each year, there seems to me no doubting the old adage “the children are the future.”
Let’s take a look at six of the youngest stars to keep our eyes on in the new year.
1. Quvenzhane Wallis: If you haven’t had your eyes on this sweet Hushpuppy Oscar nominee, you’ve been living under a rock — and missing out. Lighting up every screen she graces, this 11-year-old has been on the rise since 2012 when she became the youngest person to be nominated for a Best Actress award. To bring ‘the year of Quvenzhane’ to a close, she portrayed Annie in the modern film adaptation of the timeless classic broadway show. Catch her in the heartwarming, Counting by 7s, in 2015.
2. Marcus Scribner: The biggest smash hit sitcom of 2014 has been, without a doubt, Black-ish. While addressing real issues of race and class, the show manages to stay clever, witty, and lighthearted. Best of all: the cast, of which young teen Marcus Scribner is an essential part of. Portraying Andre Jr., Marcus sets free is quaint geekiness. Until this show, Marcus had only booked bit roles on various TV shows, but it’s safe to say that will all change soon.
3. Yara Shahidi: This young star is also on the rise alongside Marcus Scribner thanks to the success of Black-ish. Yara portrays Zoey, a self-involved teenage girl who seems to be nothing like Yara’s true self. At only 14, this starlet has certainly spent some time on TV, noted for her role as Chloe in The First Family and as Young Olivia in Scandal. There’s a good chance that Yara will be staring at a cell phone on Black-ish for a while, but her obvious skills are likely to take her down a few new paths as well.
4. Sofia Richie: The daughter of R&B legend Lionel Richie, and sister of the infamous Nicole Richie, Sofia really surprised the public with her very existence. At just 15, Sofia took to modelling, abruptly raising eyebrows everywhere. She is beautiful, reserved, and well spoken. For now, she is focused on her modelling career but that will only last until her father deems her old enough to handle everything that comes with a music career. She has been speaking very publicly about her intentions to become a soulful songstress in the near future.
5. Gabi Wilson: She’s a musician on the rise, and it’s no secret why. She plays an impressive array of instruments including the guitar and the keyboards, and has been looking up to Alicia Keys since she was very young. Today, she has the guidance, support, and friendship not only of Alicia, but of many celebrities who see in her a sparkling potential. Look out for her debut album in 2015.
6. Reginae Carter: Lil’ Wayne’s teenage daughter has been working really hard to make a name for herself, brand it, and become a celebrated entrepreneur. At the moment, she is in the early stages of developing a rap career, while simultaneously working on a clothing line and acting as the junior ambassador for Hairfinity. A documentary series about her rise in the business is also being filmed. Expect to see a lot of her in the coming year.