We hear a lot about certain actresses, especially when they are in popular movies (ex: Kristen Stewart, Amanda Seyfried, Ellen Page, and Zooey Deschanel), but there are a lot of talented young actresses that don't get as much recognition. Here is my Top Five list of underrated young actresses.
5. Mary Elizabeth Winstead
Although she has experienced an increase in popularity due to her role as Ramona Flowers in the recent film adaptation of Scott Pilgrim, Winstead has a relatively short filmography. She started out playing guest starring roles on popular TV shows including "Touched by an Angel" and "Tru Calling", as well as a short stint on cult favorite soap "Passions". Winstead then moved to parts in several horror flicks (The Ring 2, Final Destination 3, and Black Christmas) before being cast as the presumably ill-fated Lee in Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof. Winstead's star does seem to be on the rise after Scott Pilgrim, however. She is currently working on the prequel/remake of John Carpenter's The Thing (a film that I'm not exactly happy about) and the film adaption of horror/history satire Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.
Favorite Mary Elizabeth Winstead role: Lee in Death Proof
Amurri has some serious film lineage as the daughter of actress Susan Sarandon and director Franco Amurri. She got her start in small roles in many of her mother's films (Dead Man Walking, Anywhere But Here, and The Banger Sisters), but has some definite acting chops of her own. Lately, Amurri has appeared in small television roles ("How I Met Your Mother", "House", "Mercy", and a recurring role on HBO series "Californication"), but she has three films set to be released in 2011.
Favorite Eva Amurri role: Cassandra in Saved!
Imogen Poots is a young British actress whom I first noticed in V for Vedetta (she played the young Valerie). She is probably most known for her role as Tammy in 28 Weeks Later, however. Poots has a very unique look and a maturity beyond her years. She tends to be relegated to smaller roles, but after the critically acclaimed Cracks, she may be seeing some larger parts. She was most recently in the film adaptation of Jane Eyre and has three movies in production, including a remake of the horror comedy classic Fright Night.
Favorite Imogen Poots role: Tammy in 28 Weeks Later (although I am anxious to see her in Cracks as well)
Ronan is much younger than the other women on this list, but she is an extremely talented actress who is often overlooked for more well-known, but similarly aged names like Dakota Fanning and Emma Watson. She is best known for her roles in Atonement (as the young Briony Tallis) and The Lovely Bones (as Susie Salmon), but I predict we haven't even seen her best yet. Ronan's film Hanna will be released later this year and she is currently rumored to be working on the eagerly anticipated adaptation of The Hobbit.
Favorite Saoirse Ronan role: Susie Salmon in The Lovely Bones
Another British actress, Garai has a history of being overshadowed by her more well-known costars, despite her brilliant performances (especially in Atonement with Keira Knightly and Vanity Fair with Reese Witherspoon). She is especially good in the BBC mini-series she appears in (ex: Emma and Daniel Deronda). Garai has another mini-series in the works, The Crimson Petal and the White (based on the novel and also starring Chris O'Dowd!), as well as a few independent films.
Favorite Romola Garai role: Briony Tallis (at 18) in Atonement