The Rising Hollywood Stars Who Will Light Up Your Screen in 2015

As we approach the Oscars this coming Sunday, MAKERS is considering the young women who are about to make their mark on Hollywood as MAKERS in the Making. Their characters include historical greats, a James Bond accomplice, and a college comedian. In 2015, they'll be playing action heroes, indie leads, and punk musicians. Click through the slideshow above to meet women who will move Hollywood forward in 2015 and beyond.


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Lily James will play Cinderella in Disney’s upcoming live-action feature. The rising 25-year-old will act with Cate Blanchett as the evil stepmother and Helena Bonham Carter as fairy godmother. Previously, she’s played Lady Rose MacClare on PBS’ “Downton Abbey.”

Gugu Mbatha-Raw had a big 2014: She starred in “Belle” and “Beyond the Lights,” two of the three movies directed by black women last year. She also had a role in Jupiter Ascending, the blockbuster starring Mila Kunis and Channing Tatum. Upcoming? “The Free State of Jones,” with Matthew McConaughey and Keri Russell. 

At 26, Zoe Kravitz is already an established musician as LOLAWOLF, but her next big break will be as an actor, with Insurgent, Mad Max, and two rock n’ roll indie films set for 2015.

Carmen Ejogo played Coretta Scott King in Ava DuVernay’s MLK biopic “Selma.” Her filmography is long and varied, but if you’re in touch with the Indie scene, you might recognize her as Maya Rudolph’s sister in “Away We Go.” In 2015, you'll see her in "Born to be Blue," a movie about jazz legend Chet Baker starring Ethan Hawke. 

Israeli actor Gal Gadot landed the role of Wonder Woman after roles in the "Fast & Furious" franchise and the upcoming "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice." 

Naomie Harris is a British actor who played Moneypenny to Daniel Craig’s Bond in "Skyfall." She’s got three movies in the works for 2015, including the next Bond movie. (Finally, a female Bond character that’s a friend and fighter, not a lover or a betrayer!)

Jillian Bell deadpanned her way through "22 Jump Street," effectively humiliating Jonah Hill’s character and stealing every scene she was in. Up next, she’ll be in "Goosebumps." 

Bel Powley is a British actor making her American debut in “The Diary of a Teenage Girl,” which just premiered at Sundance. The story — based on a graphic novel of the same name — is directed by Marielle Heller, who told Variety, “I’m interested in character-driven women’s stories…telling them in ambitious and crazy ways that other people might think are insane.”