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Skins’ Breakout Stars Take Over Hollywood

March 14th, 2013

Kaya 4

British teen drama Skins is rivaling Degrassi as a platform to catapult young actors and actresses into Hollywood. Just like Degrassi, this U.K. hit continuously introduces a new generation of characters each season to replace previous ones once they graduate. This is a smart decision that benefits the show and its cast. It allows for fresh faces to shine and for predecessors to pursue other projects while the iron is still hot. Leading this new British invasion of young talent crossing the pond are Nicholas Hoult, Dev Patel, Luke Pasqualino and Kaya Scodelario.

Nicholas Hoult 2

Nicholas Hoult played Tony Stonem, the original lead character back when the show started in 2007. Since leaving the show, the 23-year-old has had small roles in films like A Single Man, X-Men: First Class and Clash of the Titans. Hoult also had a real-life romance with his First Class co-star, Jennifer Lawrence. The two will reunite in the film’s sequel, X-Men: Days of Future Past, due in theaters next year.

This year is Hoult’s test for movie star potential, with two leading roles in Jack the Giant Slayer and Warm Bodies. Jack the Giant Slayer debuted at the top of the box office with $28 million, but experts still consider it a flop since its budget is $190 million. Warm Bodies, which has a budget of $35 million, was received better by critics and audiences. It debuted with $20 million on Super Bowl weekend.

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Hoult’s Series 1 co-star Dev Patel was the first Skins graduate to get a big break in film. Patel made his debut starring in 2008’s Slumdog Millionaire. The film won eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture. The 22-year-old actor followed up Danny Boyle’s indie film with 2010’s The Last Airbender. The film was a flop, both critically and financially.

Patel returned to respected projects with 2012’s The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, opposite British acting legends like Judi Dench and Maggie Smith. He is also now part of the ensemble cast of Aaron Sorkin’ HBO hit, The Newsroom.

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Luke Pasqualino, who joined Skins in Series 4 as the brooding Freddie Mclair, has found success in television. He played a young William Adama in the television movie, Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome and had a recurring role in the period drama, The Borgias. Next up, he stars in Snowpiercer a sci-fi action film with Tilda Swinton, Chris Evans and Allison Pill.

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Kaya Scodelario played Tony’s younger sister, Effy, on the show. She’s slowly making her way into the world of film. Among her notable film projects are Adrea Arnold’s Wuthering Heights and Ol Parker’s Now Is Good. With her stunning beauty, she is bound to get leading roles soon.

What are your thoughts on this new crop of English actors emerging in Hollywood? Do you have favourites?

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