Ones to Watch

Andy Samberg

Why he’s hot: The Saturday Night Live alum, 35, brings his goofball humor to FOX’s new police comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

Training day: To prepare for their roles, Samberg and his castmates visited a shooting range. “I think I only got shot by three of them,” he jokes. “I’m like, ‘Maybe I am the lead of this show. I think I’m earning their trust, except for those three.’ ”

In 10 years … Wed in September to singer-songwriter Joanna Newsom, Samberg hopes for kids in the future. “And to not get kicked out of the business – that’s my main goal.”

Photographed on Aug. 25 in Los Angeles

Kacey Musgraves

Why she’s hot: The country singer’s new album Same Trailer Different Park earned rave reviews, and she just kicked off her solo tour.

How she got here: To make ends meet when she first moved to Nashville, “I dressed up for little kids’ birthday parties, painting faces,” says the Texas native, 25. “I got paid in change.”

She knew she’d made it … “When I heard my song ‘Merry Go ‘Round’ on the radio for the first time,” she says. “I bawled my eyes out and almost wrecked my car. Nothing could have prepared me for that moment.”

Photographed on Aug. 9 in N.Y.C.

Michael B. Jordan

Why he’s hot: After breaking out in critical TV hits The Wire and Friday Night Lights, he’s generating Oscar buzz for his first major starring film role, as slain Bay Area 22-year-old Oscar Grant in the drama Fruitvale Station.

Risky business: The film is based on true events, and after “getting to know the family, I didn’t want to let anyone down,” the actor, 26, says of his Fruitvale portrayal.

That other Michael Jordan: “If I was three inches taller, I’d be in the NBA for sure,” quips Jordan, who has been mistaken for the basketball legend. “That never gets old!”

Photographed on Aug. 26 in Los Angeles

Rebel Wilson

Why she’s hot: The brash Aussie stars in ABC’s new sitcom Super Fun Night.

How she got here: After catching malaria during a trip to Africa, Wilson, 27, hallucinated she was an Oscar-winning actress while in the hospital. She then scrapped plans to be a lawyer: “People thought I was nuts!”

Words of wisdom: As the star – who broke out in 2011’s Bridesmaids and 2012’s Pitch Perfect – embarked on her career, fellow funny lady Amy Poehler offered serious guidance. Her advice? “Generate your own material.”

Photographed on July 29 in Los Angeles

Capital Cities

Why they’re hot: After meeting up on Craigslist, the indie pop duo of Ryan Merchant, 32, and Sebu Simonian, 35, burst onto the music scene with their hit single “Safe and Sound.”

Success story: While struggling to make it, Merchant (top) and Simonian self-funded a radio campaign for their single. “Investing your own money is risky,” says Merchant. “But in our case it paid off. I learned from my parents, you have to work as hard as you can if you want to succeed.” Adds Simonian: “We’re thrilled to be on this journey.”

Photographed on Aug. 26 in Los Angeles

Benedict Cumberbatch

Why he’s hot: Having gone from Sherlock to Star Trek, the brainy British actor, 37, whose die-hard fans call themselves “Cumberbabes,” will appear in three of fall’s buzziest films: The Fifth Estate, 12 Years a Slave and August: Osage County.

Defining moment: After a college performance of Amadeus, the star’s tearful father, also an actor, praised his son’s talent. “Once I had that blessing, I thought, ‘I’d better prove him right.’ ”

In 10 years … “I’d like to be ensconced in a good book, surrounded by people I love.”

Photographed on Sept. 8 in Toronto

Anna Faris

Why she’s hot: The Seattle-raised actress, 36, served up a hit in Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2and stars as a recently sober mom on the new CBS comedy Mom.

Big break: Faris helped catapult 2000’s spoof Scary Movie into a cult franchise. Director Keenen Ivory Wayans offered advice she’s never forgotten: “There’s no vanity in comedy. Risk looking foolish.”

True love: Wed since 2009 to Parks and Recreation star Chris Pratt, 34, she also plays the role of real-life mom to son Jack, 1. “I’m one of those goofy parents now,” she says. “I stare at pictures of him all day.”

Photographed on Oct. 1 in Los Angeles

Sam Claflin

Why he’s hot: The British actor, 27, will sizzle alongside Jennifer Lawrence as tribute Finnick Odair in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, out in November.

The transformation: His character “is supposed to be somewhat of an Adonis,” says Claflin, who trained two hours daily and restricted his diet to protein and vegetables. “I’m English, so I like beer and burgers, and that had to be cut out completely. It was pretty brutal.”

Change of plans: After a broken ankle sidelined his dream of being a soccer star, Claflin pursued acting. “I’m like a farm boy,” he says. “But I’m happy to be here.”

Photographed on Aug. 25 in Los Angeles

Updated by Elizabeth Leonard
Related Articles