Summer's Hottest Star: Emma Stone

Frying pan. Cookie sheet.” Emma Stone sighs as she points out two fresh scars on her arms, one covered by, appropriately, a Spider-Man bandage. “I’m not very good at baking yet,” she says. “But I’m trying!”

Fortunately, pastry isn’t what pays her bills: At 22, the quick-witted actress is Hollywood’s new go-to girl for coveted roles: She flirts with Ryan Gosling in Crazy, Stupid, Love, upends southern society as heroine Skeeter in this month’s adaptation of the bestseller The Help, and is playing Spider-Man’s girlfriend Gwen Stacy. (“Well, that’s nice!” is all she’ll say of rumors she’s dating costar Andrew Garfield.) Stone’s appeal? As Help costar Allison Janney puts it, “She can be completely goofy and gawky and geeky, and she can be drop-dead gorgeous.” The Arizona native, who names Diane Keaton as her idol, decided to become an actor “in the middle of sixth-period social studies my freshman year of high school. I was doodling, and I had a moment of clarity. Or lunacy.” She moved to Los Angeles with her mom, Krista, a homemaker, earned buzz in hipster comedies like Superbad and Zombieland and broke out as a teen who fakes being promiscuous in last year’s Easy A. She now lives in New York City-with a “tiny kitchen,” she moans-and wonders how she’ll ever top her dream job, hosting Saturday Night Live last October. “I’m throwing in the towel!” she says. “I’m completely satisfied for the rest of my life.”

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