ByMatthew Bailey, writer at
Husband. Father. Gamer. Cinema Lover. Mix it all together, and there I am. I love all things pop-culture and coffee; but coffee is the best.
Matthew Bailey

Katherine McNamara. This is a name to follow, especially over the next year or so as project after project come pouring onto her plate.

She made her first mark on Broadway at the age of 13 opposite Catherine Zeta-Jones and Angela Lansbury. Her stage experience continued with To Kill a Mockingbird, The Crucible, Annie, The Secret Garden and Galileo. - If that's not proof of her acting caliber then I don't know what else I need to tell you... but if you need more convincing, I have 3 reasons why she is my newest rising star.

She's beyond smart!

Straight out of Missouri, she graduated high-school with honors at 14.

By 17 she had her Bachelors Degree in Business with Honors from Drexel University. And is planning to continue her education as she is looking for an MBA program.

I was lucky to still be considered a Junior in high school at 17. Smart doesn't even come close to describing her, but she hasn't let any of that get in the way of pursuing her acting career as she is set to have two breakout roles by 2017.

The first being as Sonya in the Maze Runner Sequel opposite another rising star Dylan O'Brien. - This is one of the few YA Dystopian book-to-movies that I am genuinely excited about. I never got into Hunger Games or Divergent. I read the Giver in elementary school and loved the book but was only mildly impressed with the film. But all that aside the first Maze Runner was beautiful in my mind, and I can't wait to see both Dylan and Katherine set afire because of The Scorch Trials (pun intended). I think Katherine will gain a lot of buzz coming into and out of this movie partially because of her recent casting in this next role.

Clara Fray in Shadowhunters. An adaptation of the Mortal Instruments series, and a reboot of the panned big screen film, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. - I was semi partial to the film, but I never read the books so I never really had anything to compare it to. I liked the movie, honestly because I've been a Lily Collins fan since The Blind Side in 2009. - Regardless, I think her casting in Shadowhunters will prove to be the spark that sends her career into overdrive.

She's got 'the look' of a budding star.

Katherine will be 20 this year, shortly after she hits the screen in Maze Runner. She's not even legal to drink and she has 'the look' of a star. She's beautiful in a sort of not quite 'girl next door' way but more of a 'girl you secretly adored but never worked up the courage to ask on a date in high school, and now you feel like you missed your chance even though you still run into her on occasion and she remembers your name from high school and still flips her hair in that way that makes your heart skip a beat for a moment and you completely lose track of what you were thinking about because shes smiling and then because you don't say anything she laughs awkwardly and you realize that you just made a fool of yourself and are beating yourself up on the inside and feel like crying' way. But I don't have any experience with that... Okay leave me alone! Anyways, where was I?

Oh yeah, She's got 'that look'. She just carries herself in a way that makes you feel her confidence and that's huge for a budding actress. Producers and Directors take note of the female leads that just bring that confidence in their abilities and in their own personalities. And that's what she brings to the table. Also the ability to maintain that beauty no matter how dressed up or down she may be as well as her overall style. She's been a red-head, brunette and a blonde and pulled off all three looks easily adding to her ability to carry herself in a way that few actresses effectively can.

She has passions outside of acting.

I know, I know. That's sacrilegious! An actor must devote themselves wholly over to their craft and hone their skills at all times.

Katherine is much more than just an actress, she has many passions and wants to work towards her other passions as well as become a better actress. She loves all forms of dancing including ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, lyrical, waltz and even hula. She plays guitar and piano and being on Broadway shows that she has the vocals for singing on top of everything else.

All in all, having these other passions is something that will help set her apart and open up other venues that may not have been available if she wasn't passionate about other skills.

Katherine truly is a well rounded actress and is bound for great things which is why she's one my most anticipated rising stars.


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