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Dec 22, 2014

12 Stars Over 30 We Fell In Love With In 2014

You don't have to be in your twenties to have a banner year. Even though it feels that way sometimes.

1. Phil Klay, 31

Penguin Press / Hannah Dunphy

Why: After serving in Iraq as a public affairs officer, his debut short story collection, Redeployment, won the National Book Award for fiction.

2. Gaby Hoffmann, 32


Why: The former child star (remember Sleepless in Seattle?) has been quiet over the last decade, and is now seemingly everywhere. In 2014 alone she starred in Transparent, Girls, Wild, Obvious Child, and Veronica Mars.

3. Allison Tolman, 33


Why: Almost a complete unknown until landing the lead role in Fargo as Molly Solverson, a job that earned her a Golden Globe nomination.

4. Carrie Coon, 33


Why: It was a big year for Carrie Coon — she stole the spotlight in both her first television series, The Leftovers, and her first movie, Gone Girl.

5. Caitriona Balfe, 35


Why: The Irish actress and former model was a relative unknown with only a few credits to her name until her breakout role in Starz's Outlander.

6. Cristela Alonzo, 35


Why: The stand-up comic's ABC show Cristela is both a breakthrough for her and for diversity on television — the show was widely praised for its nonstereotypical representation of Latinos.

7. Billy Eichner, 36

Funny or Die

Why: He earned a cult following as the manic street interviewer on Billy on the Street, but broke through in a big way after a scene-stealing appearance on the Primetime Emmy Awards, a recurring role on Parks and Recreation, and being signed to the Hulu series Difficult People.

8. Run the Jewels (Killer Mike, 39, and El-P, 39)


Why: After working under the mainstream radar for decades, their second album, Run the Jewels 2, brought critical and commercial success to the duo in a rare mid-career turnaround. Pitchfork ranked it the No. 1 Album of the Year.

9. Jennifer Kent (age unknown)

Getty Images Larry Busacca

Why: The first-time director and former actress earned raves for her breakout horror movie, The Babadook, but she doesn't reveal her age. “You can work it out,” she told the Washington Post (she allegedly went to acting school with Cate Blanchett, 45).

10. Dave Bautista, 45

Marvel Studios

Why: Known primarily as a wrestling star with only a few minor credits to his name, Bautista broke out in the summer blockbuster Guardians of the Galaxy and was quickly hired to play the villain in the next James Bond movie.

11. Sarah Koenig, 45

Meredith Heuer/This American Life

Why: The longtime This American Life journalist created a complete internet freak-out every week with her utterly addictive podcast Serial.

12. Barbara Rosenblat (age unknown)


Why: Rosenblat is one of the most renowned audiobook narrators in America, but most now know her as Miss Rosa, the thieving prisoner with cancer in Orange Is the New Black. BuzzFeed has reached out for confirmation of Rosenblat's age.

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