The BAFTA Rising Star Award, created to highlight new talent in the industry, is the only Bafta voted for by the public. This year, Naomi Ackie (Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance With Somebody), Sheila Atim (The Woman King), Aimee Lou Wood (Living), Emma Mackey (Emily), and Daryl McCormack (Good Luck to You, Leo Grande) have been nominated for the prize.
Ackie, who plays Whitney Houston in a new film about the singer’s life, has won a string of awards for her work on screen. Including Screen International’s Stars of Tomorrow and an Independent Film Award. She also starred in Zoe Kravitz’s directorial debut Pussy Island and the upcoming Mickey 17, from Bong Joon-Ho.
Aimee Lou Wood
Aimee Lou Wood is best known for her role as ‘Aimee Gibbs’ in the hit television series Sex Education. She has also starred in Oliver Hermanus’ sex comedy Living, screened at the Sundance Film Festival last year, and several other films.
The actress has also appeared in The Electrical Life of Louis Wain, a film about Louis Wain (Benedict Cumberbatch). And the sex-positive drama Good Luck to You, Leo Grande, has been gaining much attention this year. She has a long list of acclaimed roles and is set to continue her impressive run in the film industry as she appears in Barbie later this year.
Emma Mackey won this category for her lead role in Emily. She has also had several acclaimed roles in other films and TV shows. Including playing a teenage nanny in Oliver Hermanus’ sex-comedy Living, starring Bill Nighy. She is due to appear in several other projects, including a film version of the cult classic Alice in Wonderland.
Mackey has also been nominated for her lead role in a new drama based on the life of renowned artist Edward Hopper called The Night Is Our Time. She is currently filming the role of a social worker in a new BBC drama called The House at the End of the Street, which she stars in along with Richard E Grant and Julie Delpy.
In addition to acting, she is a director, with her short film ‘Sugar’ winning the British Student Film Festival’s Best New Talent Award in 2011. She was recently announced to be one of the judges for the new BBC series The Secret History.