Breakout Stars Of 2009

People who had the best year EVER.  Each years sees a crop of fresh-faces.  Some are brand new the biz, some have a few years under their belt.  2009 was the year of the lace face mask, the sparkly guitar, the kid from Disney and the dude with a penchant for eyeshadow.  Socialite Life salutes the breakout stars of 2009.

Taylor Swift:  After ruling the charts this year with “Love Story” and “You Belong With Me,” Taylor Swift’s thunder was stolen after Kanye West stormed the stage at the MTV VMAs to let everyone know Beyonce should have won.  Oof.  Beyonce, every the gracious winner, beckoned Swift back to the stage later in the show so she could give a proper thank-you to her fans and drink in the sweet taste of victory. Sister also won a few other awards (Country Music Awards, Billboard Awards, Teen Choice Awards) and is up for eight Grammys.  Ah yes.  And Swift hosted SNL. And she dated Taylor Lautner for a wee bit, then broke his little werewolf heart.  Young love. So fragile.

Gabourey Sidibe-Beginner’s luck? Mayhaps.  Sidibe walked into an open audition and walked out with a starring role in one of the year’s most talked-about movies, Precious: Based On The Novel By Sapphire.  The actress, with no prior acting experience, blew away director Lee Daniels with her moving audition.  The movie is generating major Oscar buzz and has been nominated for a number of Golden Globes including Best Picture and Best Actress.  Hurrah!

Mo’Nique: Another star from Precious generating lots of Oscar buzz is Mo’Nique.  The comedian has been in show business for years and even has her own talk show on BET.  But the former host of Flavor Of Love Girls: Charm School really showed her dramatic chops when she played Precious’s down-and-out mother.   Mo’Nique tapped into the abuse she suffered as a child to really become the monster she portrayed.

Adam Lambert: Last year’s Idol runner-up wasted no tears over being second bananas.  Lambert hammed it up hither and thither in 2009 with a hottie-tottie performance at the American Music Awards, an adorable boy-toy (whom he later split from) and an over-the-top photo shoot for Rolling Stone.  And he’s gay.

Cast of Glee: Best. Show. Ever.  The writing, the singing, the dancing.  Fox struck television gold when it aired Glee for the first time last spring (a test pilot, to see how the audience would respond).  Well, we likie.  Glee makes the nation’s heart explode with song and dance.   Golden Globe-nominated Lea Michele has blown us away week after week with her sparkly pipes and Jane Lynch was born to wear that red track suit.  We’ll have to suffer through American Idol before we’re granted new episodes.  But we’ll sit patiently.  Because we believe in the power of music and laughter.

Lady Gaga: No one made us do a double-take more than Lady Gaga this year.  She wore bubbles.  She wore Kermit The Frog.  She wore neckbraces.  If you handed her your discarded Christmas wrapping paper, she would fashion it into jumper. The Lady matches the eccentricity with bitchin’ beats.  One of the year’s freshest faces in music,  Gaga started with “Just Dance.”  Then it was “Poker Face,” then “Love Game.”  She graced Gossip Girl with her presence and introduced us to the highly addictive single, “Bad Romance.”  I don’t care if Gaga frightens me a smidge.  She da bomb.

Shia LeBeouf: I remember when this whipper-snapper was on Disney Channel’s Even Stevens.  Back then he impressed audiences with his comedic chops.  Now that Lebeouf has a few box-office hits under his belt, the Transformers star will star in the Wall Street sequel with Michael Douglas, out in 2010.  Just cut down on the ciggys, Shia.  It’s a very eighties look.  And not the good kind.  The bad kind that has consquences.