12 Breakout Stars From Sundance 2016

From an 11-year-old girl to the Meryl Streep of microbudget indies, meet your new Sundance stars

Morgan Saylor, 'White Girl'
12
Michael Simmonds/Sundance2/12

Morgan Saylor, 'White Girl'

There are so many remarkable things about Saylor's ferocious lead performance in White Girl that it's hard to know where to begin. Obliterating whatever assumptions you might have from watching her on Homeland, the 21-year-old plays a fresh-faced college sophomore named Leah who moves to Queens, falls for a square-jawed Puerto Rican drug dealer, and finds herself stuck with a kilo of unsold blow when her new beau gets pinched. Saylor's fully weaponized embodiment of racial privilege always saves the movie from sensationalism, even as Leah snorts her body weight in cocaine and tries to become the Tony Montana of lower Manhattan. Vulnerable, invincible, empowered, and pathetic all at once, few actresses have better navigated the difference between being naked and being exposed — and it looks like we ain't seen nothing yet.

Back to Top