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Photos: Jessica Chastain’s Breakout Year

From ‘The Debt’ and ‘The Help’ to ‘Coriolanus,’ the films that helped make her a star

Jessica Chastain

Laurie Sparham/2011 Focus Features

Chastain starts with Sam Worthington in John Madden’s espionage thriller. Of the movie, Peter Travers wrote, "Chastain (a nifty match-up with [Helen] Mirren) is a live wire, and her scenes with [Martin] Csokas and Worthington have a spark the later scenes lack. No matter. The Debt holds you in its grip."

Jessica Chastain

Scott Gardner, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

‘Take Shelter’ (2011)

Chastain as Samantha and Tova Stewart as Hannah in this year's Take Shelter. Peter Travers wrote, "Chastain's quietly implosive performance breaks your heart as she searches Curtis' [Michael Sheen] eyes for the man she married."

Jessica Chastain

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

‘Take Shelter’ Premiere

Chastain signs autographs at the Take Shelter Premiere at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival.

Jessica Chastain

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

‘Coriolanus’ Premiere

Gerard Butler, Chastain, director Ralph Fiennes and Brian Cox at the 'Coriolanus' premiere at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival.

Jessica Chastain

Karl Walter/Getty Images

‘The Tree Of Life’ Premiere

Actress Jessica Chastain and actor Brad Pitt depart The Tree Of Life premiere during the 64th Annual Cannes Film Festival at Palais des Festivals on May 16th, 2011. Peter Travers called Chastain "radiant" and said she gave her role as the mother of two boys a "nurturing purity." 

Jessica Chastain

Dale Robinette ©DreamWorks II Distribution Co., LLC

‘The Help’ (2011)

Jessica Chastain as Celia Foote and Octavia Spencer as Minny Jackson in 'The Help'