She's a little girl with a big name -- and an even bigger claim to fame. She's Quvenzhané Wallis, she's 9 years old, and she's now the youngest girl ever to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress. What's even more amazing is that she was only 5 when she auditioned for the film for which she's nominated, The Beasts of the Southern Wild, and 6 when she filmed it. Beasts has also been nominated for Best Picture and Best Director.
If Wallis (excuse me if I call her by her easier-to-type last name) wins, she will be the youngest person ever to win in any acting category. But she's got some stiff (and much older) competition: Naomi Watts, Jessica Chastain, Jennifer Lawrence, and Emmanuelle Riva.
Some other incredibly talented and very young actors and actresses who have been honored by the Academy include:
Tatum O'Neal. She remains the youngest person to win a Best Supporting Actress award. She was 10 at the time she won for Paper Moon, which she starred in with her father, Ryan.
Shirley Temple. She won an "Academy Juvenile Award" at age 6. They stopped giving those out in 1961. Maybe they sounded sort of condescending. But at age 6, Shirley is still the youngest to receive an Oscar of any type.
Keisha-Castle Hughes. Up until Wallis was nominated, Keisha was the youngest Best Actress nominee, which she received at 11.
Justin Henry. He was 8 years old when he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for Kramer vs. Kramer.
Anna Paquin. The True Blood star was once a child star, earning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for The Piano at 11.
Whether or not Quvenzhané wins (okay, I cut and pasted her name), she's got a lot to look forward to. Her next movie stars Brad Pitt and Michael Fassbender. Damn, how lucky can a girl get?!
Can you think of any other incredibly talented children?
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