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Thread: Hollywood's Hottest New Action Stars!

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    Cool Hollywood's Hottest New Action Stars!

    'Conan's' Jason Momoa, 'Colombiana's' Zoe Saldana and the new faces of action





    JASON MOMOA is ready to take the mantle of an action hero with Friday's release of 'Conan the Barbarian.' But he isn’t the only actor ready to make the Schwarzeneggers and Stallones of the world more Expendable. Here are some of the other fresh faces ready to reach for the top rung of the action genre in the next 12 months.




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    Though ZOE SALDANA never really got proper accolades for her very physical performance-capture turn in 'Avatar,' the 33-year-old Queens product will get her chance to show off her action chops in the revenge thriller 'Colombiana,' opening Aug. 26.

    'I saw the trailer for 'Colombiana,' and I thought Zoe Saldana did an incredible job with the action scenes,' says kung fu movie veteran Cynthia Rothrock. 'They were very believable.'




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    Director Steven Soderbergh was flipping through channels when he stumbled on a mixed martial arts match featuring GINA CARANO. Entranced with her presence, he wondered why no one had built an action movie around her. So he did.

    The result, 'Haywire,' which opens in January, is a revenge thriller in which there is no need for cuts to stunt doubles or wire-work to embellish the action. To be blunt, Carano, 29, might be able to beat up every one else on this list - at the same time.

    Co-star Channing Tatum learned that the hard way when he balked at hitting a girl with a ketchup bottle during filming.

    '[Carano] called me a female p-word and then I had to do it for my 'manity,'' he said at San Diego Comic-Con last month. 'But then she hit me twice as hard and I didn’t want to hit her anymore.'




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    After his breakthrough in 'Inception,' TOM HARDY, 32, proved to be dream casting for a number of upcoming action vehicles - including taking over Mel Gibson’s iconic role in the reboot of 'Mad Max.'

    First up, the British Hardy stars as a mixed martial arts fi ghter forced to battle his brother in a match in 'Warrior,' then next year, he’ll take on a more formidable foe - Batman - as the villainous Bane in 'The Dark Knight Rises.'




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    The Hawaiian born MAGGIE Q broke into movies by punching and kicking her way through the Hong Kong film industry, before breaking through on this side of the Pacific in 'Mission Impossible III.' But she's best known as the title assassin in CW's 'Nikita.'





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    Just a few short years ago, CHRIS HEMSWORTH was a mild-mannered surfer in Australia. Of course that was before the then-unknown 6-foot-4 actor proved worthy of wielding Thor's hammer - a role he will reprise for next year's Marvel Studios super-team up 'The Avengers .'

    'We met some wonderful actors, I have to say, who might have made wonderful Thors, but Chris was able to show us an ability to revel in Thor’s power and enjoy his strength,' 'Thor' director Kenneth Branagh told the Daily News.

    Proving lightning can indeed strike multiple times, Hemsworth, who just turned 28, is now one of the hottes young action stars in Hollywood - with starring roles in the upcoming remake of 'Red Dawn' (in the Patrick Swayze role) and opposite Kristen Stewart in next year's grim fairy tale 'Snow White and the Huntsman.'




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    Hemsworth's Avengers teammate JEREMY RENNER - he plays the super-archer Hawkeye - is also destined for action movie superstardom. First, the 40-year-old Renner will go toe-to-toe with Tom Cruise in this year's 'Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol.' Then, before Renner can catch his breath, he’ll be getting quite the cardio workout replacing Matt Damon as the titular badass in next year's 'The Bourne Legacy.'




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    Until JENNIFER LAWRENCE, fresh off her Oscar nomination for 'Winter’s Bone,' came in and aced her screen test, there was actually a point where Lionsgate worried about who to cast as the lead for 'The Hunger Games.' The adaptation of the first book in Suzanne Collins' best-selling series about teens forced to hunt each other for sport in a dystopian future is considered the biggest potential franchise since 'Twilight.'

    'I've been doing this a really long time and this is one of those once every 20 years or more actresses that come along,' says Joe Drake, Lionsgate cochief operating officer. 'You watch what she can do and embody a character. And the minute you saw her screen test, you were watching Katniss Everdeen.'

    Lawrence, who’s just turning 21 this week, already has a tour of duty on a major superhero franchise, as a blue mutant in 'X-Men: First Class,' under her belt.



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    HENRY CAVILL, a 28-year-old Brit, may have shone in 'The Tudors,' but he’s hitting the big time in a single bound after snagging the role of Superman in 'Man of Steel.' Audiences won't have to wait until 2013, though, for a taste of Cavill’s action chops - he stars as Greek hero Theseus in this year’s sword and sandal epic 'Immortals.'




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    SAM WORTHINGTON toiled as a brick layer a few years ago in Australia before striking it big in 'Terminator: Salvation,' followed by the biggest box office hit of all time, 'Avatar.' He plays a Mossad agent in the upcoming, 'The Debt,' and is hard at work on a sequel to last year's 'Clash of the Titans.' But he works as if it's a matter of time before he's back laying bricks.

    'I'm a 32-year-old Australian, mate. I'm pretty down to earth,' he told the Daily News two years ago. 'I don't have a car. I still bum rides off me mates.'



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    Fellow Australian ANNA TORV has gone from fringe actress to the star of Fox's 'Fringe.'




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    When AMC suggested British actor ANDREW LINCOLN for the starring role on 'The Walking Dead,' then-showrunner Frank Darabont asked, 'You mean the guy from 'Love Actually?'' But Lincoln won him over, proving equally adept with an axe, a gun or a one-liner.




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    If he didn't shred his knee as a highly touted hockey prospect, TAYLOR KITSCH might be playing in the NHL right now. But the 30-year-old Canadian is now ready for the big leagues in Hollywood after having graduated from playing a high school football star on 'Friday Night Lights' to leading-man status with the upcoming 'Battleship.' And that’s just a warmup for the title role in next year's 'John Carter,' the long-awaited adaptation of pulp writer Edgar Rice Burroughs' second-most famous creation after Tarzan. If all goes according to plan, it could be the beginning of a major sci-fi franchise.

    'I'm the last guy on that set that deserves to have an ego because you have a Willem Dafoe, a [director Andrew] Stanton, and a [Mark] Strong, all these people you’re working with every day,' Kitsch told The News in April.




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    The 'Transporter' himself, JASON STATHAM, is now the reigning king of action movies, after Sylvestor Stallone passed the torch in 'The Expendables.'




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    Though Rooney Mara will be playing 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo' in the American remake, the original tattooed lady, NOOMI RAPACE, caught Hollywood's notice. She's starring in the upcoming 'Sherlock Holmes' sequel.





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