2011 brought us many good things; the death of Osama Bin Laden, the release of the iPhone 4S, the, um…beginning of health care reform? Did that kick in yet?
Alright, we can argue the merits of those watershed events to death, but there is one constant, every year, that is far more worthy of our time to reflect on and debate. That is, of course, the hottest female newcomers of the 2011 calendar year. From the modeling world to TV and film to sports, here is a list of females who caught our attention this past year and we're hoping to get to know better in 2012.
While she lost out on the coveted cover of the 2011 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition to Irina Shayk (an announcement made on the Late Show With David Letterman), 19-year-old model Kate Upton did just fine this year following her appearance in the annual magazine man bible. The former equestrienne champ went on to model for Victoria’s Secret, appear on the TV show Tosh.0 and in the film Tower Heist, and even has a small role in the upcoming Three Stooges reboot as a hot, scantily-clad nun. Of course, she’s best known for her viral YouTube video, adorably doing the Dougie at a Clippers game. The clip single-handedly made up for years of videos of corny white girls dancing on the Internet. Amen.
Her show Community is currently on an “extended hiatus,” but that shouldn’t be enough to stop a legion of fanboys from worshiping at the altar of Alison Brie. While she is best known as the studious, skirt-sporting Annie Edison on the cult NBC comedy, Brie is also set to reprise her role as Trudy Campbell in the upcoming fifth season of Mad Men. And after a part in this year’s Scream 4, the 28-year-old actress will appear in next year’s Save the Date and The Five-Year Engagement. So fear not, everyone’s favorite Jewish-American Princess (the good kind) is going nowhere in 2012.
In a year that started with an Oscar nomination for Best Actress (Winter’s Bone), Jennifer Lawrence looked amazing at the annual award show in a classy red dress. She went on to don blue scaled skin as Mystique in X-Men: First Class, which as Rebecca Romijn taught us, is a tough look to pull off. Only 21, the actress will make a huge leap next year in the film adaptation of hit novel The Hunger Gamesa role many fans thought she wasn't right for until Entertainment Weekly debuted a photo of her as the character in May. If the film franchise becomes huge (a la Harry Potter and Twilight), Lawrence will become a household name like Kristen Stewart, only less awkward in TV interviews.
Another sexy mutant from X-Men: First Class, Zoe Kravitz, the daughter of rocker Lenny Kravitz and former Cosby Show kid Lisa Bonet, has matured into quite the sultry-eyed beauty. Having modeled for Elle and Vera Wang (your girlfriend knows who that is), Kravitz doesn’t only share the acting bug she got from her mom (and lately her dad, who coincidentally will appear in The Hunger Games with Lawrence). The 23-year-old also fronts the band Elevator Fight, which…sounds like a difficult place to fight. The band seems to play gigs sporadically, so stay tuned to their Twitter feed folks!
Replacing Megan Fox as the female lead in Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley had some pretty big (and crazy) shoes to fill. The British model, best known for being a Victoria’s Secret Angel, made her acting debut in the summer blockbuster and, while the reviews were mixed, the movie went on to become the fourth highest grossing film of all time. (Not too shabby for your first gig.) The leggy 24-year-old is also currently dating action star Jason Statham, who is 20 years her senior (44). As if the man needed more reasons to be awesome.
The U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team made headlines this year for nearly winning the 2011 FIFA World Cup, losing out to Japan in a heartbreaking shootout final. While the team ultimately fell short, the inspiration they provided for their country was monumental, and Alex Morgan (the team’s youngest player at 22) cemented her status with two goals in the final two games. She also happens to be very good looking and looks cute wearing a headband. Morgan also plays for the Western New York Flash of the Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league and should be representing her country at the next Women’s World Cup (2015) in Canada.
In the world of MMA, the role of the Octagon Girl provides some much needed eye candyand contrast to the dudes beating each other into a bloody pulp in the ring, er, Octagon. This past year, no girl has made quite an impact as 22-year-old up-and-comer Kelli Hutcherson of the Strikeforce organization. Dubbed Miss Strikeforce 2011, the blond bombshell is an expert at showing off her ass-ets. You can check her out at several Strikeforce events in 2012.
A cast member of the Real World: San Diego from all the way back in 2004, Jamie Chung did what many castoffs of the MTV reality franchise tend to dopursue an acting career. Lucky for the 28-year-old San Francisco native, she’s talented and endearing enough to sustain success. Chung had a busy summer, with a starring role in the action chick flick Sucker Punch, as well as a supporting role as Stu’s (Ed Helms) fiancée in The Hangover Part II. Next year, she’ll star in the really cool sounding martial arts flick The Man with the Iron Fists (directed by the RZA and starring Russell Crowe), as well as the not-so-cool sounding Premium Rush, a Joseph Gordon-Levitt thriller about…bike messengers.
Glee Girls (Naya Rivera and Dianna Agron)
It’s OK fellas. You don’t have to admit to watching Glee, to acknowledge that these two actresses are hot. We aren’t here to judge (unless that is, judging the hotness of the ladies on this list). Having said that, Naya River and Dianna Agron, who play Santana Lopez and Quinn Fabray, respectively, on the hit Fox show can both sing and dance their hearts out. And better yet, they’re usually doing it in skimpy cheerleading outfits. In real life, Rivera is heavily involved in charities while Agron is an animal activist, so it appears as if they are good human beings as well.
Alyson “Aly” Michalka
Growing up as a child actress/musician (she’s in a band, 78violet, with sister Amanda), Aly Michalka entered the sexy stratosphere this year thanks to her role on the CW cheerleading drama Hellcats, in which she showed off her amazing abs every week in midriff-baring cheerleading uniforms. Unfortunately, the show did not make it to a second season this fall, but Michalka is a multi-talented youngster, who also starred in the fall thriller The Roommate (playing a character named Tracy Morgan, if you can believe it).
It’s hard to be the most desirable female in a film also starring Natalie Portman, but when you’re talking about Jaimie Alexander, the debate is as close as it gets. The two actresses, of course, shared the screen in this summer’s super hero hit Thor, in which Alexander played the warrior (princess?) Sif. The 27-year-old actress, also known for her role on ABC Family’s Kyle XY, is no stranger to action, having been one of a few girls on her high school wrestling team. In a no-holds-barred fight with Portman, our money is on Alexander.