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Aliens, Synths, And A.I. Engineers Made For Some Of The Hottest Sci-Fi Stars Of 2016

Weeknights 7e 4p

InnerSpace is counting down their 30 favourite sci-fi stars of 2016 on December 23 and we can’t argue with their picks. Actors like Felicity Jones, Michael Fassbender, and Rami Malek definitely made their mark on the science-fiction-scape this year but we want to recognize a few names that might have flown under the radar. Here are six honourable mentions to add to the list:


1 & 2. Carrie-Anne Moss and Gemma Chan


It’s so cool to see sci-fi icon Moss in a starring role on a series as good as Humans. While we loved her in Jessica Jones, it’s her turn as Dr. Athena Morrow on the Channel 4 show that’s rekindled our obsession with the actor. Is she good? Is she evil? Does she care about anything other than finding a suitable host for her bot-daughter? We can’t wait to find out.

For two seasons now, Moss’ co-star Chan has been the highlight of every scene she’s in. We’re guessing that it was her work as the incredibly convincing conscious Synth Mia/Anita that won her a recent part in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.


3. Katherine Kelly


Veteran Doctor Who writer Patrick Ness’ Who spinoff, Class, was supposed to be about a group of Coal Hill Academy high schoolers besieged by aliens. Instead, the show was totally stolen by Kelly in the role of Ms. Quill (an alien herself). In the penultimate episode, Quill accepts a challenge she knows will end in freedom or death—it’s the best episode of the season (and that’s taking into account the finale’s genuinely shocking reveal).


4. Amy Adams


Despite her Justice League pedigree and a substantial role in Spike Jonze’s futuristic Her, you probably don’t think of Amy Adams as a genre star. Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival changed that. Playing a linguist with military ties, Adams blew our minds through her character’s revelations about space, time, and alien invasions. We’re calling it: Arrival was the best sci-fi movie of 2016.


5. Dominique Tipper


It wasn’t clear who’d be left standing at the end of The Expanse’s first season. We’re so happy that Tipper’s mysterious Naomi Nagata was among the survivors (for now, at least). 2016 also saw the actor add to the sci-fi/fantasy section of her CV with roles in the Colm McCarthy (Sherlock, Doctor Who) superfun dystopian zombie flick, The Girl with All the Gifts, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.


6. Anna Taylor-Joy


Anyone who caught Taylor-Joy in her breakout role in the low-budget, slow-moving (in the creepiest, best possible way), The Witch likely knew that they were being introduced to a future star. The 20-year-old’s sci-fi follow-up, Morgan, in which she starred opposite Paul Giamatti and Kate Mara, wasn’t as well-received—still, it got better reviews than Suicide Squad. With three upcoming horror movies set for release in 2017 (including M. Night Shyamalan’s next project, Split), we’re excited to see what she’ll do with a return to the horror genre.

Find out who made InnerSpace’s list of the 30 Hottest Sci-Fi Stars of the year on December 23, 6e 3p.