Breakout Stars of 2008

A year ago they were strangers. Now they're household names. Entertainment Weekly rounded up the small galaxy of actors and musicians who exploded into the Hollywood universe this year. Here's an excerpt:

ROBERT PATTINSON
Cast as Edward Cullen, the gentlemanly vampire of Stephenie Meyer's Twilight, the 22-year-old British actor became instant bedroom-poster material — before he even spoke a word on screen. Previously known for playing earnest Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Pattinson seems unfazed by this new mania, which has involved Twihards lingering around his Los Angeles apartment. ''These little teenage girls will sometimes be camped outside, but it's fine. There's something about people who like this book — they're always extraordinarily polite. If they were old men, I'd probably move.''

ESTELLE
Her U.S. debut, Shine, features collaborations with everyone from Mark Ronson to will.i.am. Her Kanye West duet, 'American Boy, has notched more than 1.4 million digital sales. And she recently held it down as the only woman on tour with Gym Class Heroes and the Roots. So how does the British soul siren, 28, look back at 2008? ''I'll remember it for never being in my house,'' she jokes. But that's not a complaint. ''It took me four friggin' years to get this s--- out. I can't be mad at anything right now.''

TRISTAN WILDS
Wilds, who projects an easy warmth as Dixon on The CW's reboot of 90210, had an important decision to make before filming began: whether to follow in the follicular footsteps of previously sideburned alums Luke Perry and Jason Priestley. ''I'm like, 'Hmm. Should I go with the ham hocks or not?''' the 19-year-old says with a laugh. But the former Wire actor is far more interested in mirroring the career of Will Smith, one of the producers of this year's The Secret Life of Bees, in which Wilds costarred. He's got the TV zip code right. After all, Smith's big break came after he moved west and became the prince of a town called Bel-Air.

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