Breaking out is the stuff of dreams for millions of aspiring actors. And for their managers or agents, too. For some performers, transformation follows years of treading the boards — hundreds of auditions that end up in minor roles before serendipity, or the right director, that allows their star quality to shine through in a role that was just right.

For others, success is fairy-tale, overnight sensation stuff. The social media and streaming era means that major new stars can be hatched from one day to the next. The producers of Netflix’s “Squid Game” have spoken of knowing that they had delivered a major hit within hours of the show going to air. But that spotlight can also be harsh.

Variety’s international writers have picked out a handful of 2021 hatchlings who few honestly saw coming, but who we trust will continue grabbing headlines for years to come. See the full list below.