West London actor Rhianne Barreto has been spotlighted as a rising star on a list of up-and-coming talent which features alumni such as John Boyega, Maisie Williams and Tom Holland.
Rhianne Barreto, 20, was listed as a ‘Star of Tomorrow’ on the film website Screen Daily last week, which has a successful track record of predicting the hottest new UK and Ireland talent.
She has recently finished filming for her first ever film, playing the lead role in A24’s currently untitled Pippa Bianco feature film, based on the director’s short film Share.
Speaking about her place on the ‘Stars of Tomorrow’ list, Rhianne said: “It’s kind of epic when you look at the people who have been before us, like Riz Ahmed, Dev Patel, all these people that I really rate who have my similar background and ethnicity.
“It’s quite exciting to be part of that history.”
The actress will be following in the footsteps of a long list of A24 royalty. The company has been widely credited for changing things up in the film industry, most notably when Moonlight infamously took the Best Picture Oscar from La La Land in 2017.
Speaking about being offered the role, she said: “I could not sleep. And I cried, like I couldn’t cope. It felt like a dream. I felt like if I went to sleep and woke up it wouldn’t be real.”
She added: “It’s quite exciting to be part of that legacy, and stuff like The Florida Project and Lady Bird and all these politically charged comments on society, and I’m part of that, almost Marvel Universe of A24.”
The west London born actress credits her time at the Brit School in Croydon as being a formative part of her career, calling the school phenomenal and saying it was a huge part in making her more political.
She said: “It frustrates me when young people are told they don’t care or they’re not switched on when I actually think this generation of young people is actually the most switched on we’ve ever been, and we’re the most excited for change.”
She added: “It was more than a school, it was like a life experience.”
The actress is one of nine children in her family, all of them named beginning with the letter R.
“Everyone goes ‘like the Kardashians?’” she said.
Although the upcoming feature starring Rhianne is currently under wraps, she is still feeling the excitement and privilege of the whole experience, and she still feels a sense of disbelief at what is now her reality.
“I still feel like it’s not a thing,” she said.
“I guess it’s silly but whenever I finish a job I always apply to loads of coffee shops and waitressing jobs and I never get even an interview, because as soon as you say you’re an actor they’re not interested.
“I always feel like the job that I’m on is the last job I’ll do, which is silly, but it makes me work really hard and give it my all.”
The actor explained that her role in the upcoming film was a turning point in her career.
She said: “I gave it so much of my life and it was such a beautiful and painful experience to go through because it’s such a heart wrenching story.”
Incredibly, Rhianne did not break from an American accent for a whole 70 days when she was filming in Canada.
As Rhianne has English, Indian and Portuguese in her family, she also highlighted the importance of diversity in the film industry.
She said: “I think the important part is it needs to start from the beginning.
“It needs to start from the writing and then also the casting directors being really open to seeing a whole host of difference sizes and shapes, ethnicities and backgrounds and classes.
“I think it is changing but we’re on the cusp, luckily, I’m on the cusp. But I do want it to get bigger, I do want it to snowball.”
She also emphasised that she has made it this far with mostly free education, bursaries or scholarships, and believes that funding needs to be clear and available for people from all walks of life.
Rhianne’s dreams for the future include being part of the X-Men universe and working with Ben Mendelsohn and Vanessa Kirby.
Though her humble nature kept her from discussing any predictions of fame and stardom, it’s safe to say that big things are coming for Rhianne Barreto.
Rhianne Barreto will also star in the upcoming Amazon series Hanna.
Feature photo credit: Peter Searle