Zoe Kazan

Zoe Kazan Thousands of young actresses move to New York and try to break into the grueling world of theater. Few of them, however, have the industry pedigree of Kazan, the 24-year-old granddaughter of Oscar-winning director Elia ("On the Waterfront") and the daughter of screenwriter Nicholas Kazan ("Reversal of Fortune") and screenwriter-director Robin Swicord ("The Jane Austen Book Club"). Following her stage debut last year opposite Cynthia Nixon in "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie," Kazan managed to land her first leading role in a feature, starring opposite Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in next year's period drama "Revolutionary Road," director Sam Mendes' adaptation of Richard Yates' novel. "The prospect of being in L.A. and [being] one of the millions of people living there doing the same thing scares me much more than theater," says Kazan. "There's an anonymity to L.A. as a young actress, and I think it's much easier to get lazy because there's no connective tissue except for freeways. People get lost." It's difficult to imagine Kazan, who was brought up in L.A.'s Venice and graduated from Yale, disoriented. She's about to begin previews of Manhattan Theatre Club's "Come Back, Little Sheba," which will run through March, and she's in talks to costar in George Miller's superhero feature, "Justice League of America." -- Rebecca Ascher-Walsh
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