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The AP names its Breakthrough Entertainers of 2019

The dictionary defines “breakthrough” as a “sudden advance,” but The Associated Press' Breakthrough Entertainers of the Year spent lots of time preparing for their star-making moments.

Megan Thee Stallion spent years rapping while also attending college. “The Peanut Butter Falcon'' star Zack Gottsagen dreamed of being an actor since age 3, and has been working toward that goal. And while “The Boys''” Jack Quaid, the son of Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid, grew up right in Hollywood, but he felt pressure to prove he actually had talent and wasn't riding on his parent's coattails.

Megan Thee Stallion, Gottsagen and Quaid join actors Florence Pugh, Kaitlyn Dever, Barbie Ferreira and Jonathan Majors on the AP's third annual list of entertainers who memorably broke through to the mainstream this year. Pugh has been seen throughout the year, from the thriller “Midsommar” to this month's “Little Women.” Majors made his mark in the critically acclaimed “The Last Black Man in San Francisco.” Ferreira's transition from modeling to acting paid off with her star-making turn in the gritty teen drama “”Euphoria." Dever stood out not only for the witty flick “Booksmart” but for her role as a sex crime victim in the searing Netflix drama “Unbelievable.”

While 2019 marked their breakout year, expect more to come from these talented performers. As Megan Thee Stallion says: “I know I’m not where I want to be at yet, so I’m still trying to grind."

___ For more on AP’s 2019 class of Breakthrough Entertainers, please visit: https://apnews.com/APBreakthroughEntertainers