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What hit in 2011: "Bridesmaids" and "Mike and Molly"
What's next: Re-teaming with "Bridesmaids" producer Judd Apatow for "This is Forty," and continuing with "Molly."
Lowdown: After years of solid, underrated work on "Gilmore Girls" and "Samantha Who?," McCarthy became a household name this year. Stealing a film from a stellar cast including Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph and Rose Byrne is no mean feat, but McCarthy did excactly that this summer in "Bridesmaids." She followed it up by winning an Emmy for her performance on the CBS comedy "Mike and Molly." Not only hysterically funny, she's able to add an instant, sympathetic believability to even small roles.