Fresh Faces '94

updated 12/26/1994 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/26/1994 AT 01:00 AM EST

The 22-year-old bespectacled veejay proved outrageous even by MTV standards. Whether dissing Bill Clinton or simulating sex with a microphone, Kennedy rarely minds her manners. "One reason they hired me," she says, "was because I say—and do—what-ever's on my mind." No relation to the venerable family from Massachusetts, the former L.A. radio personality is probably the only Kennedy with a GOP elephant tattooed on her hip. Last year she was voted the network's most unpopular veejay. But she may be growing on her constituency. "People used to use expletives when talking to me," she says. And now? "Well, I guess they've all gone to charm school."

Alicia Silverstone
Hollywood's newest femme fatale won two MTV Movie Awards last June for Best Breakthrough Performance and Best Villain in the film The Crush. But Alicia (that's Alee-see-a) is perhaps more recognizable as the bad girl in Aerosmith's Crazy, Amazing and Cryin' videos (in which she successively shoplifts, hitchhikes and bungee-jumps off a bridge). Following in the spiked heels of Sharon Stone and Heather Locklear, the emerald-eyed 18-year-old has five films due out next year. But Alicia's not content to be a babe. "I'd rather be seen as an actress," she says, "than as a pretty little body."

Oliver McCall
It was a one-two punch that landed him the World Boxing Council heavyweight title this fail, ending 13 years of hard times during which he spent one winter sleeping in a broken-down van. Born on Chicago's South Side, McCall was best known as Mike Tyson's former sparring partner until Sept. 24, when he knocked out Lennox Lewis in round 2 at London's Wembley Arena. With the deposed Tyson's scheduled release from jail in May, an expected matchup with McCall could draw $100 million in a single night. "If I die tomorrow," says McCall, 29, "I know I've been blessed."

Claire Danes
She personified teen angst as the 15-year-old star of ABC's My So-Called Life. The series, about the hell that is high school, was hailed by critics as one of the best TV shows ever, and Danes has already leaped beyond its disappointing showing in the ratings. As the ill-fated Beth (opposite Susan Sarandon and Winona Ryder) in this month's Little Women remake, "she'll break your heart," promises director Gillian Armstrong. In the meantime, showbiz shows no signs of breaking Danes's spirit: "I love it a lot more than I hate it. I'm in for the long haul."

Quentin Tarantino
The red-hot director had an infectious enthusiasm for blood and guts long before he had a hit with Pulp Fiction. "He was the type who could sell you a date in the electric chair." recalls the owner of the L.A. video store where Tarantino clerked just four years ago. Now the 31-year-old high school dropout has more deals than he can count. "Quentin was always a great talker," according to a friend. "The only difference now is that everybody's listening."

Sheryl Crow
Who would buy Tuesday Night Music Club? Sheryl Crow had an even bigger worry: "I didn't know if anyone would hear it." After singing backup on Michael Jackson's Bad tour, Crow had been rejected by nearly every major label; she began '94 playing in bars. But in November, her album went double platinum, and Crow, 30, appeared with the Rolling Stones. "It's happened," she says,' 'the way I imagined it as a kid.

Richard Tyler
In the year since Richard Tyler became design director at Anne Klein, sales have doubled. So have the frequent-flyer miles of the designer, 47, who jets between his Manhattan base and L.A., where he started a collection under his own name in 1988. Now working women, as well as stars like Julia Roberts, wear Tyler's clothes. "When I walk to work," he says, "people recognize me and cheer me on."

Dominique Dawes
At the National Gymnastics Championships in August, Dominique Dawes swept all five gold medals—something even Mary Lou Retton could not manage 10 years ago. But a question looms: Will Dawes, 18, be too old for 1996 Olympic gold? "As long as my body holds up," she says, "I don't think there should be any problems." Even without injury, Dawes's body could undermine her in this sport of wonderwisps. At 15, she was 4'7" and 75 lbs.; since then she has grown five inches and added 20 pounds. But Dawes, who lives in Silver Spring, Md., with her mother, Loretta (who's separated from Don Dawes), sister Danielle and brother Don Jr., vows to keep training. One famous fan will be rooting all the way. Says Retton: "Dominique is amazing.

Karen Sillas
Before Sanding the role of detective Rose Phillips in CBS's Under Suspicion, Karen Silt as thought her career was suspect. "I was ready to give up acting," says Sillas, 30, who spent 10 years restoring houses to pay the rent, "When I'd walk into an audition, I felt like I was never right." But Suspicion creator Jacqueline Zambrano was impressed. "Karen," she says, "is not one of those actresses who has to emote." Nor, it turns out, one who has to look for a new line of work.

Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods, you're the youngest player ever to win the U.S. Amateur Golf Championship—now what are you going to do? I'm going to Stanford! His win in August landed Woods, 18, just a gimme putt away from a pro sports endorsement and prize-money bonanza, but he vows to get his business degree first. "I want to be able," he says, "to manage the people who manage me."

Heather Whitestone
She pirouetted her way into the hearts of pageant judges, becoming the first deaf woman to be crowned Miss America. Heather Whitestone, a college junior, aced the swim-suit and the talent competitions—dancing, she explains, to the "vibrations" of the music. Her aim is to inspire the young: "My crown," says Whitestone, 21, "should erase the word 'impossible from their vocabulary.

Marc Andreessen
The computer program that untangles the Internet has been snatched up by more than 2 million users since 1993, but Mosaic didn't make codesigner Marc Andreessen rich. He furnished it free to Internetters. But his fortunes may change with Netscape, a company he and computer graphics mogul Jim Clark have formed. This month they unveiled even more powerful Internet-friendly software that costs up to $5,000 (for businesses). "I've got stock up the wazoo," says Andreessen, 23. "If it's successful, I'll do well. If not, I'll be working at Safeway."

Rosie Daley
When she can't stand the heat, Rosie Daley gets back into Oprah Winfrey's kitchen. "Maybe I underestimated the power of Oprah," marvels Daley, 32, whose book, In the Kitchen with Rosie: Oprah's Favorite Recipes, became the fastest selling hardcover in publishing history (5.5 million copies in print since May). "I felt like I was a kite and someone cut the string." Once she came back down to earth, Daley banked her big bucks and churned out more recipes—including Oprah's current favorite, wild rice soup. Work is even better these days because of Oprah's new stainless steel and cherry wood kitchen. "It lends to a lot of creativity," says Daley. "It's a dream."

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