How Lena Dunham Went From Unknown Filmmaker To TV Star In Less Than A Year

Lena Dunham

Photo: Getty

2012 was a good year for Lena Dunham.The 26-year-old 2008 Oberlin-alum went from little known independent filmmaker to a famous name after creating, directing and starring in HBO’s hit show “Girls.”

Since premiering in April, “Girls,” which is executive produced by Judd Apatow, has won an Emmy and been nominated for two Golden Globes. The show premieres its second season January 13 and is already set for a third season after that.

Dunham, meanwhile, has signed a reported $3.5 million book deal tentatively titled “Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She’s Learned” in which she writes and illustrates essays about love, sex and life as a 20-something living in New York.

From preschool in Brooklyn to red carpets in Hollywood, here’s how Lena Dunham became the toast of 2012.

1986: Lena Dunham was born in New York City to parents Carroll Dunham, a painter, and Laurie Simmons, a successful photographer.

Dunham attended Saint Ann's School prestigious pre-K–12 day school in Brooklyn, New York, where she met friend and future co-star, Jemima Kirke.

2004-2008: Lena attends Oberlin College, where she studied creative writing. Dunham made three short films while in college.

May 2012: Lena attends the Met Gala on the arm of Vogue's European Editor at Large, Hamish Bowles.

August 2012: Lena co-stars with Jon Hamm in this quirky video promo for The New Yorker's new iPhone app.

December 2012: Lena's lawyer demands Gawker remove a 64-page proposal of her book posted on their website.

She has 136.5K Instagram followers.

And almost 500K followers on Twitter.

Lena Dunham is one of the Most Impressive People Of The Year. Now see who else made our list.

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