My suggestion to you right now is to watch Eyes of a Stranger. This low-budget thriller by Ken Wiederhorn, whose Shock Waves is my stock answer for a movie I'd like to remake (see Fantasy projects), that was just recently released on DVD is solid, but that's not what you're watching for.
In this movie, an 18-year old Jennifer Jason Leigh makes her feature debut in a movie that's frankly better directed than it is written. But she absolutely brings it. It's a relatively small role, but as a blind and deaf person, it certainly has beats to play. It's the kind of performance that any casting director, producer or director that saw would likely not only take note of for themselves, but pass along to other casting directors, producers and directors.
And that's the reason she's made it and lasted.
Not necessarily that movie specifically, of course, but that attitude.