The Best Actresses in Film History People In Film
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46  reranks 54,264 votes 2,797 voters 94,384 views more info

The Best Actresses in Film History

List Criteria: Female film actresses only!

The best actresses ever are ranked here in this list of the best actresses in film history. These are the greatest actresses ever to appear on the silver screen - female only (to vote on both genders, check out this list of the greatest film actors and actresses). These women were part of some of the greatest movies of all time (or were perhaps the reason they were the best movies ever), with countless Academy Awards between them.

What are the qualities of the best actresses of all time? Is it the raw emotion they show, the parts they choose, their acting methods, or simply their effortless charm and charisma? There's no denying some of these amazing actresses belong on the list of the hottest celebrities of all time, but behind the 1000 watt smiles lies the talent that defines generations of actresses.

Who is the best actor of all time? Is it a classic actor like Katharine Hepburn, a comedic genius like Tina Fey, a stunner like Catherine Zeta-Jones, or a method actor like Meryl Streep? There are so many choices for the greatest movie actress ever that you may have a hard time choosing just one (although you can vote for as many of the actresses on this list of the greatest actresses ever as you want). If your favorite leading lady isn't on the list, make sure to add her so others can vote for her to receive the title of best actress in film history.
List is ranked by a combination of each item's votes & positioning in reranks
  • 46 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
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Score
  1. 1
    Up 915
    Down 396

    the people's #1 &most listed
    Meryl Streep

    1949 More
    100
  2. 2
    Up 819
    Down 302
    1907 More
    100
  3. 3
    Up 635
    Down 274
    1915 More
    95
  4. 4
    Up 706
    Down 256
    1929 More
    93
  5. 5
    Up 573
    Down 326

    often listed
    Elizabeth Taylor

    1932 More
    88
  6. 6
    Up 627
    Down 218
    1908 More
    86
  7. 7
    Up 519
    Down 403

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Jodie Foster

    1962 More
    84
  8. 8
    Up 470
    Down 161
    1934 More
    84
  9. 9
    Up 485
    Down 195
    1945 More
    83
  10. 10
    Up 501
    Down 220
    1913 More
    83
  11. 11
    Up 507
    Down 172
    1934 More
    83
  12. 12
    Up 422
    Down 196
    1959 More
    83
  13. 13
    Up 389
    Down 239
    1924 More
    79
  14. 14
    Up 471
    Down 309
    1975 More
    79
  15. 15
    Up 415
    Down 242
    1947 More
    78
  16. 16
    Up 489
    Down 249
    1969 More
    78
  17. 17
    Up 347
    Down 245

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Rita Hayworth

    1918 More
    78
  18. 18
    Up 489
    Down 206
    1935 More
    76
  19. 19
    Up 424
    Down 218
    1929 More
    76
  20. 20
    Up 408
    Down 171
    1948 More
    74
  21. 21
    Up 244
    Down 157
    1937 More
    73
  22. 22
    Up 336
    Down 224
    1946 More
    73
  23. 23
    Up 272
    Down 179
    1922 More
    72
  24. 24
    Up 319
    Down 182
    1938 More
    72
  25. 25
    Up 327
    Down 160
    1931 More
    71
  26. 26
    Up 358
    Down 181
    1922 More
    71
  27. 27
    Up 285
    Down 203

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Helena Bonham Carter

    1966 More
    71
  28. 28
    Up 395
    Down 203
    1907 More
    71
  29. 29
    Up 298
    Down 193
    1949 More
    71
  30. 30
    Up 333
    Down 141

    ranked low on reranks
    Olivia de Havilland

    1916 More
    70
  31. 31
    Up 323
    Down 309

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Julia Roberts

    1967 More
    70
  32. 32
    Up 291
    Down 172
    1921 More
    70
  33. 33
    Up 293
    Down 193
    1958 More
    69
  34. 34
    Up 270
    Down 151
    1949 More
    69
  35. 35
    Up 340
    Down 179
    1934 More
    68
  36. 36
    Up 295
    Down 202
    1904 More
    68
  37. 37
    Up 358
    Down 131

    ranked low on reranks
    Sally Field

    1946 More
    67
  38. 38
    Up 373
    Down 244
    1975 More
    67
  39. 39
    Up 326
    Down 243
    1960 More
    67
  40. 40
    Up 275
    Down 179
    1905 More
    67
  41. 41
    Up 398
    Down 238
    1964 More
    67
  42. 42
    Up 222
    Down 116
    1932 More
    66
  43. 43
    Up 326
    Down 300
    1981 More
    66
  44. 44
    Up 277
    Down 165
    1903 More
    65
  45. 45
    Up 191
    Down 127
    1941 More
    65
  46. 46
    Up 317
    Down 259
    1926 More
    64
  47. 47
    Up 222
    Down 169
    1901 More
    64
  48. 48
    Up 157
    Down 142
    1970 More
    64
  49. 49
    Up 118
    Down 61
    1965 More
    63
  50. 50
    Up 241
    Down 92

    ranked low on reranks
    Sissy Spacek

    1949 More
    62
  51. 239 +

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