oscars The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress  

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Every year the Academy evaluates a year's worth of brilliant performances and picks what they believe to be the best of the best, nominating these for the most prestigious acting awards in cinema: the Oscars. This in itself is an honor - just to be nominated for an Academy Award. But only one person can win each year, and the women listed here have all taken home Oscar gold for Best Actress in a Leading Role - so which Best Actress Oscar winners are the best?

Of the leading women who have won Best Actress, who is the best Best Actress? Is it the most nominated women of all time Meryl Streep, with 15 nominations? Is it a classic actress like Katharine Hepburn (who has the most wins, with four)? What about Audrey Hepburn, or Grace Kelly? Maybe a more modern choice like Hilary Swank, Cate Blanchett, Jennifer Lawrence, or Julianne Moore?
 
With so many options choosing the best is hard, but that's where you come in. Vote up the very best actresses of all the Best Actress Academy Award winners below!
list ordered by

1
797 329
Katharine Hepburn is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Katharine Hepburn Died at 96 (1907-2003) - Morning Glory (1932), Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967), The Lion in Winter (1968), On Golden Pond (1984)

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2
984 523
Meryl Streep is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Meryl Streep age 68 - Sophie's Choice (1982), The Iron Lady (2011)

3
714 343
Joan Crawford is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Joan Crawford Died at 73 (1904-1977) - Mildred Pierce (1945)

4
667 355
Jodie Foster is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Jodie Foster age 55 - The Accused (1988), Silence of the Lambs (1991)

5
538 606
Audrey Hepburn is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Audrey Hepburn Died at 64 (1929-1993) - Roman Holiday (1953)

6
396 162
Anne Bancroft is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Anne Bancroft Died at 74 (1931-2005)

7
475 299
Sally Field is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Sally Field age 71 - Norma Rae (1979),  Places in the Heart (1984)

8
402 439
Vivien Leigh is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Vivien Leigh Died at 54 (1913-1967) - Gone with the Wind (1939), A Streetcar Named Desire  (1951)

9
510 506
Bette Davis is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Bette Davis Died at 81 (1908-1989) - Dangerous (1935), Jezebel (1938)

10
276 90
Susan Hayward is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Susan Hayward Died at 58 (1917-1975)

11
426 328
Helen Mirren is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Helen Mirren age 72 - The Queen (2006)

12
383 170
Jessica Lange is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Jessica Lange age 68

13
331 89
Mary Pickford is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Mary Pickford Died at 87 (1892-1979)

14
400 379
Kate Winslet is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Kate Winslet age 42 - The Reader (2008)

15
342 473
Ingrid Bergman is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Ingrid Bergman Died at 67 (1915-1982) - Gaslight (1944),  Anastasia (1956)

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16
223 118
Ginger Rogers is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Ginger Rogers Died at 84 (1911-1995)

17
363 367
Kathy Bates is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Kathy Bates age 69 - Misery (1990)

18
399 354
Julie Andrews is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Julie Andrews age 82 - Mary Poppins (1964)

19
453 488
Cate Blanchett is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Cate Blanchett age 48 - Blue Jasmine (2013)

20
353 232
Grace Kelly is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Grace Kelly Died at 53 (1929-1982) - The Country Girl (1954)

21
332 327
Julianne Moore is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Julianne Moore age 57 - Still Alice (2014)

22
313 296
Julia Roberts is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Julia Roberts age 50 - Erin Brockovich (2000)

23
202 90
Jessica Tandy is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Jessica Tandy Died at 85 (1909-1994)

24
178 195
Frances McDormand is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress

25
179 58
Helen Hayes is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
FranciscodeSouza added Helen Hayes Died at 93 (1900-1993)

26
281 272
Diane Keaton is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Diane Keaton age 71 - Annie Hall (1977)

27
186 80
Jane Wyman is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Jane Wyman Died at 90 (1917-2007)

28
220 118
Sissy Spacek is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Sissy Spacek age 68

29
354 287
Reese Witherspoon is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Reese Witherspoon age 41 - Walk the Line (2005)

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30
316 290
Emma Thompson is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Emma Thompson age 58 - Howard's End (1992)

31
348 351
Sandra Bullock is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Sandra Bullock age 53 - The Blind Side (2009)

32
189 92
Loretta Young is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Loretta Young Died at 87 (1913-2000)

33
168 153
Julie Christie is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress

34
222 190
Ellen Burstyn is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Ellen Burstyn age 85 - Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974)

35
220 233
Claudette Colbert is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Claudette Colbert Died at 93 (1903-1996) - It Happened One Night (1934)

36
311 291
Jane Fonda is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Jane Fonda age 80 - Klute (1971), Coming Home (1978)

37
143 81
Patricia Neal is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Patricia Neal Died at 84 (1926-2010)

38
271 211
Maggie Smith is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Maggie Smith age 83

39
235 162
Helen Hunt is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress

40
150 97
Joanne Woodward is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Joanne Woodward age 87

41
285 291
Halle Berry is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Halle Berry age 51 - Monster's Ball (2001)

42
208 230
Liza Minnelli is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Liza Minnelli age 71 - Cabaret (1972)

43
153 87
Holly Hunter is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Holly Hunter age 59

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44
322 330
Jennifer Lawrence is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Jennifer Lawrence age 27 - Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

45
130 102
Geraldine Page is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Geraldine Page Died at 63 (1924-1987)

46
283 583
Elizabeth Taylor is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Elizabeth Taylor Died at 79 (1932-2011) - Butterfield 8 (1960), Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1964)

47
230 348
Nicole Kidman is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Nicole Kidman age 50 - The Hours (2002)

48
122 101
Jennifer Jones is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Jennifer Jones Died at 90 (1919-2009)

49
227 321
Natalie Portman is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Natalie Portman age 36 - Black Swan (2010)

50
138 126
Joan Fontaine is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress
Matthew Baker added Joan Fontaine Died at 96 (1917-2013)