Martial Arts The All-Time Greatest Action Stars  

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Originally by Ranker Community
209.4k votes 16.4k voters 262.7k views 161 items

List Rules Must be actors known for their work in action films.

Who are the all-time greatest action stars? This list includes some of the biggest names in movie history, and each actor or actress listed here is fully capable of kicking butt and taking names in any movie they're in. Action stars are a special breed. They combine great acting ability with physicality that brings an action film to life. Be sure to vote for your favorite action stars and vote down any you don't like. Also, feel free to add any great action movie stars who are missing from the list.

What makes an action star the best? It's someone who commands the screen with feats of strength and prowess, adding to the already amped-up feeling of an action film. Many people listed here are top action movie stars who starred in some of the greatest action movies of all time. Some are newcomers, having landed major roles in recent films, including the best action movies of 2012, for example.

Not all of the all-time greatest action stars are men, no no. Some of the sexiest women in action movies are included here. Among them: Sigourney Weaver, aka Ripley in Alien. She definitely qualifies. Angelina Jolie and Milla Jovovich are other good examples.

Enjoy voting for the best action stars, and remember: You can, and should, add any famous Hollywood action actors who deserve a spot but aren't already listed here!
list ordered by

1
5,008 2,077
Arnold Schwarzenegger is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Terminator, Predator, Total Recall

2
4,383 2,003
Sylvester Stallone is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Rocky, The Expendables, Rambo

3
3,502 1,600
Bruce Willis is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Sixth Sense, Die Hard, The Fifth Element

4
3,372 1,663
Clint Eastwood is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Million Dollar Baby, Gran Torino, Unforgiven

5
3,824 1,375
Bruce Lee is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Big Boss, The Way of the Dragon, The Chinese Connection

6
3,484 1,358
Jason Statham is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch

7
3,668 1,156
Jackie Chan is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Jackie Chan Adventures, Rush Hour, Rush Hour 2

8
2,841 1,429
Chuck Norris is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Way of the Dragon, Missing in Action, The Delta Force

9
2,767 1,229
Harrison Ford is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back

10
2,294 1,491
Mel Gibson is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Braveheart, Signs, Lethal Weapon

11
2,019 1,083
Sean Connery is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Dr. No, The Hunt for Red October, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

12
2,356 1,236
Jean-Claude Van Damme is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Double Impact, Universal Soldier, Kickboxer

13
2,218 1,118
Liam Neeson is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Schindler's List, Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace, Batman Begins

14
2,144 930
Hugh Jackman is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Prestige, X-Men: Days of Future Past, X-Men

15
2,332 875
Jet Li is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Hero, Unleashed, The Expendables

16
2,785 1,592
Dwayne Johnson is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
San Andreas, Fast & Furious 6, G.I. Joe: Retaliation

17
1,630 866
Kurt Russell is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Thing, Stargate, Death Proof

18
1,272 948
Sigourney Weaver is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Alien, Aliens, Alien³

19
1,377 924
Charles Bronson is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Once Upon a Time in the West, The Great Escape, The Dirty Dozen

20
1,650 1,396
John Wayne is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Searchers, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Rio Bravo

21
1,918 1,766
Tom Cruise is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Top Gun, Mission: Impossible, Jerry Maguire

22
1,191 943
Steve McQueen is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Great Escape, Wanted: Dead or Alive, Papillon

23
1,417 1,019
Wesley Snipes is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Blade, Blade II, Blade: Trinity

24
1,042 890
Linda Hamilton is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Logan2011 added Terminator 2: Judgment Day, The Terminator, Dante's Peak

25
1,950 986
Keanu Reeves is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Matrix, Speed, John Wick

26
1,583 1,144
Denzel Washington is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Training Day, American Gangster American Gangster, Man on Fire

27
1,401 1,040
Daniel Craig is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Skyfall, Casino Royale, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

28
1,509 1,066
Matt Damon is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Bourne Identity, Saving Private Ryan, Good Will Hunting

29
1,214 959
Dolph Lundgren is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Expendables, The Expendables 2, Universal Soldier

30
1,158 893
Jean Reno is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Léon: The Professional, The Da Vinci Code, Godzilla

31
1,793 1,394
Vin Diesel is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Furious 7, Fast & Furious 6, Fast Five

32
1,264 721
Robert Downey Jr. is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
ryanjjjj8 added The Avengers, Iron Man, Iron Man 3

33
1,200 930
Randy Savage is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Al Stamira added Spider-Man, Bolt, WrestleMania IV

34
871 515
Tommy Lee Jones is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
No Country for Old Men, Men in Black, Men in Black II

35
1,141 945
Nicolas Cage is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Leaving Las Vegas, National Treasure, Moonstruck

36
1,306 987
Christian Bale is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Dark Knight, The Prestige, American Psycho

37
1,074 775
Al Pacino is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Godfather, Scarface, Heat

38
973 821
Carl Weathers is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Predator, Rocky I, II & IV

39
745 751
Roger Moore is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Spy Who Loved Me, Live and Let Die, For Your Eyes Only

40
1,349 1,122
Mark Wahlberg is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Boogie Nights, The Fighter, Lone Survivor

41
1,223 711
Milla Jovovich is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
The Fifth Element, Resident Evil: Apocalypse, Resident Evil: Extinction

42
860 791
Patrick Swayze is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Ghost, Dirty Dancing, Donnie Darko

43
1,195 1,285
Steven Seagal is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Under Siege, Above the Law, Under Siege 2: Dark Territory

44
1,246 1,024
Samuel L. Jackson is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Pulp Fiction, Django Unchained, Captain America: The Winter Soldier

45
1,188 1,191
Will Smith is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Men in Black, I Am Legend, I

46
429 244
Robert De Niro is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Janka Garais added Goodfellas, The Godfather: Part II, Casino

47
969 982
Russell Crowe is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Gladiator, A Beautiful Mind, L.A. Confidential

48
862 889
Pierce Brosnan is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
GoldenEye, Tomorrow Never Dies, Die Another Day

49
1,014 929
Gerard Butler is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
300, How to Train Your Dragon, Olympus Has Fallen

50
949 935
Brad Pitt is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The All-Time Greatest Action Stars
Inglourious Basterds, Fight Club, World War Z