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The Greatest Female Villains

Updated November 1, 2020 286.1k votes 26.7k voters 1.3m views262 items

List RulesVote up and add all of your favorite fictional, evil ladies.

The best female villains include women whose roles are truly iconic and evil. Some of the greatest movie and television villains ever made this list. Whether it's a mentally unstable character who stalks her unsuspecting victim or a conniving, totally immoral villain who frames innocent people, this list includes all the big female villain names. It is, however, not complete, so please, feel free to add your favorite female TV and movie villains as well. Vote for the characters you think are the worst villains ever to grace the big or small screen.

What makes a great villain? A character that is morally bankrupt, complex, and tortured - and, more often than not, extremely well dressed. The female villains listed here certainly fit the mold. Some are evil to their very core, allowing heroes to emerge and shine as they (hopefully) triumph against them. A villain is nefarious, vile and generally bad. Many are guilty of criminal behavior, to say the least. Some make us love to hate them (that's a sure sign of a fantastic female villain). We cheer if and when they meet their untimely ends, because they deserved it!

In film, some of the best movie villains of all time are females. Need proof? How about bunny-boiler Alex Forrest (Glenn Close) in 'Fatal Attraction' or mentally deranged "fan" Annie Wilkes (Kathy Bates) in 'Mysery'? Sharon Stone's portrayal of femme fatale Catherine Tramell in 'Basic Instinct' earns her a best female villain place on the list, as well as a top spot among the sexiest characters in thrillers.

Some actresses' best roles in movies or on TV shows came when they played villains. Rachel McAdams was unforgettably villainous as Regina George, aka Queen Bee, in 'Mean Girls.' Helena Bonham Carter's played some interesting roles over the years, but none more wicked that Bellatrix Lestrange in the 'Harry Potter' movies.

From the psycho exes to the stalkers and the femme fatales, enjoy this list of the best female villains in movies and television, and feel free to rerank it your way, too.

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  • 1
    Bellatrix Lestrange
    7,164
    3,673

    Powers & AbilitiesOcclumency

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  • 2
    Cersei Lannister
    6,007
    3,089

    Cersei Lannister

    Game of Thrones

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  • 3
    Dolores Umbridge
    4,771
    2,354

    Dolores Umbridge

    Harry Potter
  • 4
    Cruella de Vil
    3,942
    2,258

    Cruella de Vil

    101 Dalmatians
  • 5
    Queen
    2,063
    1,043

    Queen

    Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

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    #7 of 78 The Greatest Animated Disney Villains#6 of 42 The Greatest Fictional Queens

  • 6
    Poison Ivy
    2,717
    1,542

    Poison Ivy

    Batman & Robin

    Powers & AbilitiesPoison Emission, Chlorokinesis

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    #3156 of 3,509 The Best Movie Characters Of All Time#18 of 650 The Best Comic Book Villains

  • 7
    Hela
    843
    245

    Hela

    Requiem
  • 8
    Other Mother
    1,444
    619

    Other Mother

    Coraline

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  • 9
    Ursula
    3,079
    1,806

    Ursula

    The Little Mermaid

    Powers & AbilitiesShapeshifting

  • 10
    Regina George
    3,323
    1,932

    Regina George

    Mean Girls
  • 11
    Maleficent
    5,453
    3,297

    Maleficent

    Sleeping Beauty

    Powers & AbilitiesShapeshifting, Teleportation

  • 12
    Mother Gothel
    1,636
    917
  • 13
    Mystique
    3,623
    2,393

    Mystique

    Marvel Universe

    Powers & AbilitiesShapeshifting, Healing factor

  • 14
    Agatha Trunchbull
    1,094
    564

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  • 15
    Winifred Sanderson
    803
    333
  • 16
    Jadis the White Witch
    2,714
    1,808

    Jadis the White Witch

    The Chronicles of Narnia

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  • 17
    Queen Ravenna
    2,285
    1,587

    Queen Ravenna

    Snow White and the Huntsman
  • 18
    Catwoman
    3,032
    2,142

    Catwoman

    Maggie, Catwoman

    Powers & AbilitiesHand-to-hand combat, Empathy

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  • 19
    Alien Queen
    1,431
    950

    Alien Queen

    Aliens Universe
  • 20
    Samara Morgan
    1,219
    824

    Samara Morgan

    The Ring Franchise
  • 21
    Yzma
    1,883
    1,189

    Yzma

    Kronk's New Groove, The Emperor's New Groove
  • 22
    Azula
    1,737
    812

    Azula

    Avatar: The Last Airbender, Avatar: Legend of Korra

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    #78 of 291 The Best TV Villains Of All Time#117 of 254 The Best Female Anime Characters

  • 23
    O-Ren Ishii
    2,472
    1,721

    O-Ren Ishii

    Kill Bill Universe

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    #257 of 395 The Greatest Female Characters in Film History#12 of 29 The Most Lethal Female Assassins in Film & TV

  • 24
    Nancy Downs
    1,209
    776

    Nancy Downs

    The Craft

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  • 25
    Annie Wilkes
    3,513
    2,619