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The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History 

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
Updated April 3, 2020 1.8M votes 87.7k voters 1.2M views 1,999 items

List Rules Vote up and add all of the actors and actresses who you think are the very best.

The best actors and actresses of all time, male and female, ranked by film fans worldwide. This list of greatest actors and actresses attempts to answer the question "Who are the best actors of all time?" by incorporating the views and opinions of all members of the Ranker Community. Keep in mind, as you vote or add a top actor or actress you see missing, that we are rating these actors on their body of work, not just what they have done recently! Some of the greatest actors of all time have not necessarily acted in a project in the past 5 years, but they still deserve to be on this greatest actresses and actors of all time list.

Top actors and actresses in films are judged by their acting ability and their mastery of roles that they have played over the years. Many of these great actors have videos of their best roles for you to view so you can refresh yourself on the best works of your favorite actors as you consider your votes for top thespians of all time. Nominate your picks for the top actors & actresses by making a list of your own. Then come back to the Master List and vote up your favorites!

For lists separated by gender, check out our lists of the best actors of all time and the best actresses in film history.
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list ordered by
1
Tom Hanks is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Forrest Gump, Saving Private Ryan, Toy Story
2
Robert Duvall is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, Apocalypse Now
3
Gene Hackman is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Superman, The French Connection, Young Frankenstein
4
Anthony Hopkins is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
The Silence of the Lambs, Thor, Thor: The Dark World
5
Paul Newman is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
The Sting, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Cars
6
Michael Caine is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins
7
Henry Fonda is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Once Upon a Time in the West, 12 Angry Men, The Grapes of Wrath
8
Morgan Freeman is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins
9
Helen Mirren is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Monsters University, The Prince of Egypt, Excalibur
10
Tommy Lee Jones is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
No Country for Old Men, Men in Black, Captain America: The First Avenger
11
Jodie Foster is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
The Silence of the Lambs, Taxi Driver, Contact
12
Clint Eastwood is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Good, Unforgiven, Dirty Harry
13
Judi Dench is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Casino Royale, Skyfall, Shakespeare in Love
14
Ingrid Bergman is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Casablanca, Notorious, Cinema Paradiso
15
Meryl Streep is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
NickPeek added The Deer Hunter, Out of Africa, Kramer vs. Kramer
16
Jack Lemmon is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
JFK, Some Like It Hot, The Apartment
17
Sean Connery is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Goldfinger, The Untouchables, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
18
Christopher Walken is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Pulp Fiction, Annie Hall, Batman Returns
19
Dustin Hoffman is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
The Graduate, Being John Malkovich, Rain Man
20
Cary Grant is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
North by Northwest, Bringing Up Baby, His Girl Friday
21
Alan Rickman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Die Hard, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
22
Gregory Peck is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
To Kill a Mockingbird, Cape Fear, The Omen
23
Kate Winslet is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Titanic, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Finding Neverland
24
Hugh Jackman is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
X-Men, X-Men: First Class, X-Men: The Last Stand
25
Clark Gable is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History
Gone with the Wind, It Happened One Night, Mutiny on the Bounty