Fictional Characters The Best African-American Characters in Film  

Ranker Film
Originally by
11.9k votes 1.1k voters 90.6k views 122 items

List Rules Only film characters who are African American (so, Lando Calrissian doesn't count). Upvote the greatest characters in any movies.

A list of the all time greatest African American characters in film, ranked as the best in film history by movie lovers everywhere. This list has the best African American characters in film and includes photos and the film in which they appeared. Who are the all time best black characters in film?

From classic films like The Green Mile, Shaft, and The Help, the characters on this list are also some of the best characters in film history. Many of the actors who portrayed these classic African American male and female film characters received numerous awards for their notable performances.

Characters on this list include Alonzo Harris, Morpheus, Blade, Sherriff Bart, Jules Winnfield, John Shaft, and Captain Rhodes. Cast your votes for the African American characters listed here that you believe are the best of all time. If the African American characters you think are the greatest are missing from the list, add them below to complete the list.

list ordered by

1
278 90
Jules Winnfield is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Pulp Fiction

2
213 73
Alonzo is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Training Day

3
252 94
Ellis Boyd 'Red' Redding is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
The Shawshank Redemption

4
213 73
John Coffey is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
The Green Mile

5
119 21
Django is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Tom Islava added Django Unchained, Django, One Damned Day at Dawn… Django Meets Sartana!

6
197 70
Morpheus is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
The Matrix

7
56 4
Black Panther is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
KwameObiri-Addai added Black Panther

8
141 60
John Shaft is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Shaft

9
225 84
Malcolm X is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Malcolm X

10
114 55
Sergeant Emil Foley is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Dismalhead added Sergeant Emil Foley Louis Gosseti Jr. in An Officer and a Gentleman

11
144 67
Tina Turner is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
LanaYoshii added What's Love Got to Do with It

12
118 34
Ray Charles is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film

13
153 78
Axl Foley is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Axl Foley Beverly Hills Cop

14
171 77
Apollo Creed is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Rocky IV, Rocky, Rocky II

15
166 75
Benjamin Buford

16
160 72
Blade is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Blade: Trinity, Blade II, Blade

17
90 29
Mouse Alexander is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Devil in a Blue Dress

18
132 67
Roger Murtaugh is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Lethal Weapon

19
39 5
Uhura is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
FranciscodeSouza added Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

20
74 23
Ezekial
Devil in a Blue Dress

21
107 65
Mammy is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
LanaYoshii added Gone with the Wind

22
45 7
Jackie Brown is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
FranciscodeSouza added Jackie Brown

23
83 30
Chicken George is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Chicken George Roots

24
94 48
Celie is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
LanaYoshii added The Color Purple

25
112 61
Agent J is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Men in Black, Men in Black II

26
97 61
Kunta Kinte is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
LanaYoshii added Roots: The Gift

27
98 52
Principal Joe Clark is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
LanaYoshii added Lean on Me

28
128 50
Sheriff Bart is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Blazing Saddles

29
129 64
Sister Mary Clarence is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Sister Mary Clarence Sister Act

30
82 34
Coach Herman Boone is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Remember the Titans

31
70 27
John Quincy Archibald is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film

32
71 28
Tre Styles is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Boyz N the Hood

33
40 8
Sofia is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
FranciscodeSouza added Gimme the Loot, The Color Purple, The Lovers of the Arctic Circle

34
73 31
Doughboy is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Boyz N the Hood

35
93 35
Coffy is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Coffy

36
36 6
Deloris Van Cartier is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit, Sister Act

37
101 64
Minny Jackson is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
The Help

38
86 53
Aibileen Clark is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
The Help

39
128 60
John Hancock is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
John Hancock Hancock

40
87 45
Tiana is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
The Princess and the Frog

41
51 22
Carl Lee Hailey is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
A Time to Kill

42
79 55
Solomon Northup is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
LanaYoshii added 12 Years a Slave

43
50 23
Sam is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
RobLein added Sam Casablanca

44
48 21
Jackie Robinson is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
RobLein added Jackie Robinson 42

45
95 60
Lucius Fox is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
Owen_Paul_Sloane added Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises

46
92 69
Virgil Tibbs is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
In the Heat of the Night

47
66 45
Billie Holiday is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
LanaYoshii added Lady Sings the Blues

48
16 1
Erik Killmonger is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
KwameObiri-Addai added Erik Killmonger Black Panther

49
110 60
Storm is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
X-Men, X-Men: The Last Stand, X2

50
26 6
Mama Odie is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best African-American Characters in Film
FranciscodeSouza added The Princess and the Frog