Actresses

The Best Living Actresses Over 80  

Buster McDermott
Originally by
57k votes 5.9k voters 258.8k views 53 items

List Rules Living actresses born in or before 1938

The best living actresses over 80 (or close to it) include the classic beauties who headlined films and television shows of yesterday and those older female actresses we love today. These women might not all be the fresh faces in Hollywood they once were but their legacy and contributions to the entertainment world are timeless.

For classic movie fans, these actresses born before 1935 include many familiar names from some of the best movies of all time. Who can forget Lauren Bacall starring alongside Humphrey Bogart in several movies in the 1940s or Maureen O'Hara appearing in westerns with the great John Wayne? What about the long and successful careers of Sophia Loren, Shirley MacLaine and Brigitte Bardot? They might not be the leading ladies of today but in their time, they were among the best in the business.

Despite their age, which all deal with gracefully, many of these best living actresses 80 or older are still active today. Betty White might be the best example of that as the Golden Girl continues to entertain audiences with her television shows and books.

Which actress over 80 is the absolute best when comparing them at the peak of their careers? That's your vote and you can exercise it below by voting, adding to or re-ranking this list of the best living actresses over 80! Want to rank the top older male actors next? Head over to add your selections to the best living actors in their 80s too!

list ordered by
1
Betty White is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 97
Betty Marion White Ludden (born January 17, 1922) is an American actress and comedian, with the longest television career of any entertainer, spanning 80 years. Regarded as a pioneer of ...more
2
Julie Andrews is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Tom Islava added age 83
Dame Julie Andrews, (born Julia Elizabeth Wells; 1 October 1935) is an English actress, singer and author. Andrews, a child actress and singer, appeared in the West End in 1948 and made her ...more
3
Maggie Smith is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
SampsaMurto added age 82
Dame Margaret Natalie Smith (born 28 December 1934) is an English actress. She has had an extensive, varied career on stage, film, and television, spanning over 67 years. Smith has appeared in ...more
4
Judi Dench is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Tom Islava added age 84
Dame Judith Olivia Dench (born 9 December 1934) is an English actress. Dench made her professional debut in 1957 with the Old Vic Company. Over the following few years, she performed in several ...more
5
Doris Day is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
voting closed at #9 Dec. at 97 (1922-2019)
Doris Day (born Doris Mary Kappelhoff; April 3, 1922 – May 13, 2019) was an American actress, singer, and animal welfare activist. She began her career as a big band singer in 1939, achieving ...more
6
Carol Burnett is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added age 85
1933 Carol Creighton Burnett (born April 26, 1933) is an American actress, comedian, singer and writer, whose career spans seven decades of television. She is best known for her groundbreaking comedy ...more
7
Angela Lansbury is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 93
Dame Angela Brigid Lansbury (born October 16, 1925) is a British-American-Irish actress who has appeared in theatre, television, and film. Her career has spanned eight decades, much of it in the ...more
8
Carol Channing is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 98
Carol Elaine Channing (January 31, 1921 – January 15, 2019) was an American actress, singer, dancer, and comedian, known for starring in Broadway and film musicals. Her characters usually ...more
9
Sophia Loren is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 84
Sofia Villani Scicolone (Italian: [soˈfiːa vilˈlaːni ʃʃikoˈloːne]; born 20 September 1934), known professionally as Sophia Loren (Italian: [ˈlɔːren], English: ), is an Italian film actress and ...more
10
Shirley MacLaine is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 84
Shirley MacLaine (born Shirley MacLean Beaty; April 24, 1934) is an American film, television, and theater actress, singer, dancer, activist, and author. An Academy Award winner, MacLaine ...more
11
Brigitte Bardot is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
FranciscodeSouza added age 84
Brigitte Anne-Marie Bardot (French: [bʁiʒit baʁdo]; born 28 September 1934), often referred to by the initials B.B., is a French former actress and singer, and animal rights activist. Famous for ...more
12
Ellen Burstyn is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 86
Ellen Burstyn (born Edna Rae Gillooly; December 7, 1932) is an American actress best known for her roles in films of the 1970s, such as The Last Picture Show, The Exorcist, and Alice Doesn't ...more
13
Cloris Leachman is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added age 92
1926 Cloris Leachman (born April 30, 1926) is an American actress and comedian. In a career spanning over seven decades she has won eight Primetime Emmy Awards, a Daytime Emmy Award, and an Academy ...more
14
Olivia de Havilland is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 102
Dame Olivia Mary de Havilland (; born July 1, 1916) is a British-American-French retired actress whose film career spanned from 1935 to 1988. She appeared in 49 feature films, was one of the ...more
15
Gena Rowlands is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 88
Virginia Cathryn "Gena" Rowlands (born June 19, 1930) is an American actress, whose career in film, stage, and television has spanned over six decades. A four-time Emmy and two-time ...more
16
Joanne Woodward is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 89
Joanne Gignilliat Trimmier Woodward (born February 27, 1930) is an American actress, producer, and philanthropist. She is best known for her performance in The Three Faces of Eve (1957), which ...more
17
Barbara Eden is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Walter Mccabe added age 87
Barbara Eden (born Barbara Jean Morehead, August 23, 1931) is an American film, stage, and television actress, and singer, best known for her starring role of "Jeannie" in the sitcom I ...more
18
Rita Moreno is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added age 84
1931 Rita Moreno (born December 11, 1931) is a Puerto Rican actress, dancer and singer. Her career has spanned over 70 years; among her notable acting work are supporting roles in the musical films ...more
19
Eva Marie Saint is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 94
Eva Marie Saint (born July 4, 1924) is an American actress. In a career spanning 70 years, she is known for starring in Elia Kazan's On the Waterfront (1954), for which she won an Academy Award ...more
20
Angie Dickinson is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Walter Mccabe added age 87
Angeline Dickinson (née Brown; born September 30, 1931) is an American actress. She began her career on television, appearing in many anthology series during the 1950s, before landing her ...more
21
Diahann Carroll is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
voting closed at #21 FranciscodeSouza added Dec. at 84 (1935-2019)
Diahann Carroll (; born Carol Diahann Johnson, July 17, 1935) is an American actress, singer and model. She rose to stardom in performances in some of the earliest major studio films to feature ...more
22
Joan Collins is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
age 85
Dame Joan Henrietta Collins, (born 23 May 1933) is an English actress, author, and columnist. She made her stage debut at the age of nine, trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in ...more
23
Charlotte Rae is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
voting closed at #37 JenniferHansen added age 92
Charlotte Rae Lubotsky (April 22, 1926 – August 5, 2018), known professionally as Charlotte Rae, was an American character actress, comedian, and singer whose career spanned six decades. Rae was ...more
24
Jane Powell is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added age 89
1929 Jane Powell (born Suzanne Lorraine Burce; April 1, 1929) is an American singer, dancer and actress who rose to fame in the mid-1940s with roles in various Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer musicals. Powell ...more
25
Cicely Tyson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
FranciscodeSouza added age 91
Cicely L. Tyson (born December 19, 1924) is an American actress and former fashion model. In a career spanning more than six decades, she became known for her portrayal of strong ...more