Actresses

The Best Living Actresses Over 80 

Buster McDermott
Originally by
Updated October 4, 2019 58.3k votes 6.1k voters 273.6k 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
Julie Andrews is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Tom Islava added Age: 83

Birthplace: Walton-on-Thames, United Kingdom

Dame Julie Andrews, (born 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 Broadway debut in The Boy ...more

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2
Betty White is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 97

Birthplace: Oak Park, Illinois, United States of America

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

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3
Maggie Smith is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
SampsaMurto added Age: age 82

Birthplace: Ilford, London, United Kingdom

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

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#29 of 274 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the World #7 of 327 The Best Actresses Working Today #42 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

4
Carol Burnett is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added Age: 85

Birthplace: San Antonio, Texas, United States of America

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

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5
Angela Lansbury is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 93

Birthplace: Poplar, London, United Kingdom

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

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#159 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History #49 of 940 The Best Actresses in Film History #137 of 469 The Greatest Entertainers of All Time

6
Judi Dench is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Tom Islava added Age: 84

Birthplace: Heworth, United Kingdom

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

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The Best Judi Dench Movies #12 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History #6 of 940 The Best Actresses in Film History

7
Doris Day is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
voting closed at #9 Dec. at 97 (1922-2019)

Birthplace: Cincinnati, Ohio, United States of America

Doris Day (born 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 commercial success in ...more

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The Best Doris Day Movies #467 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time #47 of 935 The Best Female Vocalists Ever

8
Sophia Loren is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 84

Birthplace: Rome, Italy

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

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9
Shirley MacLaine is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 84

Birthplace: USA, Virginia, Richmond

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

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The Best Shirley MacLaine Movies #140 of 378 The Best American Actresses Working Today #116 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

10
Brigitte Bardot is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
FranciscodeSouza added Age: 84

Birthplace: Paris, France

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

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#287 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History #170 of 940 The Best Actresses in Film History #147 of 469 The Greatest Entertainers of All Time

11
Carol Channing is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 98

Birthplace: Seattle, Washington, United States of America

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

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12
Barbara Eden is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Walter Mccabe added Age: 87

Birthplace: Tucson, Arizona, United States of America

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

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13
Olivia de Havilland is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 102

Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

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

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#153 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History #27 of 940 The Best Actresses in Film History #64 of 76 The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress

14
Ellen Burstyn is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 86

Birthplace: Michigan, USA, Detroit

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

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#191 of 327 The Best Actresses Working Today #75 of 378 The Best American Actresses Working Today #184 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

15
Cloris Leachman is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added Age: 92

Birthplace: Des Moines, Iowa, USA

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

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16
Gena Rowlands is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 88

Birthplace: Madison, Wisconsin, United States of America

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
17
Angie Dickinson is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Walter Mccabe added Age: 87

Birthplace: USA, Kulm, North Dakota

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

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18
Rita Moreno is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added Age: 87

Birthplace: Humacao, United States, with Territories

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

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19
Joanne Woodward is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 89

Birthplace: Thomasville, Georgia, United States of America

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

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20
Eva Marie Saint is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 94

Birthplace: Newark, New Jersey, United States of America

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

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#605 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History #122 of 940 The Best Actresses in Film History #8 of 21 Old Celebrities You Didn't Realize Are Still Alive

21
Shirley Jones is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Walter Mccabe added Age: 84

Birthplace: USA, Charleroi, Pennsylvania

Shirley Mae Jones (born March 31, 1934) is an American singer and actress. In her six decades in show business, she has starred as wholesome characters in a number of well-known musical films, ...more

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#470 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History #38 of 122 The Worst Oscar-Winning Actors Ever #246 of 940 The Best Actresses in Film History

22
Joan Collins is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
Age: 85

Birthplace: Paddington, London, United Kingdom

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

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#286 of 327 The Best Actresses Working Today #340 of 940 The Best Actresses in Film History #117 of 185 The Best Living English Actresses

23
Diahann Carroll is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
voting closed at #21 FranciscodeSouza added Dec. at 84 (1935-2019)

Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of America

Diahann Carroll (born 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 black casts, including ...more

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#28 of 229 The Greatest Black Actresses of All Time #1,238 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History #62 of 85 The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century

24
Cicely Tyson is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
FranciscodeSouza added Age: age 91

Birthplace: Harlem, New York City, New York, United States of America

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

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#231 of 378 The Best American Actresses Working Today #6 of 229 The Greatest Black Actresses of All Time #743 of 2,004 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

25
Jane Powell is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Living Actresses Over 80
robwargo added Age: 89

Birthplace: Portland, Oregon, United States of America

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