American People The Best Living American Actresses  

Ranker Film
Originally by
157.3k votes 7.3k voters 741.3k views 230 items

List Rules Vote up and add all of your favorite living AMERICAN actresses based on their all-time body of work.

It takes a lot to make a movie great. There has to be excellent writing, production, direction, editing, and of course, acting. While the crew draws out the parameters for a movie, the actors are who color in the film to bring it to life, and without great acting, a great film can crumble. 

These actresses are the ones who deliver time and again, regardless of how good the script or the production of the film is. These are the greatest American actors who are alive today. Who are the best actresses? That's up to you to decide. This list is votable and rerankable, and if you don't see someone on here that deserves a spot, feel free to add them, but make sure they're still alive... the top American actresses at any given time may not be the ones who are alive.
list ordered by
1
2,609 1,011
Meryl Streep is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
The Iron Lady, Kramer vs. Kramer, The Devil Wears Prada
2
1,749 952
Jodie Foster is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
The Silence of the Lambs, Taxi Driver, The Accused
3
1,401 840
Glenn Close is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Albert Nobbs, Dangerous Liaisons, The Big Chill
4
1,717 855
Kathy Bates is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Fried Green Tomatoes, Titanic, Misery
5
1,510 803
Sally Field is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Lincoln, Mrs. Doubtfire, Forrest Gump
6
1,322 766
Sigourney Weaver is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Alien, Avatar, Ghostbusters
7
502 322
Susan Sarandon is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
looksharp added The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Thelma & Louise, Bull Durham
8
1,050 752
Diane Lane is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
AndrewPhillips added Man of Steel, The Outsiders, The Perfect Storm
9
853 771
Frances McDormand is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Fargo, Burn After Reading, Almost Famous
10
2,241 968
Sandra Bullock is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Miss Congeniality, Gravity, The Blind Side
11
1,435 737
Amy Adams is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Her, American Hustle, Enchanted
12
1,139 727
Jessica Lange is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
King Kong, Tootsie, The Vow
13
1,071 743
Helen Hunt is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
As Good As It Gets, What Women Want, Pay it Forward
14
1,269 779
Diane Keaton is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Annie Hall, Something's Gotta Give, The Godfather
15
1,321 687
Julianne Moore is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
The Kids Are All Right, Non-Stop, Carrie
16
1,700 1,098
Jennifer Lawrence is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
The Hunger Games, Silver Linings Playbook, American Hustle
17
708 644
Holly Hunter is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
The Piano, Raising Arizona, O Brother Where Art Thou?
18
771 705
Annette Bening is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
The Kids Are All Right, American Beauty, The American President
19
1,950 922
Julia Roberts is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Pretty Woman, Erin Brockovich, Steel Magnolias
20
1,050 691
Hilary Swank is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Boys Don't Cry, Million Dollar Baby, Freedom Writers
21
916 739
Jennifer Connelly is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Noah, Requiem for a Dream, A Beautiful Mind
22
1,185 669
Jamie Lee Curtis is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
Halloween, True Lies, Freaky Friday
23
1,264 644
Michelle Pfeiffer is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
MeghanaJoshi added Scarface, Batman Returns, The Prince of Egypt
24
314 240
Shirley MacLaine is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
looksharp added The Apartment, Steel Magnolias, Terms of Endearment
25
853 624
Sissy Spacek is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Living American Actresses
laughingcactus added Carrie, JFK, The Help