actors The Best Living English Actors  

Ranker Film
Originally by
20.1k votes 2.7k voters 17.4k views 55 items

List Rules Living male actors from England. Vote based on their entire body of work so far.

You'd listen to Michael Caine talk all day, right? And surely you'd watch Ian McKellan in just about any movie Hollywood decided he should be in. Why? Because they're two of the best living English actors, along with the other English men on this list. These greatest living actors from England aren't just handsome and don't just come with a great accent, they're truly talented actors who have all made film history.

Who are the top living English actors? These men (whether retired or still working) are still gracing the earth and many are turning out excellent performances in hit movies, like Christian Bale and Benedict Cumberbatch. The best at what they do, these English actors win awards left and right, from BAFTAs to Golden Globes, and are popular with film-going audiences the world over.

This list features the greatest living English actors including Christian Bale, Ewan McGregor, Michael Cane, Colin Firth, Anthony Hopkins, Ralph Fiennes, Sean Bean, John Cleese, Jude Law, Hugh Laurie, and Rupert Everett. Don't see your favorite living actor from England? Add him below so other film fans can vote. Then, be sure to vote and rerank the list according to who you think are the best English actors still alive today.

list ordered by

1
544 392
Gary Oldman is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Gary Oldman The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins

2
698 482
Christian Bale is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Christian Bale The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins

3
419 261
Ian McKellen is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Ian McKellen The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, X-Men

4
468 312
Benedict Cumberbatch is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Benedict Cumberbatch Star Trek Into Darkness, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, 12 Years a Slave

5
206 76
James McAvoy is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Julia Adamczyk added James McAvoy X-Men: First Class, X-Men: Days of Future Past, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion

6
365 240
Patrick Stewart is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Patrick Stewart X-Men, X-Men: The Last Stand, X-Men 2

7
348 219
Tom Hiddleston is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Tom Hiddleston The Avengers, Thor, Thor: The Dark World

8
285 223
Ben Kingsley is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Ben Kingsley Schindler's List, Iron Man 3, Shutter Island

9
390 343
Michael Caine is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Michael Caine The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins

10
377 323
Daniel Day-Lewis is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Daniel Day-Lewis Gangs of New York, The Last of the Mohicans, There Will Be Blood

11
391 346
Colin Firth is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Colin Firth The English Patient, The King's Speech, Shakespeare in Love

12
369 324
Ralph Fiennes is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Ralph Fiennes Schindler's List, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

13
274 197
Hugh Laurie is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Hugh Laurie 101 Dalmatians, Monsters vs. Aliens, Sense and Sensibility

14
373 198
Tom Hardy is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Tom Hardy The Dark Knight Rises, Inception, Black Hawk Down

Celebrities Who Were Rich Before They Were Famous

15
246 216
Jeremy Irons is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Jeremy Irons The Lion King, Die Hard with a Vengeance, The Time Machine

16
255 189
Martin Freeman is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Martin Freeman Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, Love Actually

17
224 170
Sean Bean is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Sean Bean The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers

18
258 132
Idris Elba is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Idris Elba Thor, Thor: The Dark World, Prometheus

19
233 165
Jude Law is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Jude Law Hugo, A.I. Artificial Intelligence, The Grand Budapest Hotel

20
232 195
Daniel Craig is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Daniel Craig Casino Royale, Skyfall, Road to Perdition

21
202 149
Rowan Atkinson is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Rowan Atkinson The Lion King, Love Actually, Rat Race

American Celebs Who Were in British Commercials

22
130 101
Daniel Radcliffe is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Living English Actors
black90txd added Daniel Radcliffe Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2

23
369 262
Hugh Dancy is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Living English Actors
RazzleDazzle(Crimsonny) added Hugh Dancy Black Hawk Down, Ella Enchanted, King Arthur

24
140 120
Simon Pegg is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Simon Pegg Star Trek, Shaun of the Dead, Star Trek Into Darkness

25
156 150
Clive Owen is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Clive Owen Sin City, The Bourne Identity, Children of Men

26
169 137
Bill Nighy is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Bill Nighy Shaun of the Dead, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Hot Fuzz

27
144 122
John Cleese is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Living English Actors
John Cleese Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

28
131 101
David Thewlis is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Living English Actors
MatthewGill added David Thewlis The Big Lebowski, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2

The Best Living English Actresses

29
95 124
Terence Stamp is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Terence Stamp Superman, Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, Superman II

30
98 131
Tom Wilkinson is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Tom Wilkinson Batman Begins, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Shakespeare in Love

31
82 99
Derek Jacobi is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Living English Actors
looksharp added Derek Jacobi Gladiator, The King's Speech, The Secret of NIMH

32
51 36
Stephen Fry is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Yuki Hikari added Stephen Fry Jeeves and Wooster

33
72 110
Rhys Ifans is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Rhys Ifans The Amazing Spider-Man, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part I, The Replacements

34
119 163
Hugh Grant is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Hugh Grant Love Actually, Notting Hill, Bridget Jones's Diary

35
104 113
Jim Broadbent is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Jim Broadbent Gangs of New York, Brazil, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

The Best Ubisoft Games List

36
99 110
Ian Holm is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Ian Holm Alien, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

37
41 48
Timothy Spall is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Ferry73 added Timothy Spall Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

38
100 103
Chiwetel Ejiofor is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Chiwetel Ejiofor Children of Men, Love Actually, American Gangster

39
48 50
Andrew Lincoln is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Lindsay Ní Mhurchú added Andrew Lincoln Love Actually, Gangster No. 1, Enduring Love

40
20 27
John Boyega is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Guest_8658ce6e-aba5-47fb-9a2e-95645b6a7e3e added John Boyega Attack the Block, Junkhearts, Half of a Yellow Sun

41
21 24
Damian Lewis is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Living English Actors
salesgal added Damian Lewis Your Highness, Dreamcatcher, The Escapist

42
71 98
Timothy Dalton is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Timothy Dalton Toy Story 3, Hot Fuzz, The Rocketeer

The Behind-The-Scenes Of 'West Side Story' Was Plagued With More Hatred Than The Movie Itself ...

43
16 26
Jamie Campbell Bower is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Living English Actors
AnnijaBule added Jamie Campbell Bower Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part I, The Twilight Saga: New Moon

44
59 132
Rupert Everett is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Rupert Everett Shrek 2, Shakespeare in Love, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion

45
39 68
Matthew Macfadyen is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Living English Actors
Cindy Harriel added Matthew Macfadyen Pride & Prejudice, Frost/Nixon, Grindhouse

46
33 62
Chris O'Dowd is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Living English Actors
includinguandme added Chris O'Dowd Thor: The Dark World, Bridesmaids, The Boat That Rocked

47
16 42
Sam Riley is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Living English Actors
1491971760840 added Sam Riley Maleficent, 24 Hour Party People, Control

48
15 11
Tom Holland is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Living English Actors
FILIMIX added Tom Holland The Impossible, Locke, How I Live Now

49
9 29
David Oyelowo is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Living English Actors
salesgal added David Oyelowo Lincoln, Interstellar, The Help

50
19 60
Nathaniel Parker is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Living English Actors
D. emmelinegrace added Nathaniel Parker Stardust, Hamlet, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader