actresses The Best Living English Actresses  

Ranker Film
Originally by
27.4k votes 2.2k voters 40.4k views 187 items

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

Hailing from England, these women in film are acting circles around some of their male counterparts. These actresses from England included established, household names like Judi Dench and Helen Mirren, as well as younger English actresses like Emma Watson and Carey Mulligan. Who are the best living English actresses? They're all listed here, and your votes can help determine who is ranked as the best!

The top living actresses from England ranked on this list have decorated careers that have spanned decades and many are still working today. Their long lists of credits include movies and TV shows from all over the world, namely the United States and Great Britain. From Oscar winners to consistently great English actresses, these women are changing film and turning in amazing performances time and time again.

This list features the greatest English actresses alive today including Julie Andrews, Tilda Swinton, Vanessa Redgrave, Kate Winslet, Kate Beckinsale, Judi Dench, Keira Knightley, Helen Mirren, and Emily Blunt. Don't see your favorite living actress from England? Add her 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 actresses still alive today.
list ordered by

1
631 304
Kate Winslet is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Kate Winslet The Reader, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Titanic

2
501 242
Helen Mirren is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Helen Mirren The Queen, Gosford Park, The Long Good Friday

3
593 314
Rachel Weisz is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Rachel Weisz The Constant Gardener, Sunshine, About a Boy

4
487 225
Judi Dench is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Judi Dench Philomena, Shakespeare in Love, Skyfall

5
442 209
Emma Thompson is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Emma Thompson Sense and Sensibility, The Remains of the Day, Harry Potter series

6
494 215
Maggie Smith is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Maggie Smith A Room with a View, Gosford Park, Harry Potter series

7
547 214
Emily Blunt is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Emily Blunt Charlie Wilson's War, The Devil Wears Prada, Sunshine Cleaning

8
683 250
Emma Watson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Emma Watson Harry Potter series, Noah, The Perks of Being a Wallflower

9
454 253
Helena Bonham Carter is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Helena Bonham Carter Fight Club, The King's Speech, Howards End

10
577 242
Keira Knightley is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Keira Knightley The Imitation Game, Pride and Prejudice, Atonement

11
516 202
Kate Beckinsale is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Kate Beckinsale Brokedown Palace, The Aviator, Underworld series

12
320 183
Julie Andrews is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Julie Andrews Mary Poppins, Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Americanization of Emily

13
394 198
Emilia Clarke is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Emilia Clarke Game of Thrones, Terminator Genisys

14
306 165
Lena Headey is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Lena Headey Game of Thrones, 300, Aberdeen

The Most Beautiful British Women

15
301 166
Rosamund Pike is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Rosamund Pike Gone Girl, The World's End, Pride and Prejudice

16
210 218
Vanessa Redgrave is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Vanessa Redgrave Coriolanus, Howards End, Atonement

17
222 196
Tilda Swinton is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Tilda Swinton Michael Clayton, Snowpiercer, The Chronicles of Narnia

18
202 139
Felicity Jones is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Felicity Jones The Theory of Everything, Brideshead Revisited, Page Eight

19
261 146
Catherine Zeta-Jones is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
ColinBoddy added Catherine Zeta-Jones Chicago, Traffic, Ocean's Twelve

20
157 149
Julie Walters is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Julie Walters Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2

21
235 165
Gemma Arterton is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Gemma Arterton The Disappearance of Alice Creed, The Voices, Gemma Bovery

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22
203 148
Kristin Scott Thomas is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Kristin Scott Thomas The English Patient, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Gosford Park

23
130 173
Imelda Staunton is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
MatthewGill added Imelda Staunton Vera Drake, Sense and Sensibility, Harry Potter series

24
221 182
Sienna Miller is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Sienna Miller Foxcatcher, Factory Girl, Layer Cake

25
186 151
Thandie Newton is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Thandie Newton Crash, Beloved, Besieged

26
173 160
Carey Mulligan is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Carey Mulligan An Education, Drive, Shame

27
102 153
Charlotte Rampling is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Charlotte Rampling The Verdict, The Damned, Swimming Pool

28
130 108
Jane Seymour is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
ColinBoddy added Jane Seymour Wedding Crashers, Live and Let Die, Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger

The Best Living English Actors

29
118 77
Elizabeth Hurley is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
johnbamf added Elizabeth Hurley Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery, Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, Bedazzled

30
138 118
Hayley Atwell is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Hayley Atwell Captain America: The First Avenger, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Avengers: Age of Ultron

31
179 145
Alice Eve is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Alice Eve Star Trek Into Darkness, Men in Black 3, Sex and the City 2

32
150 155
Imogen Poots is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Imogen Poots Me and Orson Welles, Jane Eyre, Fright Night

33
78 50
Emily Watson is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Gerri Foudy added Emily Watson Corpse Bride, Red Dragon, Punch-Drunk Love

34
80 55
Lily Collins is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
OliverDavis added Lily Collins The Blind Side, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, Abduction

35
153 160
Minnie Driver is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Minnie Driver Good Will Hunting, Big Night, Circle of Friends

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36
96 123
Samantha Morton is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
looksharp added Samantha Morton In America, Minority Report, John Carter

37
75 35
Claire Foy is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Gerri Foudy added Claire Foy Season of the Witch, Vampire Academy: Blood Sisters, Vivaldi

38
101 86
Jenna Coleman is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
bigcraig added Jenna Coleman Captain America: The First Avenger, Room at the Top

39
106 113
Naomie Harris is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Naomie Harris Skyfall, 28 Days Later, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

40
65 42
Jacqueline Bisset is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Gerri Foudy added Jacqueline Bisset Bullitt, Murder on the Orient Express, Airport

41
70 86
Brenda Blethyn is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Kasir Radojica added Brenda Blethyn Pride & Prejudice, Atonement, A River Runs Through It

42
107 123
Diana Rigg is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
AaronYeaton added Diana Rigg On Her Majesty's Secret Service, The Great Muppet Caper, The Hospital

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43
57 41
Miranda Richardson is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Gerri Foudy added Miranda Richardson Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Sleepy Hollow, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part I

44
63 53
Emilia Fox is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
johnbamf added Emilia Fox The Pianist, Cashback, Dorian Gray

45
117 132
Olivia de Havilland is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Olivia de Havilland Gone with the Wind, Cinema Paradiso, The Adventures of Robin Hood

46
59 102
Jessica Tandy is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
ColinBoddy added Jessica Tandy The Birds, Driving Miss Daisy, Fried Green Tomatoes

47
154 168
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Mad Max: Fury Road

48
38 28
Angela Lansbury is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
SandyQ8 added Angela Lansbury Beauty and the Beast, The Manchurian Candidate, Bedknobs and Broomsticks

49
58 92
Joanna Lumley is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
ColinBoddy added Joanna Lumley The Wolf of Wall Street, Corpse Bride, James and the Giant Peach

50
55 59
Joely Richardson is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Living English Actresses
johnbamf added Joely Richardson The Patriot, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, 101 Dalmatians