Actresses

The Greatest Non-White Actresses 

Ranker Film
Updated September 19, 2019 9.5k votes 1k voters 27.9k views 60 items

List Rules Vote up any great actress who is a person of color.

In 1939, Hattie McDaniel became the first African-American to win an Academy Award. She was recognized for her work in Gone With the Wind, a role that remained her most famous credit throughout her career. Hattie McDaniel helped blaze a trail for many non-white actresses that followed. Some of the best non-white actresses thrive in dramas, while other great actresses specialize in comedies. Many of the greatest non-white actresses, like McDaniel, have received Academy Award nominations for their performances.

Who will you find on this list of the best non-white actresses? Halle Berry made history in 2002 when she became the first African-American woman to win the Best Actress Academy Award. Viola Davis is also one of the most talented non-white actresses to ever grace the silver screen. Lucy Liu is a favorite in action films and beyond with memorable roles in films like Kill Bill and Charlie's Angels. Other great actresses who are featured on this list include Salma Hayek, Kerry Washington, and Michelle Rodriguez.

Which performances will stand the test of time? Keep reading and decide which star deserves the top spot on this list. Vote your favorite performers up to number one and add any notable people who are missing.
list ordered by
1
Lupita Nyong'o is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 35
2
Zendaya is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
lolavastel added Age: 19
3
Priyanka Chopra is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 33
4
Zoe Saldana is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 37
5
Salma Hayek is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 52
6
Viola Davis is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 50
7
Angela Bassett is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 57
8
Halle Berry is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 49
9
Lucy Liu is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 50
10
Jennifer Lopez is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 49
11
Octavia Spencer is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 45
12
Constance Wu is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Constance Wu Age: 27
13
Taraji P. Henson is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
14
Kerry Washington is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
15
Penélope Cruz is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 41
16
Rosario Dawson is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 39
17
Jessica Alba is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 34
18
Michelle Rodriguez is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
19
Eva Mendes is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 44
20
Gina Rodriguez is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 30
21
Thandie Newton is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 43
22
Queen Latifah is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 48
23
Vanessa Hudgens is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 27
24
Whoopi Goldberg is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 63
25
Nia Long is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Age: 45