Actresses The Greatest Non-White Actresses  

Ranker Film
4.3k votes 426 voters 11.7k views 58 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
109 39
Salma Hayek is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 51

2
105 37
Zoe Saldana is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 39

3
134 55
Priyanka Chopra is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

4
130 54
Lupita Nyong'o is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

5
99 42
Halle Berry is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 51

6
102 44
Viola Davis is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 52

7
85 35
Zendaya is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
lolavastel added age 21

8
87 37
Rosario Dawson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

9
81 34
Penélope Cruz is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

10
88 39
Octavia Spencer is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

11
98 46
Taraji P. Henson is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

12
75 32
Lucy Liu is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 49

13
76 33
Angela Bassett is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

14
72 32
Kerry Washington is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

15
53 27
Eva Mendes is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 44

16
53 28
Gina Rodriguez is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

17
63 38
Jennifer Lopez is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

18
56 33
Jessica Alba is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 36

19
53 32
Michelle Rodriguez is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

20
53 34
Queen Latifah is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 48

21
52 34
Thandie Newton is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

22
48 31
Beyoncé Knowles is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
1510765623048 added age 36 - She is the best

23
44 28
Nia Long is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 47

24
42 28
Whoopi Goldberg is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

25
38 28
Quvenzhané Wallis is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

26
40 30
Eva Longoria is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 43

27
28 19
Lisa Bonet is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 50

28
29 20
Rita Moreno is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 86

29
34 25
Jennifer Hudson is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

30
37 28
Pam Grier is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 68

31
37 29
Tracee Ellis Ross is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

32
38 30
Alfre Woodard is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 65

33
38 30
Regina King is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 44

34
37 30
Oprah Winfrey is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 64

35
32 25
Lena Horne is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Died at 93 (1917-2010)

36
31 26
America Ferrera is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

37
30 25
Constance Wu is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 30

38
30 25
Zhang Ziyi is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 39

39
31 27
Cicely Tyson is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 84

40
15 12
Hannah Simone is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Liz_NPP added age 37

41
23 21
Dorothy Dandridge is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Died at 43 (1922-1965)

42
30 29
Vanessa Hudgens is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

43
23 22
Ruby Dee is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Died at 92 (1922-2014)

44
26 26
Diahann Carroll is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

45
23 23
Gabourey Sidibe is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

46
21 21
Vivica A. Fox is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
age 53

47
12 12
Andrea Navedo is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Liz_NPP added

48
18 19
Kelly Marie Tran is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Liz_NPP added Kelly Marie Tran

49
21 23
Sophie Okonedo is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses

50
18 24
Hattie McDaniel is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Non-White Actresses
Died at 57 (1895-1952)