455 voters

The Best Forest Whitaker Movies

Updated July 9, 2020 3.3k votes 455 voters 78.8k views78 items

List RulesVote for your favorite movies, regardless of critic reviews or how big the role was.

List of the best Forest Whitaker movies, ranked best to worst with movie trailers when available. Over the years, Forest Whitaker has worked with many of the best directors in American cinema including Oliver Stone, Martin Scorsese and Clint Eastwood. Forest Whitaker's highest grossing movies have received a lot of accolades over the years, earning millions upon millions around the world. The order of these top Forest Whitaker movies is decided by how many votes they receive, so only highly rated Forest Whitaker movies will be at the top of the list. Forest Whitaker has been in a lot of films, so people often debate each other over what the greatest Forest Whitaker movie of all time is. If you and a friend are arguing about this then use this list of the most entertaining Forest Whitaker films to end the squabble once and for all.

If you think the best Forest Whitaker role isn't at the top, then upvote it so it has the chance to become number one. The greatest Forest Whitaker performances didn't necessarily come from the best movies, but in most cases they go hand in hand.

List contains films like The Last King of Scotland and Platoon.

"This list answers the questions, "What are the best Forest Whitaker movies?" and "What are the greatest Forest Whitaker roles of all time?" If you are a fan of Whtaker's award-winning performances, you might also enjoy our list of best Oprah Winfrey movies and best Cuba Gooding, Jr. movies.


  • 1

    Phone Booth

    Katie Holmes, Colin Farrell


    Directed byJoel Schumacher

    Phone Booth is a 2002 American psychological thriller film about a man who is held hostage in a telephone booth by a sniper. It stars Colin Farrell, Forest Whitaker, Katie Holmes, Radha Mitchell and...  more

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  • 2

    Repo Men

    Jude Law, Liev Schreiber


    Directed byMiguel Sapochnik

    Repo Men is a 2010 American-Canadian science fiction action-thriller film directed by Miguel Sapochnik, and starring Jude Law and Forest Whitaker. It is based on the novel The Repossession Mambo by...  more
  • 3


    John Travolta, Robert Duvall


    Directed byJon Turteltaub

    Phenomenon is a 1996 American romantic fantasy drama film directed by Jon Turteltaub, written by Gerald Di Pego, and starring John Travolta, Kyra Sedgwick, Forest Whitaker, Robert Duvall, and Jeffrey...  more

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  • 4

    Fast Times at Ridgemont High

    Nicolas Cage, Sean Penn


    Directed byAmy Heckerling

    Fast Times at Ridgemont High is a 1982 American coming-of-age teen comedy film written by Cameron Crowe, adapted from his 1981 book of the same name. As a freelance writer for Rolling Stone magazine,...  more

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  • 5


    Forest Whitaker, Keith David


    Directed byClint Eastwood

    Bird is a 1988 American biographical film, produced and directed by Clint Eastwood of a screenplay written by Joel Oliansky. The film is a tribute to the life and music of jazz saxophonist Charlie...  more
  • 6

    Vantage Point

    Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver


    Directed byPete Travis

    Vantage Point is a 2008 thriller film. It is directed by Pete Travis and stars Dennis Quaid, Forest Whitaker, Matthew Fox, William Hurt and Sigourney Weaver. The release date is set at February 15,...  more
  • 7

    The Color of Money

    Tom Cruise, Paul Newman


    Directed byMartin Scorsese

    The Color of Money is a 1986 drama film directed by Martin Scorsese from a screenplay by Richard Price, based on the 1984 novel of the same name by Walter Tevis. The film stars Paul Newman and Tom...  more

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  • 8

    Good Morning, Vietnam

    Robin Williams, Forest Whitaker


    Directed byBarry Levinson

    Good Morning, Vietnam is a 1987 American comedy film written by Mitch Markowitz and directed by Barry Levinson. Set in Saigon in 1965, during Vietnam, the film stars Robin Williams as a radio DJ on...  more

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  • 9

    Street Kings

    Keanu Reeves, Hugh Laurie


    Directed byDavid Ayer

    Street Kings is a 2008 American action thriller film directed by David Ayer, and starring Keanu Reeves, Forest Whitaker, Hugh Laurie, Chris Evans, Common and The Game. It was released in theaters on...  more
  • 10

    Where the Wild Things Are

    Mark Ruffalo, Forest Whitaker


    Directed bySpike Jonze

    Where the Wild Things Are is a 2009 fantasy drama film directed by Spike Jonze. Written by Jonze and Dave Eggers, it is adapted from Maurice Sendak's 1963 children's book of the same name. It...  more

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  • 11

    The Butler

    Mariah Carey, Robin Williams


    Directed byLee Daniels

    The Butler is a 2013 American historical drama film directed and produced by Lee Daniels and written by Danny Strong. Loosely based on the real life of Eugene Allen, the film stars Forest Whitaker as...  more

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  • 12

    Jason's Lyric

    Jada Pinkett Smith, Forest Whitaker


    Directed byDoug McHenry

    Jason's Lyric is a 1994 romantic drama film, written by Bobby Smith, Jr, and directed by Doug McHenry, who co-produced the film with George Jackson and Marilla Lane Ross. Both Jackson and McHenry...  more

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  • 13


    Michelle Williams, Ben Kingsley


    Directed byRoger Donaldson

    Species is a 1995 American science fiction horror film directed by Roger Donaldson, and starring Natasha Henstridge, Ben Kingsley, Michael Madsen, Alfred Molina, Forest Whitaker and Marg...  more

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  • 14

    The Crying Game

    Forest Whitaker, Jim Broadbent


    Directed byNeil Jordan

    The Crying Game is a 1992 British psychological thriller drama film written and directed by Neil Jordan. The film explores themes of race, gender, nationality, and sexuality against the backdrop of...  more

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  • 15

    Our Family Wedding

    America Ferrera, Forest Whitaker


    Directed byRick Famuyiwa

    Our Family Wedding is a 2010 comedy film directed by Rick Famuyiwa and written by Wayne Conley, Rick Famuyiwa and Malcolm Spellman....  more
  • 16

    Panic Room

    Kristen Stewart, Nicole Kidman


    Directed byDavid Fincher

    Panic Room is a 2002 American thriller film directed by David Fincher and written by David Koepp. The film stars Jodie Foster and Kristen Stewart as a mother and daughter whose new home is invaded....  more

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  • 17

    Vision Quest

    Madonna, Forest Whitaker


    Directed byHarold Becker

    Vision Quest is a 1985 coming of age drama film starring Matthew Modine, Linda Fiorentino, and Ronny Cox. It is based on Terry Davis' novel of the same name. Modine plays a Spokane high school...  more

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  • 18

    Out of the Furnace

    Zoe Saldana, Christian Bale


    Directed byScott Cooper

    Out of the Furnace is a 2013 American thriller film, directed by Scott Cooper, from a screenplay written by Cooper and Brad Ingelsby. Produced by Ridley Scott and Leonardo DiCaprio, the film stars...  more
  • 19

    The Air I Breathe

    Sarah Michelle Gellar, Kevin Bacon


    Directed byJieho Lee

    The Air I Breathe is the 2007 directorial film debut of Korean-American filmmaker Jieho Lee, who co-wrote the script with Bob DeRosa. It stars Kevin Bacon, Julie Delpy, Brendan Fraser, Andy Garcia,...  more
  • 20


    Madeleine Stowe, Richard Dreyfuss


    Directed byJohn Badham

    Stakeout is a 1987 comedy film directed by John Badham and starring Richard Dreyfuss, Emilio Estevez, Madeleine Stowe, Aidan Quinn, and Forest Whitaker. The screenplay was written by Jim Kouf, who...  more
  • 21


    Ashley Judd, Forest Whitaker


    Directed byPaul Auster, Wayne Wang

    Smoke is a 1995 American independent film. It was produced by Hisami Kuroiwa, Harvey Weinstein and Bob Weinstein and directed by Wayne Wang and Paul Auster. Among others, it features Harvey Keitel,...  more
  • 22

    A Rage in Harlem

    Forest Whitaker, Danny Glover


    Directed byBill Duke

    A Rage in Harlem is a 1991 American film starring Forest Whitaker, Danny Glover, Badja Djola, Robin Givens and Gregory Hines and loosely based on Chester Himes' novel of the same name....  more
  • 23


    Robert De Niro, 50 Cent


    Directed byJessy Terrero

    Freelancers is a crime-drama film directed by Jessy Terrero, and stars 50 Cent, Forest Whitaker, and Robert De Niro. Filming took place in New Orleans, Louisiana. It had a limited release in theaters...  more
  • 24

    Johnny Handsome

    Morgan Freeman, Mickey Rourke


    Directed byWalter Hill

    Johnny Handsome is an 1989 American crime-drama film directed by Walter Hill and starring Mickey Rourke, Ellen Barkin and Morgan Freeman. The film was written by Ken Friedman, and adapted from the...  more
  • 25

    The Last King of Scotland

    Kerry Washington, Gillian Anderson


    Directed byKevin Macdonald

    The Last King of Scotland is a 2006 British fiction drama film based on Giles Foden's novel of the same name, adapted by screenwriters Peter Morgan and Jeremy Brock, and directed by Kevin MacDonald....  more

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