Julie Andrews
AMC Movie List

The 50 Greatest Actresses of All Time

Filmsite.org‘s Tim Dirks spotlights the top 50 actresses in Hollywood history. Which one is your favorite?

rank title points votes your vote
1 Bette Davis
She had offbeat looks and a quirky voice, but when Davis was onscreen everyone else disappeared.
7998 22596
2 Katharine Hepburn
She made casual elegant and relocated the seat of sex appeal from the bosom to the brain in Bringing Up Baby and Adam's Rib.
4660 15530
3 Ingrid Bergman
Soulful star Bergman made doomed romance look good in Casablanca and self-loathing even better in Notorious.
4181 15485
4 Meryl Streep
Boss from hell, Holocaust survivor, and frustrated housewife -- is there anyone Streep can't play?
3639 20405
5 Marilyn Monroe
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, The Seven Year Itch, and Some Like it Hot showcased the buxom, blue-eyed blonde's comic gifts.
3568 29958
6 Vivien Leigh
The Gone With the Wind star made fewer than two dozen movies, but the combination of icy beauty and inner fire made her unforgettable.
2823 13705
7 Olivia de Havilland
Gone With the Wind made the dark-haired beauty a star, but ten years later she played a shy spinster in The Heiress.
2679 21863
8 Audrey Hepburn
In a world of pneumatic blondes, Hepburn made smart, complicated brunette sprites sexy in Roman Holiday and Sabrina.
2508 7868
9 Barbara Stanwyck
From Double Indemnity to The Lady Eve, Stanwyck was a lean live wire with an alluringly husky voice.
2076 5766
10 Ava Gardner
She wasn't much of an actress, but Gardner had the looks that transformed a tobacco farmer's daughter into a pop-culture goddess.
1640 5154
11 Kate Winslet
At 17, Winslet wowed moviegoers as a sociopathic teen in Heavenly Creatures. She's never shied away from offbeat characters.
1635 14703
12 Rita Hayworth
A Hollywood makeover turned Latina dancer Margarita Cansino into a red-haired pinup and erotic icon.
1629 4791
13 Elizabeth Taylor
Taylor could act when she wanted to, as in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, and even when she didn't her looks sufficed.
1620 6596
14 Judy Garland
Talented but insecure, Garland was the little girl with a voice big enough to inspire everyone who felt out of step with the world.
1511 4969
15 Joan Crawford
No one worked harder. From Our Dancing Daughters to Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, she remained in the limelight.
1096 4492
16 Joan Fontaine
Olivia de Havilland's younger sister was the quintessential cool, classy Hitchcock blonde and won an Oscar for Suspicion.
1064 4900
17 Claudette Colbert
Colbert could do just about anything -- historical dramas, women's weepies, musicals -- but she was the quintessential runaway heiress.
1047 5311
18 Jodie Foster
Precocious child actress Foster matured into a brainy Oscar-winning beauty in dramas like The Accused and The Silence of the Lambs.
1045 6427
19 Natalie Wood
As a child star (Miracle on 34th Street), teen idol (Rebel Without a Cause), and ingenue (West Side Story), Wood always sparkled.
773 4841
20 Cate Blanchett
Blanchett sexed up the queen in Elizabeth and turned men's blood to ice as a Nazi in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.
762 4884
21 Judi Dench
Dench has been a woman for all seasons, equally able to steal 1998's Shakespeare in Love and put James Bond in his place.
735 4255
22 Maureen O’Hara
From The Quiet Man to Miracle on 34th Street, O'Hara brought a dash of color to every movie she made.
569 3631
23 Lauren Bacall
In The Big Sleep, the young Bacall's sultry voice and tough-girl swagger captivated men and women alike.
562 3570
24 Julie Andrews
She sang like an angel in Mary Poppins and made fun of her sweetness-and-light image in S.O.B.
535 4229
25 Greta Garbo
The Swedish-born Garbo had plenty of beauty and talent to spare, but her mystery made her a legend.
490 3268
26 Sophia Loren
An Italian bombshell with talent as generous as her curves, Loren could be sultry, funny, and heartbreaking.
461 3891
27 Grace Kelly
Before becoming Princess Grace of Monaco, she was the impossibly elegant star of Rear Window and Dial M for Murder.
455 3953
28 Sally Field
Refusing to be stereotyped as the perky star of TV's Flying Nun, Field reinvented herself as a gutsy movie actress in Norma Rae.
451 4277
29 Myrna Loy
Witty and urbane, Loy excelled in the Thin Man movies, playing the brainier half of society sleuths Nick and Nora.
446 3346
30 Sandra Bullock
Bullock is the girl next door -- smart, nice, pretty, loyal, and fun. Who cares if her movies are forgettable?
431 5439
31 Deborah Kerr
British beauty Kerr specialized in channeling the hidden heat beneath the brittle, high-strung facade.
424 3154
32 Julia Roberts
Pretty Woman catapulted the coltish Roberts to stardom, and her megawatt smile continues to light up comedies and dramas.
414 5474
33 Shirley MacLaine
An energetic redhead with a saucy smile, MacLaine made hooking seem wholesome in Irma la Douce and Sweet Charity.
404 4182
34 Marlene Dietrich
Louche, leggy, and decadently languid, Dietrich brought European sophistication to Hollywood and kissed a girl in thirties Morocco.
384 3128
35 Susan Hayward
Modeling got Hayward to Hollywood, where she delivered wrenching performances in Smash-Up and I Want to Live!
370 3048
36 Diane Keaton
Often daffy but never dumb, Keaton was equally at home in Annie Hall and the Godfather trilogy.
312 4410
37 Natalie Portman
Portman gives her all to every role, from a 12-year-old assassin (The Professional) to a ballerina losing her grip on reality (Black Swan).
310 5012
38 Nicole Kidman
Kidman's range -- which includes comedy, action, and serious drama -- is as striking as her fiery red hair.
300 4762
39 Carole Lombard
She could have coasted on her platinum-blonde looks, but Lombard showed she had sublime comic timing in My Man Godfrey.
258 2914
40 Ginger Rogers
Rogers could sing, dance, and had enough sex appeal that it rubbed off on Fred Astaire, with whom she starred in Top Hat.
179 2969
41 Jean Harlow
"Would you be shocked if I put on something more comfortable?" asked the bombshell in Hell's Angels, and a bad-girl cliche was born.
111 2793
42 Doris Day
Day's perky, fresh-faced image was the antithesis of her hard-knocks life, but she never broke character.
107 3133
43 Jean Arthur
Arthur excelled at playing brisk, witty, no-nonsense career girls who could go toe-to-toe with any man.
100 2830
44 Jane Fonda
Fonda defied the Establishment, going from generic starlet (Walk on the Wild Side) to sex kitten (Barbarella) to Oscar winner (Klute).
17 4349
45 Mary Pickford
Wholesomely pretty, America's Sweetheart was the first real movie star and co-founded the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
-127 2677
46 Reese Witherspoon
She may be tiny, but she can go from cute (Legally Blonde) to formidable (Walk the Line) in an instant.
-237 4563
47 Angelina Jolie
The Tesla roadster of actresses, Jolie is the rare woman who looks like Lara Croft and talks like Mother Teresa.
-345 5613
48 Mae West
The star of the sex farces She Done Him Wrong and I'm No Angel, the full-figured West was queen of the bawdy double entendre.
-461 3051
49 Barbra Streisand
Her mother said she wasn't pretty enough, but brassy Barbra from Brooklyn won an Oscar for her first film, Funny Girl.
-519 4063
50 Halle Berry
A teenage beauty-pageant winner, Berry dressed down to star in Monster's Ball, proving she's more than a (very) pretty face.
-721 4661