Top 250 Performances of All-Time by Actresses in a Leading Role

by Aunt-Peg | created - 12 Mar 2011 | updated - 19 Jan 2013 | Public

These are the 250 top actresses and their performances listed alphabetically. To be included in this list an actress must have had a notable leading role. Notable supporting performances are also included.

1. Isabelle Adjani

Actress | Possession

Isabelle Yasmine Adjani was born in Gennevilliers, Hauts-de-Seine, a suburb of Paris, to Emma Augusta "Gusti" (Schweinberger) and Mohammed Adjani. Her father was a Kabyle Algerian, from Iferhounène, and her mother was a Bavarian German. She grew up speaking German fluently. After winning a school ...

The Story of Adele H, Skirt Day

2. Oksana Akinshina

Actress | Lilja 4-ever

Oksana Akinshina was born on April 19, 1987 in Leningrad, RSFSR, USSR as Oksana Aleksandrovna Akinshina. She is an actress, known for Lilya 4-Ever (2002), The Bourne Supremacy (2004) and Sisters (2001). She was previously married to Archil Gelovani and Dmitriy Litvinov.

Lilya 4-ever

3. Jane Alexander

Actress | Kramer vs. Kramer

Angular in features, reserved in demeanor and more-or-less plaintive in appearance, actress Jane Alexander has played down the glamour card for the most part. Her true brilliance has come from the remarkable range and depth of her talent. Heralded as one of the finest 70s actresses to arrive in ...

Testament

4. Maria Conchita Alonso

Actress | The Running Man

Maria Conchita Alonso was born Maria Concepcion Alonso Bustillo on June 29, 1957 in Cienfuegos, Cuba, but raised in Caracas, Venezuela. She was crowned Miss Teenager World in 1971 and later as Miss Distrito Federal became the first runner up in the Miss Venezuela 1975 competition placing later that...

Caught

5. Bibi Andersson

Actress | Persona

Her artistic dreams came early in life and were further supported by her older sister Gerd Andersson who became a ballet dancer at the Royal Opera and made her acting debut in 1951. Bibi, on the other side, had to make do with bit parts and commercials. She debuted in Dum-Bom (1953), playing ...

Persona, Wild Strawberries

6. Gillian Anderson

Actress | The X Files

Gillian Anderson was born in Chicago, Illinois, to Rosemary Alyce (Lane), a computer analyst, and Homer Edward Anderson III, who owned a film post-production company. Gillian started her career as a member of an amateur actor group while at high school. In 1987, her love of the theatre took her to ...

The House of Mirth

7. Julie Andrews

Actress | The Sound of Music

Julia Elizabeth Wells was born on October 1, 1935, in England. Her mother, Barbara Ward (Morris), and stepfather, both vaudeville performers, discovered her freakish but undeniably lovely four-octave singing voice and immediately got her a singing career. She performed in music halls throughout her...

The Sound of Music

8. Ann-Margret

Actress | Bye Bye Birdie

Actress and singer Ann-Margret is one of the most famous sex symbols and actresses of the 1960s and beyond. She continued her career through the following decades and into the 21st century.

Ann-Margret was born Ann-Margret Olsson in Valsjöbyn, Jämtland County, Sweden, to Anna Regina (Aronsson) and ...

Tommy

9. Susan Anspach

Actress | Five Easy Pieces

Susan Anspach was born on November 23, 1942 in Queens, New York City, New York, USA as Susan Florence Anspach. She was an actress, known for Five Easy Pieces (1970), Play It Again, Sam (1972) and Blume in Love (1973). She was married to Sherwood Ball and Mark Goddard. She died on April 2, 2018 in ...

Montenegro

10. Jean Arthur

Actress | Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

This marvelous screen comedienne's best asset was only muffled during her seven years' stint in silent films. That asset? It was, of course, her squeaky, frog-like voice, which silent-era cinema audiences had simply no way of perceiving, much less appreciating. Jean Arthur, born Gladys Georgianna ...

The Whole Town's Talking, Mr Deeds Goes to Torn, You Can't Take It With You, Mr Smith Goes to Washington, A Foreign Affair

11. Ariane Ascaride

Actress | Marius et Jeannette

Ariane Ascaride was born on October 10, 1954 in Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhône, France. She is an actress and director, known for Marius and Jeannette (1997), Armenia (2006) and The Town Is Quiet (2000). She has been married to Robert Guédiguian since 1975. They have two children.

Marianne and Her Two Lovers

12. Sabine Azéma

Actress | Mélo

Sabine Azéma was born on September 20, 1949 in Paris, France. She is an actress and director, known for Mélo (1986), A Sunday in the Country (1984) and Private Fears In Public Places (Coeurs) (2006).

Smoking/No Smoking, Wild Grass, Private Fears in Public Places, Love unto Death, Melo

13. Carroll Baker

Actress | Baby Doll

Carroll Baker was born on May 28, 1931 in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, the daughter of a traveling salesman, William W. Baker. She attended community college for a year and then worked as a dancer and magician's assistant. After a brief marriage, she had a small part in Easy to Love (1953), did TV ...

Baby Doll

14. Josiane Balasko

Actress | Gazon maudit

Josiane Balasko was born on April 15, 1950 in Paris, France as Josiane Balaskovic. She is an actress and writer, known for French Twist (1995), A French Gigolo (2008) and The Hedgehog (2009). She has been married to George Aguilar since June 12, 2003. She was previously married to Philippe Berry.

The Hedgehog, That Woman, La Libertine

15. Anne Bancroft

Actress | The Graduate

Anne Bancroft was born on September 17, 1931 in the Bronx, the daughter of Michael Italiano (1905-2001), a dress pattern maker, and Mildred DiNapoli (1908-2010), a telephone operator, both of whom were the children of Italian immigrants. She made her cinema debut in Don't Bother to Knock (1952) in ...

The Miracle Worker, The Graduate, The Pumpkin Eater, 'night Mother

16. Tallulah Bankhead

Actress | Lifeboat

Tallulah Brockman Bankhead was born on January 31, 1902 in Huntsville, Alabama. Her father was a mover and shaker in the Democratic Party who served as Speaker of the United States House of Representatives from June 4, 1936, to September 16, 1940. Tallulah had been interested in acting and, at age ...

Lifeboat

17. Nathalie Baye

Actress | Catch Me If You Can

Nathalie Baye was born on July 6, 1948 in Mainneville, Eure, France. She is an actress, known for Catch Me If You Can (2002), Laurence Anyways (2012) and Venus Beauty (1999).

Venus Beauty Institute, A Pornographic Affair, The Flower of Evil, The Young Lieutenant

18. Emmanuelle Béart

Actress | 8 femmes

Emmanuelle Béart was born August 14, 1963, in Gassin, France. She lived with her mother, brothers, and sister on a farm not far from Saint-Tropez in Provence (southern France), because her father, singer and poet Guy Béart, did not want his children to be affected by the glamour world of Paris. ...

Strayed

19. Ingrid Bergman

Actress | Casablanca

Ingrid Bergman was one of the greatest actresses from Hollywood's lamented Golden Era. Her natural and unpretentious beauty and her immense acting talent made her one of the most celebrated figures in the history of American cinema. Bergman is also one of the most Oscar-awarded actresses, tied with ...

Casablanca, Gaslight, Joan of Arc, Notorious, Anastasia & Autumn Sonata

20. Marilou Berry

Actress | Comme une image

Marilou Berry was born on February 1, 1983 in Paris, France. She is an actress and writer, known for Look at Me (2004), Ugly Melanie (2008) and The New Adventures of Cinderella (2017).

Look at Me

21. Jacqueline Bisset

Actress | Bullitt

Jacqueline Bisset has been an international film star since the late 1960s. She received her first roles mainly because of her stunning beauty, but over time she has become a fine actress respected by fans and critics alike. Bisset has worked with directors John Huston, François Truffaut, George ...

The Sleepy Time Gal

22. Brenda Blethyn

Actress | Pride & Prejudice

After twenty years of hard work on stage and both television and film, there are not many other actresses who deserved the success, recognition and stardom which Brenda Blethyn has now achieved.

Born in 1946 in Ramsgate, Kent, England, she started her career at British Rail in the 1960s. Saving ...

Grown Ups, Secrets and Lies, London River

23. Florinda Bolkan

Actress | Cari genitori

A sensual, versatile legend of arthouse and grindhouse Italian cinema, Florinda Bolkan was born Florinda Soares Bulcão in Uruburetama, Ceará, Brazil, as the youngest of three children from a Brazilian father and an Indios mother. Her father, diplomat José Pedro Soares Bulcão, died when she was 14, ...

A Brief Vacation

24. Beulah Bondi

Actress | It's a Wonderful Life

Character actress Beulah Bondi was a favorite of directors and audiences and is one of the reasons so many films from the 1930s and 1940s remain so enjoyable, as she was an integral part of many of the ensemble casts (a hallmark of the studio system) of major and/or great films, including The Trail...

Make Way For Tomorrow, Track of the Cat

25. Sandrine Bonnaire

Actress | Sans toit ni loi

Sandrine Bonnaire was born on May 31, 1967 in Gannat, Allier, France. She is an actress and director, known for Vagabond (1985), À Nos Amours (1983) and La Cérémonie (1995). She was previously married to Guillaume Laurant.

Vagabond, Joan of Arc, Secret Defense, La Ceremonie

26. Louise Brooks

Actress | Die Büchse der Pandora

Mary Louise Brooks, also known by her childhood name of Brooksie, was born in the midwestern town of Cherryvale, Kansas, on November 14, 1906. She began dancing at an early age with the Denishawn Dancers (which was how she left Kansas and went to New York) and then with George White's Scandals ...

Pandora's Box, Diary of a Lost Girl

27. Ellen Burstyn

Actress | Requiem for a Dream

Ellen Burstyn was born in Detroit, Michigan, to Correine Marie (Hamel) and John Austin Gillooly. She is of Irish, French/French-Canadian, Pennsylvania Dutch (German), and Native American ancestry.. She worked a number of jobs before she became an actress. At 14, she was a short-order cook at a ...

Providence, Resurrection, A Dream of Passion, The Last Picture Show

28. Margit Carstensen

Actress | Die bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant

Margit Carstensen was born on February 29, 1940 in Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. She is known for her work on The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (1972), Martha (1974) and Shattered Glass (2002).

Martha, Satan's Brew

29. Stockard Channing

Actress | Grease

One of Broadway and Hollywood's cleverer talents who tends to shine a smart, cynical light on her surroundings, Stockard Channing was born Susan Williams Antonia Stockard on February 13, 1944 in New York City, to a Catholic family with English and Irish ancestry. Her parents were Mary Alice (nee ...

Six Degrees of Separation

30. Geraldine Chaplin

Actress | Hable con ella

Geraldine Leigh Chaplin was born in Santa Monica, California, to Oona Chaplin (née O'Neill) and legendary entertainer Charles Chaplin (A.K.A. Charlie Chaplin). She is a granddaughter of playwright Eugene O'Neill and a great-granddaughter of stage actor James O'Neill. She attended the Royal Ballet ...

Cria, Nashville, A Wedding

31. Tsilla Chelton

Actress | Pandora'nin kutusu

Tsilla Chelton was born on June 21, 1919 in Jerusalem, Palestine as Tsilla Schilton. She was an actress, known for Pandora's Box (2008), Auntie Danielle (1990) and The Musketeer (2001). She was married to Jacques Noël. She died on July 15, 2012 in Brussels, Belgium.

Tatie Danielle

32. Maggie Cheung

Actress | Fa yeung nin wah

Maggie Cheung was born on September 20, 1964, in Hong Kong, and moved at the age of eight with her family to England. After finishing secondary school, she returned to Hong Kong, where she began modeling and appearing in commercials. In 1983 she participated in the Ms. Hong Kong pageant, winning ...

The Actress, In the Mood for Love

33. Julie Christie

Actress | Doctor Zhivago

Julie Christie, the British movie legend whom Al Pacino called "the most poetic of all actresses," was born in Chabua, Assam, India, on April 14, 1940, the daughter of Rosemary (Ramsden), a painter, and Francis St. John "Frank" Christie, a tea planter. The young Christie grew up on her father's ...

Darling, Petulia, Don't Look Now, Demon Seed, Memoirs of a Survivor, Afterglow, Away From Her

34. Jill Clayburgh

Actress | Bridesmaids

It came as no surprise to film aficionados when, in 1999, Entertainment Weekly named Jill Clayburgh on its list of Hollywood's 25 Greatest Actresses. For decades, she delivered stellar performances in a wide variety of roles.

Jill Clayburgh was born in 1944 in New York City, into a wealthy family, ...

An Unmarried Woman, La Luna, I'm Dancing As Fast As I Can

35. Glenn Close

Actress | Fatal Attraction

Seven time Academy Award-nominated actress Glenn Close was born and raised in Greenwich, Connecticut. She is the daughter of Bettine (Moore) and William Taliaferro Close (William Close), a prominent doctor. Both of her parents were from upper-class northeastern families.

Glenn was a noted Broadway ...

The World According to Garp, Dangerous Liaisons

36. Claudette Colbert

Actress | It Happened One Night

One of the brightest film stars to grace the screen was born Emilie Claudette Chauchoin on September 13, 1903, in Saint Mandé, France where her father owned a bakery at 57, rue de la République (now Avenue Général de Gaulle). The family moved to the United States when she was three. As Claudette ...

Cleopatra, Imitation of Life, The Palm Beach Story

37. Toni Collette

Actress | The Sixth Sense

Toni Collette is an Academy Award-nominated Australian actress, best known for her roles in The Sixth Sense (1999) and Little Miss Sunshine (2006).

Collette was born Toni Collett (she later added an "e") on November 1, 1972, in Blacktown, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. She is the first of three...

Muriel's Wedding, Lillian's Story

38. Ruth Cracknell

Actress | Mother and Son

Ruth Cracknell was born on July 6, 1925 in Maitland, New South Wales, Australia as Ruth Winifred Cracknell. She was an actress, known for Mother and Son (1984), The Night, the Prowler (1978) and Lilian's Story (1996). She was married to Eric Phillips. She died on May 13, 2002 in Sydney, New South ...

The Night The Prowler

39. Joan Crawford

Actress | What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

Joan Crawford was born Lucille Fay LeSueur on March 23, 1904, in San Antonio, Texas, to Anna Belle (Johnson) and Thomas E. LeSueur, a laundry laborer. By the time she was born, her parents had separated, and by the time she was a teenager, she'd had three stepfathers. It wasn't an easy life; ...

A Woman's Face, Susan and God, Mildred Pierce, Possessed, Humoresque, The Damned Don't Cry, Flamingo Road, Harriet Craig, Johnny Guitar, Sudden Fear, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

40. Henrietta Crosman

Actress | Charlie Chan's Secret

Henrietta Crosman was born on September 2, 1861 in Wheeling, West Virginia, USA as Henrietta Foster Crosman. She was an actress, known for Charlie Chan's Secret (1936), The Royal Family of Broadway (1930) and The Right to Live (1935). She was married to Maurice Campbell and Sedley Brown. She died ...

Pilgrimage

41. Lindsay Crouse

Actress | The Arrival

Lindsay Crouse was born on May 12, 1948 in New York City, New York, USA as Lindsay Ann Crouse. She is an actress, known for The Arrival (1996), Slap Shot (1977) and The Insider (1999). She has been married to Rick Blue since 1998. She was previously married to David Mamet.

House of Games

42. Penélope Cruz

Actress | Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Known outside her native country as the "Spanish enchantress", Penélope Cruz Sánchez was born in Madrid to Eduardo Cruz, a retailer, and Encarna Sánchez, a hairdresser. As a toddler, she was already a compulsive performer, re-enacting TV commercials for her family's amusement, but she decided to ...

Volver

43. Jamie Lee Curtis

Actress | True Lies

Jamie Lee Curtis was born on November 22, 1958 in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of legendary actors Janet Leigh and Tony Curtis. She got her big break at acting in 1978 when she won the role of Laurie Strode in Halloween (1978). After that, she became famous for roles in movies like Trading...

True Lies, Freaky Friday

44. Claire Danes

Actress | My So-Called Life

New Yorker Claire Catherine Danes was born in Manhattan, the daughter of Carla (Hall), a day-care provider and artist, and Christopher Danes, a computer consultant and photographer. She has an older brother, Asa. Her paternal grandfather, Gibson Andrew Danes, was a Dean of the Yale School of Art ...

Shopgirl

45. Marion Davies

Actress | Going Hollywood

Marion Cecelia Douras was born in the borough of Brooklyn, New York on January 3, 1897. She had been bitten by the show biz bug early as she watched her sisters perform in local stage productions. She wanted to do the same. As Marion got older, she tried out for various school plays and did fairly ...

The Patsy, Show People, Operator 13

46. Bette Davis

Actress | All About Eve

Ruth Elizabeth Davis was born April 5, 1908, in Lowell, Massachusetts, to Ruth Augusta (Favor) and Harlow Morrell Davis, a patent attorney. Her parents divorced when she was 10. She and her sister were raised by their mother. Her early interest was dance. To Bette, dancers led a glamorous life, but...

The Old Maid, Dark Victory, The Letter, The Great Lie, Now Voyager, The Little Foxes, Mr Skeffington, Beyond the Forest, All About Eve, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

47. Judy Davis

Actress | Husbands and Wives

Davis was educated at Loreto Convent and the Western Institute of Technology and graduated from the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) in 1977. She found international success with the role of Adela Quested in A Passage to India (1984). Her performance was nominated an Academy Award for Best...

A Passage to India, The Ref, Husbands and Wives, Winter of our Dreams, Hoodwink

48. Sammi Davis

Actress | Four Rooms

Sammi Davis was born on June 21, 1964 in Kidderminster, Worcestershire, England as Samantha Davis. She is known for her work on Four Rooms (1995), A Prayer for the Dying (1987) and Homefront (1991). She has been married to Simon Drew since June 21, 2009. She was previously married to Kurt Voss.

The Rainbow

49. Olivia de Havilland

Actress | The Heiress

Olivia Mary de Havilland was born July 1, 1916, in Tokyo, Japan, to British parents, Lilian Augusta (Ruse), a former actress, and Walter Augustus de Havilland, an English professor and patent attorney. Her sister, Joan, later to become famous as Joan Fontaine, was born the following year. Her ...

Gone With the Wind, The Heiress, The Snake Pit

50. Julie Delpy

Actress | Trois couleurs: Blanc

Julie Delpy was born in Paris, France, in 1969 to Albert Delpy and Marie Pillet, both actors.

She was first featured in Jean-Luc Godard's Detective (1985) at the age of fourteen. She has starred in many American and European productions since then, including Disney's The Three Musketeers (1993), ...

Before Sunset

51. Judi Dench

Actress | Skyfall

Dame Judi Dench was born Judith Olivia Dench in York, England, to Eleanora Olive (Jones), who was from Dublin, Ireland, and Reginald Arthur Dench, a doctor from Dorset, England. She attended Mount School in York, and studied at the Central School of Speech and Drama. She has performed with the ...

Mrs Brown, Notes from a Scandal

52. Catherine Deneuve

Actress | 8 femmes

Catherine Fabienne Deneuve was born October 22, 1943 in Paris, France. Her parents were actors. She made her movie debut in 1957, when she was barely a teenager and continued with small parts in minor films, until Roger Vadim gave her a meatier role in Vice and Virtue (1963). But her breakthrough ...

Repulsion, Belle de Jour, Mississippi Mermaid

53. Laura Dern

Actress | Jurassic Park

Laura Dern was born on February 10, 1967 in Los Angeles, the daughter of actors Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd. Dern was exposed to movie sets and the movie industry from infancy, and obtained several bit parts as a child. Her parents divorced when Dern was two and Dern lost contact with her father for ...

Citizen Ruth, Year of the Dog

54. Emmanuelle Devos

Actress | Rois et reine

Emmanuelle Devos was born on May 10, 1964 in Puteaux, Seine [now Hauts-de-Seine], France. She is an actress and director, known for Kings & Queen (2004), Read My Lips (2001) and Just a Sigh (2013).

Read My Lips, Kings and Queen

55. Marlene Dietrich

Soundtrack | Witness for the Prosecution

Her father was a police lieutenant and imbued in her a military attitude to life. Marlene was known in school for her "bedroom eyes" and her first affairs were at this stage in her life - a professor at the school was terminated. She entered the cabaret scene in 1920s Germany, first as a spectator ...

Morocoo, Shanghai Express, Blonde Venus, The Scarlet Empress, Rancho Notorious, Touch of Evil

56. Marie Dressler

Actress | Min and Bill

Once you saw her, you would not forget her. Despite her age and weight, she became one of the top box office draws of the sound era. She was 14 when she joined a theater group and she went on to work on stage and in light opera. By 1892, she was on Broadway and she later became a star comedienne on...

Emma, Dinner at Eight

57. Mary Duncan

Actress | Kismet

Mary Duncan went to Hollywood after critics praised her acting in the lead in "The Shanghai Gesture" on Broadway. While making Five and Ten (1931), she became friends with the film's lead, Marion Davies. The two attended a polo match, where Davies introduced Duncan to Stephen "Laddie" Sanford, an ...

City Girl

58. Faye Dunaway

Actress | Network

An icy, elegant blonde with a knack for playing complex and strong-willed female leads, enormously popular actress Faye Dunaway starred in several films which defined what many would come to call Hollywood's "second Golden Age." During her tenure at the top of the box office, she was a more than ...

Bonnie and Clyde, Network, Mommie Dearest, Arizona Dream

59. Irene Dunne

Actress | The Awful Truth

Irene Marie Dunne was born on December 20, 1898, in Louisville, Kentucky. She was the daughter of Joseph Dunne, who inspected steamships, and Adelaide Henry, a musician who prompted Irene in the arts. Her first production was in Louisville when she appeared in "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at the age...

The Magnificent Obsession, Show Boat, Theodora Goes Wild, Penny Serenade, Love Affair, The Awful Truth, I Remember Mama

60. Shelley Duvall

Actress | The Shining

Shelley Alexis Duvall was born in Fort Worth, Texas, the first child to Bobbie Ruth (Massengale, 1929-2020), a real estate broker, and Robert Richardson Duvall (1919-1994), a lawyer. At the time of her birth, her mother was visiting her grandmother in Fort Worth, though Duvall was raised in Houston...

3 Women, The Shining, Popeye, Nashville, Thieves Like Us

61. Lisa Eichhorn

Actress | The Vanishing

Lisa Eichhorn was born on February 4, 1952 in Glens Falls, New York, USA as Lisa Warren Eichhorn. She is an actress and writer, known for The Vanishing (1993), Cutter's Way (1981) and The Europeans (1979). She has been married to Richard Moxon since August 31, 2005. She was previously married to ...

Cutter's Way, Yanks

62. Maria Falconetti

Actress | La passion de Jeanne d'Arc

Renée Jeanne or Maria Falconetti, born in Pantin (not in Sermano, Corsica, as many film dictionaries wrongly attest) on July 21, 1892 and died in Buenos Aires on December 12, 1946, is a French actress of theater and cinema. Joining the troupe of the Odeon theater in 1916, she made her debut in "...

The Passion of Joan of Arc

63. Nisreen Faour

Actress | Amreeka

Nisreen Faour is a Palestinian actress

Faour was born in Tarshiha, Israel and moved to the United States to study theater and performance when she was 16. She studied theater directing at the University of Haifa. She has performed in a number of award - winning theatrical plays. She also appeared in...

Amreeka

64. Mia Farrow

Actress | Rosemary's Baby

Mia Farrow is the daughter of the director John Farrow and the actress and Tarzan-girl Maureen O'Sullivan. She debuted at the movies in 1959 in very small roles. She was noticed for the first time in the film Rosemary's Baby (1968) by Roman Polanski. She showed her talent also on TV and at the ...

Rosemary's Baby, A Wedding, Full Circle, A Midsummer Nights Sex Comedy, Broadway Danny Rose, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Hannah and Her Sisters, September, Alice, Husbands and Wives

65. Sally Field

Actress | Forrest Gump

Sally Margaret Field was born in 1946 in Pasadena, California, to actress Margaret Field (née Morlan) and salesman Richard Dryden Field. Her parents divorced in 1950 and her mother then married stuntman Jock Mahoney, and they had a daughter, Princess O'Mahoney. She also has a brother, Richard Field...

Norma Rae

66. Gracie Fields

Actress | Holy Matrimony

A comedienne and singer in the British Music Halls, she was the top box-office draw and the highest paid actress in Britain in the 1930's. Her Northern, working-class girl character was a favourite during the inter-war years.

Holy Matrimony, Molly and Me

67. Sheila Florance

Actress | Prisoner

Sheila Florance was born on July 24, 1916 in St. Kilda East, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia as Sheila Mary Florance. She was an actress, known for Prisoner: Cell Block H (1979), Mad Max (1979) and A Woman's Tale (1991). She was married to Jan (John) Adam Balawaider and Roger Lightfoot Oyston. She ...

The Tale of Ruby Rose, A Woman's Tale

68. Jane Fonda

Actress | Klute

Born in New York City to legendary screen star Henry Fonda and Ontario-born New York socialite Frances Seymour Brokaw, Jane Seymour Fonda was destined early to an uncommon and influential life in the limelight. Although she initially showed little inclination to follow her father's trade, she was ...

They Shoot Horses Don't They?, Klute, Julia, Coming Home, And If We All Live Together

69. Joan Fontaine

Actress | Suspicion

Born Joan de Beauvoir de Havilland on October 22, 1917, in Tokyo, Japan, in what was known as the International Settlement. Her father was a British patent attorney with a lucrative practice in Japan, but due to Joan and older sister Olivia de Havilland's recurring ailments the family moved to ...

Suspicion, Rebecca, Letter from an Unknown Woman

70. Jodie Foster

Actress | The Silence of the Lambs

Jodie Foster started her career at the age of two. For four years she made commercials and finally gave her debut as an actress in the TV series Mayberry R.F.D. (1968). In 1975 Jodie was offered the role of prostitute Iris Steensma in the movie Taxi Driver (1976). This role, for which she received ...

Taxi Driver, Candleshoe, Foxes, Carny, The Accused, The Silence of the Lambs, Carny, Stealing Home

71. Kerry Fox

Actress | Shallow Grave

Kerry Fox was born on July 30, 1966 in Wellington, New Zealand. She is an actress and writer, known for Shallow Grave (1994), Bright Star (2009) and An Angel at My Table (1990). She is married to Alexander Linklater. They have two children.

An Angel at My Table, Intimacy, Storm

72. Catherine Frot

Actress | Marguerite

Catherine Frot was born on May 1, 1956 in Paris, France. She is an actress and writer, known for Marguerite (2015), Un air de famille (1996) and Le Dîner de Cons (1998). She has been married to Michel Couvelard since 1987. They have one child.

Chaos

73. Deborra-Lee Furness

Actress | Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole

Deborra-Lee Furness was born on December 8, 1955 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. She is an actress and producer, known for Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole (2010), Shame (1988) and Jindabyne (2006). She has been married to Hugh Jackman since April 11, 1996. They have two ...

Shame

74. Charlotte Gainsbourg

Actress | Antichrist

Charlotte Gainsbourg was born in London, England in 1971. She is an Anglo-French actress and singer. The daughter of English actress Jane Birkin and French singer and songwriter Serge Gainsbourg, she was raised in Paris. Gainsbourg made her motion picture debut in 1984. In 1986, Gainsbourg won a ...

I Do

75. Greta Garbo

Actress | Ninotchka

Greta Garbo was born Greta Lovisa Gustafsson on September 18, 1905, in Stockholm, Sweden, to Anna Lovisa (Johansdotter), who worked at a jam factory, and Karl Alfred Gustafsson, a laborer. She was fourteen when her father died, which left the family destitute. Greta was forced to leave school and ...

A Woman of Affairs, Anna Christie, Queen Christina, Anna Karenina, Camille, Conquest, Ninotchka

76. Ava Gardner

Actress | The Night of the Iguana

Ava Lavina Gardner was born on December 24, 1922 in Grabtown, North Carolina, to Mary Elizabeth (née Baker) and Jonas Bailey Gardner. Born on a tobacco farm, where she got her lifelong love of earthy language and going barefoot, Ava grew up in the rural South. At age 18, her picture in the window ...

Pandora and the Flying Dutchman

77. Judy Garland

Actress | The Wizard of Oz

One of the brightest, most tragic movie stars of Hollywood's Golden Era, Judy Garland was a much-loved character whose warmth and spirit, along with her rich and exuberant voice, kept theatre-goers entertained with an array of delightful musicals.

She was born Frances Ethel Gumm on 10 June 1922 in ...

The Wizard of Oz, A Star is Born

78. Greer Garson

Actress | Mrs. Miniver

Eileen Evelyn Greer Garson was born on September 29, 1904 in London, England, to Nancy Sophia (Greer) and George Garson, a commercial clerk. She was of Scottish and Ulster-Scots descent. Her childhood was a normal if not non-descript life. Greer showed no early signs of interest in becoming an ...

Pride and Prejudice, Mrs Miniver, Random Harvest, The Valley of Decision

79. Janet Gaynor

Actress | A Star Is Born

Janet Gaynor was born Laura Gainor on October 6, 1906, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As a child, she & her parents moved to San Francisco, California, where she graduated from high school in 1923. She then moved to Los Angeles where she enrolled in a secretarial school. She got a job at a shoe ...

Street Angel, Seventh Heaven, Sunrise

80. Luminita Gheorghiu

Actress | 4 luni, 3 saptamâni si 2 zile

Luminita Gheorghiu studied Ion Cojar's acting method under Ion Cojar himself at what is now called the National University of Theatre and Film from Bucharest. She had played in tens of movies and theatre shows since her graduation in 1972, but her real international breakthrough came with a role in...

The Death of Mr. Lazarescu

81. Lillian Gish

Actress | The Night of the Hunter

Lillian Diana Gish was born on October 14, 1893, in Springfield, Ohio. Her father, James Lee Gish, was an alcoholic who caroused around, was rarely at home and left the family to more or less fend for themselves. To help make ends meet, Lillian, her sister Dorothy Gish and their mother, Mary Gish ...

Way Down East, True Heart Susie, The Scarlet Letter, The Wind, Night of the Hunter

82. Li Gong

Actress | Man cheng jin dai huang jin jia

Born in Shenyang, grew up in Jinan, the daughter of an economics professor. Loved music from childhood, and dreamed of a singing career. After failing to gain entrance to China's top music school in 1985, applied for and was admitted to the Central Drama Academy in Beijing, from which she graduated...

Raise the Red Lantern, The Story of Qiu Ju

83. Ruth Gordon

Actress | Rosemary's Baby

When Ruth Gordon convinced her father, a sea captain, to let her pursue acting she came to New York and studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. She acted in a few silents made at Fort Lee, New Jersey, in 1915. She made her Broadway debut in "Peter Pan" as Nibs the same year. The next 20 ...

Harold and Maude

84. Ann Harding

Actress | When Ladies Meet

Ann, born Dorothy Gatley, spent most of her childhood as an "army brat" constantly moving around before the family finally settled in New York. Ann first appeared on the stage while she spent a year attending Bryn Mawr College. She became a clerk and freelance script reader with a film company ...

Peter Ibbetson, Love from a Stranger

85. Jean Harlow

Actress | Bombshell

Harlean Carpenter, who later became Jean Harlow, was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 3, 1911. She was the daughter of a successful dentist and his wife. In 1927, at the age of 16, she ran away from home to marry a young businessman named Charles McGrew, who was 23. The couple pulled up ...

The Red Headed Woman, China Seas, Red Dust, Dinner at Eight, Hold Your Man

86. Jessica Harper

Actress | Suspiria

American actress-author-composer Jessica Harper was born on October 10, 1949 in Chicago, Illinois, to Eleanor (Emery), a writer, and Paul Church Harper, Jr., a painter who was chairman of the Needham Harper Worldwide advertising agency in NY. Jessica launched her professional acting career soon ...

Suspiria, Inserts

87. Julie Harris

Actress | The Haunting

One of the finest classical and contemporary leading ladies ever to grace the 20th century American stage, five-time Tony Award winner Julie Harris was rather remote and reserved on camera, finding her true glow in front of the theatre lights. The freckled, red-haired actress not only was nominated...

Member of the Wedding, East of Eden, The Haunting

88. Lisa Harrow

Actress | The Final Conflict

Intelligent and luminous red-haired Lisa Harrow was born in Auckland, New Zealand, on August 25, 1943. A scholarship from the New Zealand Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council is what sent Lisa studying abroad.

Accepted by the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, she later was invited to become a ...

The Last Days of Chez Nous

89. Elizabeth Hartman

Actress | A Patch of Blue

This slender, striking, red-haired, freckle-faced American leading lady, a Carnegie-Tech student in the 60s, made a stunning, sensitive film debut as the blind, abused, uneducated white girl who falls in love with compassionate Sidney Poitier in the racially charged drama A Patch of Blue (1965). ...

A Patch of Blue

90. Susan Hayward

Actress | I Want to Live!

Susan Hayward was born Edythe Marrener in Brooklyn, New York, on June 30, 1917. Her father was a transportation worker, and Susan lived a fairly comfortable life as a child, but the precocious little redhead had no idea of the life that awaited her. She attended public school in Brooklyn, where she...

I Want to Live

91. Rita Hayworth

Actress | Gilda

Rita Hayworth was born Margarita Carmen Cansino on October 17, 1918, in Brooklyn, New York, into a family of dancers. Her father, Eduardo Cansino Reina, was a dancer as was his father before him. He emigrated from Spain in 1913. Rita's American mother, Volga Margaret (Hayworth), who was of mostly ...

Gilda

92. Noni Hazlehurst

Actress | Candy

Noni Hazlehurst was born on August 17, 1953 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia as Leonie Elva Hazlehurst. She is an actress, known for Candy (2006), Little Fish (2005) and Monkey Grip (1982).

Monkey Grip

93. Mariel Hemingway

Actress | Manhattan

Mariel Hemingway was born on November 22, 1961 in Mill Valley, California, USA as Mariel Hadley Hemingway. She is an actress and producer, known for Manhattan (1979), Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987) and The Sex Monster (1999). She was previously married to Stephen Crisman.

Personal Best, Star 80

94. Shirley Henderson

Actress | Star Wars: Episode IX - The Rise of Skywalker

Shirley Henderson was the eldest of three sisters born into a working-class family in the village of Kincardine in Fife, Scotland. As a teenager she sang locally and performed in school drama clubs. Her first break came when she watched a singer on the Opportunity Knocks (1956) TV talent program ...

Wonderland, Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself, Life During Wartime

95. Audrey Hepburn

Actress | Breakfast at Tiffany's

Audrey Hepburn was born as Audrey Kathleen Ruston on May 4, 1929 in Ixelles, Brussels, Belgium. Her mother, Baroness Ella Van Heemstra, was a Dutch noblewoman, while her father, Joseph Victor Anthony Ruston, was born in Úzice, Bohemia, to English and Austrian parents.

After her parents' divorce, ...

Roman Holiday, Sabrina, The Children's Hour, Breakfast at Tiffanys, Two For The Road

96. Katharine Hepburn

Actress | The Lion in Winter

Katharine Hepburn was born on May 12, 1907 in Hartford, Connecticut to a suffragist and a doctor who both always encouraged her to speak her mind, develop it fully, and exercise her body to its full potential. An athletic tomboy as a child, she was very close to her brother Tom; at 14 she was ...

Alice Adams, Bringing Up Baby, Sylvia Scarlet, Woman of the Year, Pat and Mike, Desk Top, Summertime, Long Days Journey Into Night, Suddenly Last Summer, The Lion in Winter, A Delicate Balance

97. Wendy Hiller

Actress | Murder on the Orient Express

Wendy Hiller, daughter of Frank and Marie Hiller, was born on 15th August 1912 in Bramhall, near Stockport, Cheshire, England. She was educated at Winceby House School, Bexhill then moved on to Manchester Repertory Theatre. She appeared on stage in Sir John Barry's tour of Evensong, then as Sally ...

Pygmalion, Major Barbara, Sons and Lovers, A Man For All Seasons

98. Sacha Horler

Actress | Peter Rabbit

Sacha Horler was born on February 12, 1971 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. She is known for her work on Peter Rabbit (2018), The Letdown (2017) and The Dressmaker (2015).

Praise

99. Wendy Hughes

Actress | Return to Eden

Wendy Hughes was an accomplished actress who had won over 13 major awards. She had been called "one of the world's great actresses" with "the beauty and talent to become an international star". Hughes was born in Melbourne and studied at the National Institute of Dramatic Art. She has two children,...

Lonely Hearts, My First Wife

100. Holly Hunter

Actress | The Piano

Holly Hunter was born in Conyers, Georgia, to Opal Marguerite (Catledge), a homemaker, and Charles Edwin Hunter, a part-time sporting goods company representative and farmer with a 250 acre farm. She is the youngest of seven children. Her parents encouraged her talent at an early age, and her first...

Broadcast News, The Piano, Living Out Loud, Thirteen



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