Actresses - Great

by angelikafauve | created - 19 Apr 2011 | updated - 05 Apr 2015 | Public

Great Actresses of Today and Yesterday

1. Carroll Baker

Actress | Baby Doll

Carroll Baker was born Karolina Piekarski on May 28, 1931 in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, the daughter of a traveling salesman. 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"

2. Elizabeth Ashley

Actress | Stagecoach

Love her or not, award-winning actress Elizabeth Ashley can always be counted on to give her all. Grand in style, exotic in looks, divinely outgoing in personality and an engaging interpreter of Tennessee Williams' florid Southern-belles on stage, she was born Elizabeth Ann Cole on August 30, 1939,...

3. Ali MacGraw

Actress | Love Story

Ali MacGraw was born on April 1, 1939 in Pound Ridge, New York, USA as Elizabeth Alice MacGraw. She is an actress, known for Love Story (1970), Goodbye, Columbus (1969) and The Getaway (1972). She was previously married to Steve McQueen, Robert Evans and Robin Martin Hoen.

"Love Story"

4. Claire Bloom

Actress | Limelight

Age has not taken the flower off this Bloom. The well-known and respected stage, screen and television actress Claire Bloom, originally named Patricia Claire Blume, continues to be in demand as a septuagenarian actress and looks as beautiful as ever.

She was born Patricia Claire Bloom on February 15...

5. Vanessa Redgrave

Actress | Atonement

On January 30, 1937, renowned theatre actor Michael Redgrave was performing in a production of Hamlet in London. During the curtain call, the show's lead, Laurence Olivier, announced to the audience: "tonight a great actress was born". This was in reference to his co-star's newborn daughter, ...

"Blow up"

6. Lynn Redgrave

Actress | Gods and Monsters

Actress of both the English and American stage and screen, Lynn Redgrave was born in Marylebone, London, England, into one of the world's most famous acting dynasties. As the daughter of Rachel Kempson and Sir Michael Redgrave, sister of Vanessa Redgrave and Corin Redgrave, and granddaughter of Roy...

7. Debbie Reynolds

Actress | Singin' in the Rain

Debbie Reynolds was born Mary Frances Reynolds in El Paso, Texas, the second child of Maxine N. (Harmon) and Raymond Francis Reynolds, a carpenter for the Southern Pacific Railroad. Her film career began at MGM after she won a beauty contest at age 16 impersonating Betty Hutton. Reynolds wasn't a ...

8. Faye Dunaway

Actress | Network

One of the great models who transitioned successfully into acting, Faye Dunaway was one of the hottest actresses of the 1970s, playing neurotic, highly-driven, and intelligent women with sex appeal, who matched her male powerful contemporaries. Her most notable roles include Bonnie and Clyde (1967)...

"The Thomas Crown affair", "Bonnie & Clyde"

9. Stéphane Audran

Actress | Le charme discret de la bourgeoisie

Stéphane Audran was born on November 8, 1932 in Versailles, Seine-et-Oise [now Yvelines], France as Colette Suzanne Dacheville. She is an actress, known for The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972), Babette's Feast (1987) and Le Boucher (1970). She was previously married to Claude Chabrol and ...

"Le charme discret de la bourgeoisie", "Le Boucher"

10. Brigitte Bardot

Actress | Et Dieu... créa la femme

Brigitte Bardot was born on September 28, 1934 in Paris, France. Her father had an engineering degree and worked with his father in the family business. Brigitte's mother encouraged her daughter to take up music and dance, and she proved to be very adept at it. By the time she was 15, Brigitte was ...

"Et Dieu créa la femme", "Mépris"

11. Tippi Hedren

Actress | The Birds

Tippi Hedren was born Nathalie Kay Hedren in New Ulm, Minnesota, to Dorothea Henrietta (Eckhardt) and Bernard Carl Hedren, who ran a general store. Her father was of Swedish descent and her mother was of German and Norwegian ancestry. Tippi was working as a New York fashion model when she married ...

"The Birds"

12. Sophia Loren

Actress | Arabesque

Sophia Loren was born as Sofia Scicolone at the Clinica Regina Margherita in Rome, Italy, on September 20, 1934. Her father, Riccardo Scicolone, was married to another woman and refused to marry her mother, Romilda Villani, despite the fact that she was the mother of his two children (Sophia and ...

"Ieri, Oggi, Domani", "Filumena Marturano"

13. Claudia Cardinale

Actress | C'era una volta il West

Like many other female Italian film stars, Claudia Cardinale's entry into the business was by way of a beauty pageant. She was 17 years old and studying at the Centro Sperimentale in Rome when she entered a beauty contest, which resulted in her getting a succession of small film roles. Her earthy ...

"Il Gatopardo"

14. Gina Lollobrigida

Actress | Notre-Dame de Paris

Gina Lollobrigida was born on July 4, 1927 in Subiaco, Italy. Destined to be called "The Most Beautiful Woman in the World", Gina possibly had St. Brigid as part of her surname. She was the daughter of a furniture manufacturer, and grew up in the pictorial mountain village. The young Gina did some ...

15. Anita Ekberg

Actress | Blood Alley

Kerstin Anita Marianne Ekberg was born on September 29, 1931 in Malmo, Sweden. Growing up with seven brothers and sisters was not an adventure, but Anita's adventure began when she was elected Miss Sweden in 1950. She did not win the Miss Universe contest but she got a modeling contract in the ...

"Dolce Vita"

16. Elke Sommer

Actress | The Prize

This gorgeous Teutonic temptress was one of Hollywood's most captivating imports of the 1960s. Blonde and beautiful, Berlin-born Elke Sommer, with her trademark pouty lips, high cheekbones and sky-high bouffant hairdos, proved irresistible to American audiences, whether adorned in lace or leather, ...

17. Ursula Andress

Actress | Dr. No

The quintessential jet-set Euro starlet, Ursula Andress was born in the Swiss canton of Berne on March 19, 1936, one of six children in a strict German Protestant family. Although often seeming icily aloof, a restless streak early demonstrated itself in her personality, and she had an impetuous ...

"Dr No"

18. Sissy Spacek

Actress | Coal Miner's Daughter

As a kid, Sissy Spacek climbed trees, rode horses, swam, and played in the woods. She was born Mary Elizabeth Spacek on December 25, 1949, in Quitman, Texas, to Virginia Frances (Spilman) and Edwin Arnold Spacek, Sr., a county agricultural agent. Her father's family was of Czech and German origin.

...

19. Olivia Newton-John

Soundtrack | Grease

Actress/singer Olivia Newton-John was born on September 26, 1948, in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England. She lived there until she was five years old, and her family relocated to Australia when her father was offered a job as the dean of a college in Melbourne. When she was a teen she returned to ...

"Greese", "Saturday Night Fever"

20. Kathleen Turner

Actress | Romancing the Stone

Kathleen Turner was born June 19, 1954 in Springfield, Missouri, to Patsy (Magee) and Allen Richard Turner, a U.S. Foreign Service officer. She graduated from American School in London in 1972. After the death of her father, the Turner family moved back to the United States where Kathleen later ...

"Mary-Sue gets married"

21. Fanny Ardant

Actress | 8 femmes

Fanny Ardent was the youngest of 5 children born to a cavalry officer and his wife. She was raised in Monte Carlo where she was educated at a convent school. A voracious reader, she discovered Proust at age 15 and felt as though his writings were for her.

When she was 17 her father died and the ...

"Femme d' a coé"

22. Catherine Deneuve

Actress | 8 femmes

Catherine Deneuve was born October 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 Le vice et la vertu (1963). But her breakthrough came with ...

"Belle de Jour", "La Chamade", "Sirene de Mississipi"

23. Lauren Hutton

Actress | American Gigolo

Following her success as a top fashion model for the Ford Modeling Agency and Revlon cosmetics, Hutton was selected to play the only major female character in Paper Lion (1968). After a semi-successful starring role in American Gigolo (1980), Hutton's modeling career took a slide in the 1980s, and ...

"American Gigolo"

24. Annette Bening

Actress | American Beauty

Annette Carol Bening was born on May 29, 1958 in Topeka, Kansas, the youngest of four children of Shirley (Ashley), a soloist and church singer, and Arnett Grant Bening, an insurance salesman. She is of German and British Isles ancestry. Her family moved to California when she was young, and she ...

25. 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 ...

26. Julie Christie

Actress | Doctor Zhivago

Julie Christie, the British movie legend whom Al Pacino called "the most poetic of all actresses", was born in Chukua, Assam, India, on April 14, 1941, the daughter of a tea planter, Frank St. John Christie, and his wife, Rosemary (Ramsden), who was a painter. Her family was of English, and some ...

"Darling", "Dr Jivago"

27. Sue Lyon

Actress | Lolita

Sue Lyon was born in Davenport, Iowa, the last of five children to Sue Karr Lyon. Her mother was forty-two when her husband died and Sue was 10 months old. Her mother had to work as a hospital house mother to take care of her children and money was tight. Around this time, the Lyon family moved out...

"Lolita"

28. Jane Fonda

Actress | Klute

Born in New York City to legendary screen star Henry Fonda and 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 prompted by ...

"Barbarella"

29. Shirley MacLaine

Actress | Terms of Endearment

Shirley MacLaine was born Shirley MacLean Beaty in Richmond, Virginia. Her mother, Kathlyn Corinne (MacLean), was a drama teacher from Nova Scotia, Canada, and her father, Ira Owens Beaty, a professor of psychology and real estate agent, was from Virginia. Her brother, Warren Beatty, was born on ...

30. Liv Ullmann

Actress | Ansikte mot ansikte

Liv Ullmann's father was a Norwegian engineer who used to work abroad, so as a child she lived in Tokyo, Canada, New York and Oslo. In the mid-'50s she made her stage debut and in 1957 made her film debut. She really became successful, however, when she began to work for Swedish director Ingmar ...

31. 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 ...

32. Charlotte Rampling

Actress | Swimming Pool

Tessa Charlotte Rampling was born 5 February 1946 in Sturmer, England, to Isabel Anne (Gurteen), a painter, and Godfrey Lionel Rampling, an Olympic gold medalist, army officer, and colonel, who became a NATO commander. She was educated at Jeanne d'Arc Académie pour Jeunes Filles in Versailles, ...

"Swimming Pool"

33. Bo Derek

Actress | Bolero

Bo Derek was born on November 20, 1956 in Long Beach, California, USA as Mary Cathleen Collins. She is an actress and producer, known for Bolero (1984), Ghosts Can't Do It (1989) and Tommy Boy (1995). She was previously married to John Derek.

"10"

34. 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 ...

35. Susannah York

Actress | Superman

The lovely Susannah York, a gamin, blue-eyed, cropped blonde British actress, displayed a certain crossover star quality when she dared upon the Hollywood scene in the early 1960s. A purposefully intriguing, enigmatic and noticeably uninhibited talent, she was born Susannah Yolande Fletcher on ...

"Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf"

36. Melina Mercouri

Actress | Pote tin Kyriaki

Melina Mercouri was born in Athens, Greece on October 18, 1920. An early woman activist, she was elected to the Greek Parliament in 1977. Later Miss Mercouri was to become the first woman to hold a Senior cabinet post "Minister of Culture" in the Greek government. In 1971 she wrote her ...

37. 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 Détective (1985) at the age of fourteen. She has starred in many American and European productions since then, including Disney's The Three Musketeers (...