Favorite Actresses

My favorite actresses in film and television in no particular order....
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1.
Evan Rachel Wood
Actress, The Wrestler
Evan Rachel Wood was born September 7, 1987, in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her father, Ira David Wood III, is a theatre actor, writer and director, and her mother, Sara Wood, is an actress and acting coach. She has two older brothers--Dana Wood, a musician, and Ira David Wood IV, who has also acted...
 
2.
Amanda Seyfried
Actress, Mamma Mia!
Amanda Seyfried was born and raised in Allentown, Pennsylvania, to Ann (Sander), an occupational therapist, and Jack Seyfried, a pharmacist. She is of German, and some English and Scottish, ancestry. She began modeling when she was eleven, and acted in high school productions as well as taking singing lessons...
 
3.
Jennifer Lawrence
America's Sweetheart and star of the wildly popular Hunger Games series, Jennifer Lawrence is the first, and thus far only, person born in the 1990s to have received an acting Oscar (for Silver Linings Playbook). Lawrence was born Jennifer Shrader Lawrence on August 15, 1990 in Louisville, Kentucky, to Karen (Koch)...
 
4.
Kate Mara
Actress, 127 Hours
Kate Mara is an American actress. She starred in the Netflix political drama, House of Cards, as "Zoe Barnes" and appeared in the Fox TV series, 24 as computer analyst "Shari Rothenberg". She appeared in Brokeback Mountain, We Are Marshall, Shooter, Transsiberian, Stone of Destiny...
 
5.
Emma Stone
Actress, The Help
Emily Jean "Emma" Stone was born in Scottsdale, Arizona, to Krista (Yeager), a homemaker, and Jeffrey Charles Stone, a contracting company founder and CEO. She is of Swedish (from her paternal grandfather), English, German, Scottish, and Irish descent. Stone began acting as a child as a member of the Valley Youth Theatre in Phoenix...
 
6.
Mila Kunis
Actress, Black Swan
The talented Milena "Mila" Markovna Kunis was born to a Jewish family in Chernivtsi, Ukraine, USSR (now independent Ukraine). Her mother, Elvira, is a physics teacher, her father, Mark Kunis, is a mechanical engineer, and she has an older brother named Michael. After attending one semester of college between gigs...
 
7.
Amy Adams
Actress, Arrival
Amy Lou Adams was born in Vicenza, Veneto, Italy, to American parents, Kathryn (Hicken) and Richard Kent Adams, a U.S. serviceman who was stationed at Caserma Ederle in Italy at the time. She was raised in a Mormon family of seven children in Castle Rock, Colorado, and has English, as well as smaller amounts of Danish, Swiss-German, and Norwegian, ancestry...
 
8.
Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Ingrid Johansson was born in New York City. Her mother, Melanie Sloan, is from a Jewish family from the Bronx, and her father, Karsten Johansson, is a Danish-born architect, from Copenhagen. She has a sister, Vanessa Johansson, who is also an actress, a brother, Adrian, a twin brother, Hunter Johansson...
 
9.
Anne Hathaway
Anne Jacqueline Hathaway was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Kate McCauley Hathaway, an actress, and Gerald T. Hathaway, a lawyer, both originally from Philadelphia. She is of mostly Irish descent, along with English, German, and French. Her first major role came in the short-lived television series Get Real...
 
10.
Natalie Portman
Natalie Portman is the first person born in the 1980s to have won the Academy Award for Best Actress (for Black Swan). Natalie was born Natalie Hershlag on June 9, 1981, in Jerusalem, Israel. She is the only child of Avner Hershlag, an Israeli-born doctor, and Shelley Stevens, an American-born artist (from Cincinnati...
 
11.
Gemma Arterton
Gemma Christina Arterton was born in Gravesend, Kent, England, where she was raised. She is the daughter of Sally-Anne (Heap), a cleaner, and Barry J. Arterton, a welder. Her mother's cousin is singer-songwriter Eric Goulden. Her parents divorced when she was age five, and Gemma subsequently lived with her younger sister and her mother...
 
12.
Olivia Wilde
Actress, Rush
Actress and activist Olivia Wilde is a modern-day renaissance woman. Starring in films and popular television shows, Wilde shares the screen with renowned actors while simultaneously giving back to the community. Olivia Wilde was born Olivia Jane Cockburn in New York City, to journalists Leslie Cockburn (née Leslie Corkill Redlich) and Andrew Cockburn...
 
13.
Vera Farmiga
Actress, The Conjuring
Vera Farmiga is an American actress who received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Up in the Air and a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her role in Bates Motel. She was born Vera Ann Farmiga, the second of seven children...
 
14.
Jamie-Lynn Sigler
Actress, The Sopranos
Jamie-Lynn Sigler has been acting and singing since the age of 7. She got her start in New York regional theater, and has since starred in over two dozen theatrical productions including "Annie," "The Wizard of Oz," "The Sound of Music," "The Wiz," and "Gypsy." In the summer of 2001, she starred in...
 
15.
Ellen Page
Actress, Inception
Ellen Philpotts-Page was born on February 21, 1987, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, to Martha Philpotts, a teacher, and Dennis Page, a graphic designer. Page wanted to start acting at an early age and attended the Neptune Theater School. She began her career at the age of 10 on the award-winning television series Pit Pony...
 
16.
Reese Witherspoon
Actress, Walk the Line
Laura Jeanne Reese Witherspoon was born on March 22, 1976 at Southern Baptist Hospital (now Memorial Medical Center) in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is the second child of Mary Elizabeth "Betty" (Reese) and Dr. John Draper Witherspoon, Sr. Her father was a military surgeon specializing in ear, nose and throat...
 
17.
Eva Green
Actress, Casino Royale
French actress and model Eva Gaëlle Green was born on July 6, 1980, in Paris, France. Her father, Walter Green, is a dentist who appeared in the 1966 film Au Hasard Balthazar. Her mother, Marlène Jobert, is an actress turned children's book writer. Eva's mother was born in Algeria, of Sephardi Jewish heritage (during that time...
 
18.
Rooney Mara
Actress and philanthropist Rooney Mara was born on April 17, 1985 in Bedford, New York. She made her screen debut in the slasher film Urban Legends: Bloody Mary, went on to have a supporting role in the independent coming-of-age drama Tanner Hall, and has since starred in the horror remake A Nightmare on Elm Street...
 
19.
Jessica Stroup
Actress, 90210
Jessica Stroup was born October 23rd 1986, in Anderson, South Carolina, USA. At the age of 17, she received a scholarship to attend the University of Georgia, but turned it down to pursue acting. At only 17, she moved to Los Angeles and immediately took acting classes and received both modeling and acting offers...
 
20.
Diane Kruger
Diane Kruger was born Diane Heidkrüger in Algermissen, near Hildesheim, Germany, to Maria-Theresa, a bank employee, and Hans-Heinrich Heidkrüger, a computer specialist. She studied ballet with the Royal Ballet in London before an injury ended her career. She returned to Germany and became a top fashion model...
 
21.
Michelle Trachtenberg
Trachtenberg grew up in Brooklyn and started her acting career young; she began appearing in commercials at the age of 3. She continued to act and dance through her school years, making regular television appearances from the age of 10. She landed a recurring role in the kids' TV show The Adventures of Pete & Pete and starred in Harriet the Spy...
 
22.
Kate Winslet
Actress, Titanic
Ask Kate Winslet what she likes about any of her characters, and the word "ballsy" is bound to pop up at least once. The British actress has made a point of eschewing straightforward pretty-girl parts in favor of more devilish damsels; as a result, she's built an eclectic resume that runs the gamut from Shakespearean tragedy to modern-day mysticism and erotica...
 
23.
Marisa Tomei
Actress, The Wrestler
Marisa Tomei was born on December 4, 1964, in Brooklyn, New York to mother Patricia "Addie" Tomei, an English teacher and father Gary Tomei, a lawyer. Marisa also has a brother, actor Adam Tomei. As a child, Marisa's mother frequently corrected her speech as to eliminate her heavy Brooklyn accent...
 
24.
Jennifer Connelly
Jennifer Connelly was born in the Catskill Mountains, New York, to Ilene (Schuman), a dealer of antiques, and Gerard Connelly, a clothing manufacturer. Her father had Irish and Norwegian ancestry, and her mother was from a Jewish immigrant family. Jennifer grew up in Brooklyn Heights, just across the Brooklyn Bridge from Manhattan...
 
25.
Mary Elizabeth Winstead
Mary Elizabeth Winstead is a gifted actress, known for her versatile work in a variety of film and television projects. Possibly most known for her role as Ramona Flowers in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, she has also starred in critically acclaimed independent films such as Smashed, for which she received an Independent Spirit Award nomination...
 
26.
Helen Mirren
Actress, The Queen
Dame Helen Mirren was born in Queen Charlotte's Hospital in West London. Her mother, Kathleen Alexandrina Eva Matilda (Rogers), was from a working-class English family, and her father, Vasiliy Petrovich Mironov, was a Russian-born civil servant, from Kuryanovo, whose own father was a diplomat. Mirren attended St...
 
27.
Keira Knightley
Keira Christina Knightley was born in the South West Greater London suburb of Richmond on March 26th 1985. She is the daughter of actor Will Knightley and actress turned playwright Sharman Macdonald. An older brother, Caleb Knightley, was born in 1979. Her father is English, while her Scottish-born mother is of Scottish and Welsh origin...
 
28.
Meryl Streep
Considered by many critics to be the greatest living actress, Meryl Streep has been nominated for the Academy Award an astonishing 20 times, and has won it three times. Meryl was born Mary Louise Streep in 1949 in Summit, New Jersey, to Mary Wolf (Wilkinson), a commercial artist, and Harry William Streep...
 
29.
Emmy Rossum
Actress, Shameless
It would seem that 2004, the year of her 18th birthday, will be remembered as pivotal for Emmy Rossum due to her appearance in two very different films, The Day After Tomorrow and The Phantom of the Opera. Emmy's performance in the latter film gained her a Golden Globe nomination. Emmanuelle Grey Rossum was born in New York City...
 
30.
Emma Watson
Emma Charlotte Duerre Watson was born in Paris, France, to English parents, Jacqueline Luesby and Chris Watson, both lawyers. She moved to Oxfordshire when she was five, where she attended the Dragon School. From the age of six, Emma knew that she wanted to be an actress and, for a number of years, she trained at the Oxford branch of Stagecoach Theatre Arts...
 
31.
Juno Temple
Juno was born in England into a showbiz family. Her mother is a producer, Amanda Temple, and her father is the film director, Julien Temple. She was named 'Juno' after her parents took a visit to the Grand Canyon, during pregnancy, and found they were standing on a butte of Cape Final known as Juno Temple. She has English and Scottish ancestry...
 
32.
Blake Lively
Actress, Gossip Girl
Blake Lively was born Blake Ellender Brown in Tarzana, California, to a show business family. Her mother, Elaine Lively (née McAlpin), is an acting coach and talent manager, and her father, Ernie Lively (born Ernest Wilson Brown, Jr.), is an actor and teacher. Her brother is actor Eric Lively...
 
33.
Emily Browning
Actress, Sucker Punch
Australian actress Emily Browning was born in 1988 in Melbourne, Australia, to Shelley and Andrew Browning. She has two younger brothers. Her start in acting came after a classmate's father, involved in the acting business, noticed her "acting all ditsy" in a school play. Emily found an agent and was soon filming on location for the Hallmark TV-movie...
 
34.
Emily Blunt
Actress, Sicario
Emily Olivia Leah Blunt is a British actress known for her roles in The Devil Wears Prada, The Young Victoria, Edge of Tomorrow, and The Girl on the Train, among many others. Blunt was born on February 23, 1983, in Roehampton, South West London, England, the second of four children in the family of Joanna Mackie...
 
35.
Jessica Alba
Actress, Sin City
Jessica Marie Alba was born on April 28, 1981, in Pomona, CA, to Catherine (Jensen) and Mark David Alba, who served in the US Air Force. Her mother has Danish, Welsh, German, English, and French ancestry, while her father is of Mexican descent (including Spanish, Indigenous Mexican, and distant Sephardic Jewish...
 
36.
Jamie Chung
Actress, Big Hero 6
Jamie Chung was born and raised in California, the daughter of Korean parents. She studied Economics at the University of California, Riverside. Chung's break came in 2004, when she was working in a sports bar. MTV held auditions for Real World there, she tried out, and was successful, appearing in the San Diego based fourteenth season...
 
37.
Anna Paquin
Actress, The Piano
Anna Paquin is the first millennial to have received an Academy Award nomination for acting, and the first to win. She was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, in 1982, to Mary (Brophy), an English teacher from Wellington, New Zealand, and Brian Paquin, a Canadian phys-ed teacher. Anna moved to her mother's native country when she was four years old...
 
38.
Nikki Reed
Actress, Thirteen
Actress and screenwriter Nicole Houston Reed was born in Los Angeles, California. She is the daughter of Cheryl Houston, a hairdresser and beautician, and Seth Reed, a set designer. She has two brothers. Her ancestry includes Ashkenazi Jewish, German, British Isles, and one eighth Italian. Reed's parents divorced when she was two and she lived with her mother...
 
39.
Amber Tamblyn
Actress, 127 Hours
Amber Rose Tamblyn was born May 14, 1983 in Santa Monica, California. Amber caught an agent's eye at the age of ten after a performance in "Pippi Longstocking". She has appeared in Live Nude Girls and Johnny Mysto: Boy Wizard. In addition, her most popular role has been the role of "Emily Bowen-Quartermaine" of the popular soap General Hospital...
 
40.
Ashley Greene
Ashley Michele Greene was born in Jacksonville, Florida to parents Michele (Tatum), an insurance broker, and Joseph Lacy Greene, US Marine who runs a concrete business. A self-confessed tomboy and "daredevil", Ashley loved to try to keep up with her older brother Joe, taking on activities such as taekwondo and winning several awards...
 
41.
Kristen Stewart
Actress, Twilight
Though most famous for her role as Isabella "Bella" Swan in The Twilight Saga, Kristen Stewart has been a working actor since her early years in Los Angeles, California, where she was born. Her parents, John Stewart and Jules Stewart, both work in film and television. Her mother is Australian...
 
42.
Elle Fanning
Actress, Maleficent
Mary Elle Fanning was born on the 9th of April 1998 in Conyers, Georgia, USA, to Heather Joy (Arrington) and Steven J. Fanning. Her mother played professional tennis, and her father, now an electronics salesman, played minor league baseball. She is of German, Irish, English, French, and Channel Islander descent...
 
43.
Rashida Jones
Rashida Jones was born in Los Angeles, the younger daughter of media mogul, producer, and musician Quincy Jones and actress Peggy Lipton. She has an older sister, Kidada Jones, and five half-siblings by her father's other relationships. Her father is African-American, and also has Welsh ancestry...
 
44.
Leighton Meester
Actress, Gossip Girl
Leighton Marissa Meester was born in Fort Worth, Texas, to Constance (Haas) and Douglas Meester. Although born in Texas when her mother was serving a jail sentence for her part in a marijuana-smuggling ring, Meester spent her early years in Marco Island, Florida with her grandparents. There, she became involved with the local playhouse and made her stage debut in a production of "The Wizard of Oz"...
 
45.
Emma Roberts
Emma Roberts is the daughter of Oscar-nominated actor Eric Roberts, and the niece of Oscar-winner Julia Roberts. She was born in Rhinebeck, New York. Emma was a baby when her parents separated, and she grew up living with her mother, Kelly Cunningham. She was educated at Archer School for Girls in Los Angeles, California...
 
46.
Sarah Michelle Gellar
Emmy Award-winning Sarah Michelle Gellar was born on April 14, 1977 in New York City, the daughter of Rosellen (Greenfield), who taught at a nursery school, and Arthur Gellar, who worked in the garment industry. Her maternal grandparents were Hungarian Jewish immigrants, and her father was also from a Jewish family...
 
47.
Marion Cotillard
Academy Award-winning Actress Marion Cotillard was born on September 30, 1975 in Paris. Cotillard is the daughter of Jean-Claude Cotillard, an actor, playwright and director, and Niseema Theillaud, an actress and drama teacher. Her father's family is Breton and her mother has Kabyle ancestry. Raised in Orléans...
 
48.
Rachel Weisz
Actress, The Mummy
Rachel Hannah Weisz was born on 7 March, 1970, in London, U.K., to Edith Ruth (Teich), a psychoanalyst, and George Weisz, an inventor. Her parents both came to England around 1938. Her father is a Hungarian Jewish immigrant, and her mother, from Vienna, is of Italian and Austrian Jewish heritage. Rachel has a sister, Minnie, a curator and photographer...
 
49.
Cate Blanchett
Cate Blanchett was born on May 14, 1969 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, to June (Gamble), an Australian teacher and property developer, and Robert DeWitt Blanchett, Jr., an American advertising executive, originally from Texas. She has an older brother and a younger sister. When she was ten years old...
 
50.
Carey Mulligan
Actress, Drive
Carey Mulligan is a British actress, born May 28, 1985, in Westminster, London, England, to Nano (Booth), a university lecturer, and Stephen Mulligan, a hotel manager. Her father is of Irish descent and her mother is Welsh, originally from Llandeilo. Her first major appearance was playing Kitty Bennet in Pride & Prejudice alongside Keira Knightley...
 
51.
Kirsten Dunst
Actress, Spider-Man
Kirsten Caroline Dunst is an American actress, who also holds German citizenship. She was born on April 30, 1982 in Point Pleasant, New Jersey, to parents Inez (née Rupprecht), who owned an art gallery, and Klaus Dunst, a medical services executive. She has a younger brother named Christian Dunst, born in 1987...
 
52.
Eliza Dushku
Actress, True Lies
Eliza Dushku was born in Boston, Massachusetts, to Judith (Rasmussen), a political science professor, and Philip R. Dushku, a teacher and administrator. Her father is Albanian and her mother is American (of Danish, Irish, English, and German descent). She was discovered at the end of a five-month search...
 
53.
Elizabeth Banks
Elizabeth Banks was born Elizabeth Mitchell in Pittsfield, a small city in the Berkshires in western Massachusetts near the New York border, on February 10, 1974. She is the daughter of Ann (Wallace), who worked in a bank, and Mark P. Mitchell, a factory worker. Elizabeth describes herself as having been seen as a "goody two-shoes" in her youth who was nominated for the local Harvest Queen...
 
54.
Dianna Agron
Actress, Glee
Dianna Elise Agron was born in Savannah, Georgia, to parents Ronald and Mary Agron. She grew up in a middle class family, in Savannah, before moving to Texas, and later, San Francisco, California, due to her father's career as a general manager for Hyatt. Dianna and her brother, Jason, were raised Jewish, and she graduated from Burlingame High School with honors...