My Favorite Actresses

by GuitarGeek920 | created - 01 Sep 2011 | updated - 02 Sep 2011 | Public

A short list of some of my favorite actresses from movies and television in no particular order. Annotated with various musings on why I like them.

1. Marion Cotillard

Actress | La môme

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.

Raised in Orléans, France, she made her ...

Everything I have seen her in has been Amazing! La Vie En Rose, Inception, Midnight in Paris... she is fantastic. Stunningly beautiful, and so talented and that accent...

2. Julianne Moore

Actress | The Hours

Julianne Moore was born Julie Anne Smith in Fort Bragg, North Carolina on December 3, 1960, the daughter of Anne (Love), a social worker, and Peter Moore Smith, a paratrooper, colonel, and later military judge. Her mother moved to the U.S. in 1951, from Greenock, Scotland. Her father, from ...

Pretty much amazing in everything she's in, she also only does good movies apparently. The Kids Are All Right was one of her best performances.

3. Shohreh Aghdashloo

Actress | House of Sand and Fog

Shohreh Aghdashloo was born Shohreh Vaziri-Tabar on May 11, 1952 in Tehran, Iran. In the 1970s at age 20, she achieved nationwide stardom in her homeland of Iran, starring in some prominent pictures such as Gozaresh (1977) directed by the renowned Abbas Kiarostami, which won critics awards at the ...

She brings beauty, grace, depth, and passion to everything she does. For American audiences a good starting point is the ER episode "Lost in America" she steals the show.

4. Yvonne Strahovski

Actress | Dexter

Yvonne Jaqueline Strzechowski was born and raised in Australia. Her parents were Polish immigrants. She attended the Santa Sabina College for her high school education. She then went on to study Performance at the University of Western Sydney's School of Contemporary Arts, graduating in 2003. ...

Drop dead sexy and freaking talented to boot. She has yet to be nominated for an Emmy for her work on Chuck, but I'm glad to see that she is in more things recently.

5. Ellen Page

Actress | Juno

Ellen Grace 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 ...

Hard Candy, Juno and An American Crime... In all of them she is incredible. Oh she's also good in Inception too.

6. 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...

A serious actress and seriously talented, I still need to see more of her stuff, but what I have seen is enough to convince me that she is awesome.

7. Rachel Weisz

Actress | The Constant Gardener

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. ...

The Fountain and The Constant Gardener are two of her best, she seems so fragile at times and so powerful at others.

8. Summer Glau

Actress | Serenity

Summer is a native of San Antonio, Texas. She's been a ballerina most of her life. Her debut was in various commercials and a guest appearance on the WB's Angel (1999). She has gone on to star on the TV series Firefly (2002) as well as its follow-up movie Serenity (2005) and the TV series ...

Firefly.

9. Karen Gillan

Actress | Selfie

Karen Sheila Gillan was born and raised in Inverness, Scotland, the daughter of Marie (Paterson) and John Gillan, who is a singer and recording artist. She developed a love for acting very early on, attending several youth theatre groups and taking part in a wide range of productions at her school,...

Hands down the best companion yet. She's a gorgeous red-head with freckles and a Scottish accent who also kicks ass on a nerdy sci-fi show... what more can you ask for?

10. Jessica Chastain

Actress | Zero Dark Thirty

Jessica Michelle Chastain was born in Sacramento, California, and was raised in a middle-class household in a northern California suburb. Her mother, Jerri Chastain, is a vegan chef whose family is originally from Kansas, and her stepfather is a fireman. She discovered dance at the age of nine and ...

She was the best part of Tree of Life, and I'm excited to see her in Take Shelter. She is beautiful, reserved and a talented actress.

11. Claudia Black

Actress | Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars

Claudia Lee Black was born and raised in Sydney, Australia. Her parents Jules and Judy Black are both Australian Medical Academics Doctors. She has lived in Australia, New Zealand, England and the US. Throughout her career Black has played in many Australian and New Zealand films and guested on ...

I fell in love with her in Farscape and came back for more in Stargate SG-1. Also she's probably the best part of Pitch Black.

12. Mila Kunis

Actress | Black Swan

Mila Kunis was born Milena Markovna Kunis 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. Her family moved to Los Angeles, California, ...

She was amazing in Black Swan, perfect in Forgetting Sarah Marshall and by far the best part of Friends With Benefits. Also she's super sexy!

13. Emma Watson

Actress | The Perks of Being a Wallflower

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,...

You know why... the 7th movie was a showcase for her formidable acting skills, and that tent dance!

14. Linda Cardellini

Actress | Brokeback Mountain

Linda Edna Cardellini was born in Redwood City, California, to Lorraine (Hernan) and Wayne David Cardellini, a businessman. She is of Italian (from her paternal grandfather), Irish (from her mother), German, English, and Scottish descent. Linda grew up in the San Francisco Bay area, California, the...

She was so good in Freaks and Geeks that I started watching ER at the episode she came in on... and she was really good there too. Has a goofy side, check out Gleeclipse.

15. Cate Blanchett

Actress | Carol

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 ...

She's played Gladriel, Queen Elizabeth, and Bob Dylan... need I say more?

16. 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 ...

She's Beautiful, can sing, was awesome in The Fighter and beautiful... did I say that twice?

17. Emily Mortimer

Actress | Lars and the Real Girl

English actress Emily Kathleen Anne Mortimer was born in Hammersmith, London, England, to writer and barrister Sir John Mortimer and his second wife, Penelope (née Gollop). She was educated at St Paul's Girls' School in West London, and it was whilst there she began acting. Mortimer moved on from ...

I've only seen her in Lars and the Real Girl and Match Point, as well as he voice acting in Howl's Moving Castle and Cars, but she is so adorable and amazing in Lars that I can't leave her off this list.

18. Jennifer Lawrence

Actress | The Hunger Games

Was the highest-paid actress in the world in 2015 and 2016. With her films grossing over $5.5 billion worldwide, Jennifer Lawrence is often cited as the most successful actor of her generation. She is also thus far the only person born in the 1990s to have won an acting Oscar.

Jennifer Shrader ...

Winter's Bone... I honestly would have been fine if she beat Natalie for the Oscar on that one. I'm also really excited for The Hunger Games.

19. Natalie Portman

Actress | Black Swan

Natalie Portman is the first person born in the 1980s to have won the Academy Award for Best Actress (for Black Swan (2010)).

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 ...

She's here because of Leon: The Professional, Garden State, and Black Swan, V for Vendetta, and Beautiful Girls. The rest is ok.

20. Sigourney Weaver

Actress | Avatar

Sigourney Weaver was born Susan Alexandra Weaver in Leroy Hospital in Manhattan, New York City. Her father, TV producer Sylvester L. Weaver Jr., originally wanted to name her Flavia, because of his passion for Roman history (he had already named her elder brother Trajan). Her mother, Elizabeth ...

I love Alien!

21. Sarah Lancaster

Actress | Chuck

Born in Overland Park, Kansas, Sarah moved to Mission Viejo, California, when she was 10 years old. In 1994, she secured her first role, as a series regular on Saved by the Bell: The New Class (1993). She then gained attention for her recurring role as "Madison Kellner" on the critically-acclaimed ...

She's gorgeous in that sweet, cute way. I've only seen her on Chuck, but everytime I see her on there I pretty much wish she was my older sister, she's like the best sister ever.

22. Keri Russell

Actress | Waitress

Keri Russell was born in Fountain Valley, California, to Stephanie (Stephens) and David Harold Russell, an executive at Nissan Motors. She began her career on the Mickey Mouse Club in 1991. She stayed with the show until 1993. After leaving The All New Mickey Mouse Club (1989) (where she, along ...

She's freaking adorable, and if you haven't seen the movie Waitress you need to right now.

23. Reese Witherspoon

Actress | Wild

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 ...

She was fantastic in Election and The Legally Blonde movies were ok. Also in Rendition she was perfect.

24. Leslie Mann

Actress | Knocked Up

Leslie Jean Mann was born in San Francisco, California. She was raised in Newport Beach, California by her mother, Janet Ann Ayres. At the age of 17 she launched her career, appearing in various TV commercials.

Her screen break came when she was cast as Nurse Mary in the short-lived Birdland (1994)....

Probably the funniest woman alive... I almost went to see The Change Up because she was in it... almost. When I found out she was married to Judd Apatow I got really jealous for a minute there, then realized how perfect that coupling is.

25. Rebecca Hall

Actress | Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Rebecca Hall was born in London, UK, the daughter of Peter Hall, a stage director and founder of the Royal Shakespeare Company, and Maria Ewing, an opera singer. Her father is English. Her mother, who is American, is of Dutch, Scottish, Sioux, and African American origin. Her parents separated when...

She was great in the Prestige, and I really liked her in Vicky Christine Barcelona, Red Riding:1974, and The Town.