great horror actresses

by psychocosmic-1 | created - 06 Feb 2013 | updated - 16 Feb 2013 | Public

This is a list of actresses which has shown a distinctive talent for Horror and Terror Films. At least three achieved genre titles are necessary to meet the demands of making it into this list. By "Greatest Film?" I mean to mention a strong achievement in a film within the genre. Further addition of actresses will probably be made... Great Pleasure!

1. Barbara Steele

Actress | La maschera del demonio

The most beautiful star of the greatest horror masterpiece of Italian film, Black Sunday (1960): Barbara Steele was born on December 29, 1937 in Birkenhead, Cheshire, England. Barbara is loved by her fans for her talent, intelligence, and a dark, mysterious beauty that is unique; her face ...

Greatest Films? BLACK SUNDAY 1960 and RAPTUS/ HORRIBLE SECRETS OF DR HITCHCOCK 1962, SHIVERS 1975 and PIRANHA 1978.

2. Asia Argento

Actress | Land of the Dead

Asia Argento was born in Rome, Italy, into a family of actors and filmmakers, both occupations which she has herself pursued. She made her debut when she was only nine years old in Sergio Citti's Sogni e bisogni (1985). In 1988 she had the leading role in Cristina Comencini's first film, Zoo (1988)...

Greatest Film? TRAUMA and THE STENDHAL SYNDROME 1996

3. Adrienne Barbeau

Actress | Escape from New York

Adrienne Jo Barbeau is an American actress and author best known for her roles on the TV series Maude (1972) and in horror films, especially those directed by John Carpenter, with whom she was once married. She was born on June 11, 1945 in Sacramento, California, the daughter of an executive for ...

Greatest Film? THE FOG 1979 and CREEPSHOW 1982

4. Karen Black

Actress | Five Easy Pieces

Karen Black was born Karen Blanche Ziegler in Park Ridge, Illinois, to Elsie Mary (Reif), who wrote children's books, and Norman Arthur Ziegler, an engineer and businessman. She was of Norwegian (from her paternal grandmother), German, and Bohemian (Czech) descent. Karen entered Northwestern ...

Greatest Film? TRILOGY OF TERROR TVM 1975 and BURNT OFFERINGS 1976

5. Hazel Court

Actress | The Curse of Frankenstein

Born in Birmingham, England, Hazel Court carried on a love affair with the world of movies and make-believe that made her a leading student at her hometown's School of Drama and later helped her land a contract with the J. Arthur Rank Organisation. Graduating from bits to supporting roles to leads,...

Greatest Films? PREMATURE BURIAL 1961 and MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH 1964

6. Adrienne Corri

Actress | A Clockwork Orange

Born and raised in Scotland, Adrienne Corri attended the Royal Academy of the Dramatic Arts in London as a teenager and then appeared on both the English and American stage. While still a teenager, she made her film debut in Naughty Arlette (1949). One of her most memorable film performances was in ...

Greatest Film? THE TELL-TALE HEART 1960 and VAMPIRE CIRCUS 1972

7. Joan Crawford

Actress | What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

Joan Crawford was born Lucille Fay LeSueur on March 23, 1905, 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; ...

Greatest Film? WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE? 1962 and NIGHT GALLERY 1969.

8. 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...

Greatest Film? HALLOWEEN 1978

9. 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...

Greatest Film? WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE? 1962

10. Faith Domergue

Actress | This Island Earth

Sultry, brunette Faith Domergue was born in New Orleans, part Creole, but primarily of Irish and English extraction. She was adopted when she was six weeks old. In 1927 her adoptive parents took her to live in California, where she was educated at Catholic schools in Santa Monica. She had her first...

Greatest Films? CULT OF THE COBRA 1955 and THIS ISLAND EARTH 1955

11. Linda Hayden

Actress | Taste the Blood of Dracula

Gorgeous and voluptuous blonde actress Linda Hayden made a strong and lasting impression with her steamy portrayals of lusty nymphets and tempting seductresses in a handful of pictures made in the 60s and 70s. Linda was born on January 19, 1953 in Stanmore, Middlesex, England. She studied her craft...

Greatest Film? TASTE THE BLOOD OF DRACULA and BLOOD ON SATAN´S CLAW 1970

12. Beverly Garland

Actress | It Conquered the World

Born in Santa Cruz, California, Beverly Garland studied dramatics under Anita Arliss, the sister of renowned stage and screen star George Arliss. She acted in little theater in Glendale then in Phoenix after her family relocated to Arizona. Garland also worked in radio and appeared scantily clad in...

Greatest Film? NOT OF THIS EARTH 1956

13. Karin Dor

Actress | You Only Live Twice

Born Kätherose Derr in Wiesbaden, Karin Dor studied acting and ballet at school and began in films as an extra. The attractive redhead made an indelible impression on Austrian director Harald Reinl (who became her first husband in 1954) and this paved the way to higher profile roles. Her first ...

Greatest Fìlm? TORTURE CHAMBER OF DR SADISM 1967

14. Elsa Lanchester

Actress | Witness for the Prosecution

Elsa Sullivan Lanchester was born into an unconventional a family at the turn of the 20th century. Her parents, James "Shamus" Sullivan and Edith "Biddy" Lanchester, were socialists - very active members of the Social Democratic Federation (SDF) in a rather broad sense and did not believe in the ...

Greatest Film? BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN 1935

15. Margot Kidder

Actress | Superman

Margot Kidder was born Margaret Ruth Kidder in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, to Jocelyn Mary "Jill" (Wilson), a history teacher from British Columbia, and Kendall Kidder, a New Mexico-born mining engineer and explosives expert. Margot was a delightful child who took pride in ...

Greatest Film? SISTERS 1972 and AMITYVILLE HORROR 1979

16. Viveca Lindfors

Actress | Stargate

Ms. Lindfors was a Swedish-born actress whose stage and screen career in the U.S. and Sweden spanned more than half a century. She was brought to Hollywood in 1946 by Warner Brothers in the hope that she would be a new Greta Garbo or Ingrid Bergman. She appeared with Ronald Reagan in her first ...

Greatest Film? THESE ARE THE DAMNED 1961 and A BELL FROM HELL 1973 and CREEPSHOW 1982

17. Helga Liné

Actress | Missione speciale Lady Chaplin

Gorgeously svelte and classy redhead stunner Helga Line was born as Helga Lina Stern on July 14th, 1932 in Berlin, Germany. Helga began her career as a dancer and acrobat in circus performances in Portugal. She also later worked as a model. Line began acting in movies in the early 40s. Helga moved ...

Greatest Film? HORROR EXPRESS and ORGY OF THE VAMPIRES 1973

18. Soledad Miranda

Actress | Vampyros Lesbos

Soledad Miranda was a Spanish actress who appeared in many films in the 1960s. Her remarkable beauty and her tragic untimely death make her story the stuff of legend. She was born on July 9, 1943 in Seville, Spain. She started her career when only eight years old as a flamenco dancer and singer. ...

Greatest Film? VAMPIROS LESBOS 1970

19. Caroline Munro

Actress | The Spy Who Loved Me

Leggy, brunette-maned pin-up actress Caroline Munro was born in Windsor and lived in Rottingdean near Brighton where she attended a Catholic Convent School. By chance, her mother and a photographer entered her picture in a "Face of the Year" competition for the British newspaper The Evening News ...

Greatest Films? DRACULA AD 1972 1972 and MANIAC 1980

20. Daria Nicolodi

Actress | Phenomena

Daria Nicolodi was born on June 19, 1950 in Florence, Tuscany, Italy. She is an actress and writer, known for Phenomena (1985), Deep Red (1975) and La proprietà non è più un furto (1973).

Greatest Films? DEEP RED 1975 and SHOCK 1977

21. Ingrid Pitt

Actress | The Wicker Man

Best known as Hammer Films' most seductive female vampire of the early 1970s, the Polish-born Pitt possessed dark, alluring features and a sexy figure that made her just right for Gothic horror! Ingrid Pitt (born Ingoushka Petrov) survived World War II and became a well-known actress on the East ...

Greatest Films? VAMPIRE LOVERS 1970 and COUNTESS DRACULA 1971

22. Barbara Rush

Actress | It Came from Outer Space

The epitome of poise, charm, style and grace, beautiful brunette Barbara Rush was born in Denver, Colorado in 1927 and enrolled at the University of California before working with the University Players and taking acting classes at the Pasadena Playhouse. It didn't take long for talent scouts to ...

Greatest Film? IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE 1953 and MOON OF THE WOLF TVM 1972

23. Dee Wallace

Actress | E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

This attractive, happy go lucky blonde actress, educated at the University of Kansas and a former ballet soloist, first broke into both TV and cinema screens in the mid 1970s and through her appearances in several well remembered horror and sci-fi films, and Dee quickly gained a cult following ...

Greatest Film? THE HOWLING 1980 and CUJO 1983

24. 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 ...

Greatest Films? ALIEN 1979 and ALIENS 1986

25. Naomi Watts

Actress | Mulholland Dr.

Naomi Ellen Watts was born on September 28, 1968 in Shoreham, England, to Myfanwy Edwards "Miv" (Roberts), an antiques dealer and costume/set designer, and Peter Watts (Peter Anthony Watts), the road manager to Pink Floyd. Her maternal grandfather was Welsh. Her father died when Naomi was seven and...

Greatest Film? MULHOLLAND DR 2001 and KING KONG 2005.

26. Shelley Winters

Actress | The Poseidon Adventure

Shelley Winters was born Shirley Schrift of very humble beginnings on August 18, 1920 (some sources list 1922) in East St. Louis, Illinois. Her mother, Rose (Winter), was born in Missouri, to Austrian Jewish parents, and her father, Jonas Schrift, was an Austrian Jewish immigrant. Her father moved ...

Greatest Film? WHOEVER SLEW AUNTIE ROO? and THE TENANT 1976

27. Fay Wray

Actress | King Kong

Canadian-born Fay Wray was brought up in Los Angeles and entered films at an early age. She was barely in her teens when she started working as an extra. She began her career as a heroine in westerns at Universal during the silent era. In 1926 the Western Association of Motion Picture Advertisers ...

Greatest Films? THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME 1932 and KING KONG 1933

28. Joan Collins

Actress | Dynasty

Joan Collins was born on May 23, 1933 in Paddington, London, England as Joan Henrietta Collins. She is an actress and producer, known for Dynasty (1981), Empire of the Ants (1977) and Land of the Pharaohs (1955). She has been married to Percy Gibson since February 17, 2002. She was previously ...

Greatest Film? TALES FROM THE CRYPT 1972 and EMPIRE OF THE ANTS 1977.

29. Milla Jovovich

Actress | Le cinquième élément

Milla Jovovich is an Ukrainian-born actress, supermodel, fashion designer, singer and public figure, who was on the cover of more than a hundred magazines, and starred in such films as The Fifth Element (1997), Ultraviolet (2006), and the Resident Evil (2002) franchise.

Milica Bogdanovna Jovovich ...

Greatest Film? RESIDENT EVIL 2002 and ULTRAVIOLET 2006

30. Evelyn Ankers

Actress | The Ghost of Frankenstein

Evelyn Ankers, a beautiful movie actress who was a staple of Universal's horror films in the 1940s, was born in Chile to English parents in 1918. Her parents repatriated the family back to England in the 1920s, and it was in Old Blighty that Ankers developed a desire to become an actress.

She began ...

Greatest Film? THE WOLFMAN 1941 and THE GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN 1942

31. Britt Ekland

Actress | The Man with the Golden Gun

Britt Ekland was born in Sweden and grew up to be the poster girl for beautiful, big-eyed Scandinavian blondes. She attended a drama school and then joined a traveling theater group. With her looks as her passport, Britt entered films and became a star in Italy. When Peter Sellers met her in a ...

Greatest Film? ASYLUM 1972 and THE WICKER MAN 1973

32. Brigitte Helm

Actress | Metropolis

After her role in Metropolis (1927) she made a string of movies in which she almost always had the starring role, easily making the transition to sound films. Her last film was Ein idealer Gatte (1935) (An Ideal Spouse) in 1935.

Greatest Film? METROPOLIS 1926 and ALRAUNE 1928.

33. Veronica Cartwright

Actress | Alien

Born in Bristol, England, Veronica is the older sister of the popular child actress Angela Cartwright. In her early career, Veronica was cast in a number of popular movies such as The Children's Hour (1961), Spencer's Mountain (1963) and Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds (1963). As such, she was cast as...

Greatest Film? INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS 1978 and ALIEN 1979

34. Brooke Adams

Actress | Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Brooke Adams was born on February 8, 1949 in New York City, to Rosalind (Gould), an actress, and Robert K. Adams, a former CBS vice president. She is of English and German descent, and is said to be related to President John Adams. She was educated at the prestigious High School for the Performing ...

Greatest Film? INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS 1978 and DEAD ZONE 1883.

35. Barbara Shelley

Actress | Quatermass and the Pit

The sexy Barbara Shelley was born Barbara Kowin on February, 13, 1932 in London, England. With her beautiful looks and stature, she worked as a model during her salad days. Her film career began in Italy in the mid-1950s in such tempting fare as Luna nova (1955) and Nero's Mistress (1956), but when...

Greatest Films? CAT GIRL 1957 and VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED 1960 and DRACULA-PRINCE OF DARKNESS 1965

36. Martine Beswick

Actress | Thunderball

Born to British parents in Port Antonio, Jamaica, Martine Beswick did some brief modeling and pageant entering before seeking a career in films. She allegedly once won a "Miss Autoville" contest and won a car only to sell it in order to move to and study acting in London. A minor break for her ...

Greatest Films? DR JEKYLL AND SISTER HYDE 1971 and SEIZURE 1974.

37. Susan Strasberg

Actress | Picnic

Susan Strasberg was born in New York City on May 22, 1938. From the time of her birth, she was destined to be an actress, as her father was Lee Strasberg, acting coach at the famed Actors Studio in New York. In 1953, Susan made her acting debut in the episode Goodyear Playhouse: Catch a Falling Star...

Greatest Film? SCREAM OF FEAR 61 and MANITOU 78.

38. Lynda Day George

Actress | Mission: Impossible

An American television actress, Lynda Day George first drew attention when she appeared in the popular TV series Mission: Impossible (1966) as Lisa Casey, a role for which she received a Golden Globe nomination. She also did numerous guest-star roles in such series as The Love Boat (1977) and ...

Greatest Film? Fear No Evil TVM 1969