Special Report

50 Most Famous Actresses

In modern cinema, actresses take on diverse roles: Earth’s savior, a super heroine, a resistance fighter, a protector of people’s rights, a humanoid robot, a tomb raider, a mother determined to find her daughter’s killer.

These actresses enjoy the challenges of difficult roles, sometimes involving physically demanding work. They are no longer damsels in distress.

The women on this list of the 50 most famous actresses demonstrate the strength of the female protagonist. Some of these actresses have had long staying power, like Meryl Streep (“Kramer vs. Kramer,” “The Post” and Sigourney Weaver (“Alien,” “Hannah and Her Sisters”). Others are fresh faces, such as Chloë Grace Moretz (“Let Me In,” “The 5th Wave.”)

Absent from the list are many beloved actresses of the past, such as Audrey Hepburn, Bette Davis, and Elizabeth Taylor. Our list focuses on the actresses who are most admired right now. Therefore, the majority are still working.

What’s certain is that these actresses draw movie-goers in and connect with audiences in a special and unique way.

Click here to read about the 50 most famous actresses.
Click here to read our methodology.