Special Report

Most Memorable Movie Villains

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Dracula
> Movie: “Dracula” (1931)
> Played by: Bela Lugosi

Lugosi first portrayed Dracula on Broadway before tackling the role in a big screen adaptation. It helped launch his subsequent career as a monster movie icon from the 1930s through to the 1950s.

Source: Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Miss Gulch/ The Wicked Witch of the West
> Movie: “The Wizard of Oz” (1939)
> Played by: Margaret Hamilton

A wealthy landowner, Miss Gulch threatens to have Toto put to sleep during early scenes of this classic film. She’s reimagined by Dorothy as the Wicked Witch of the West, who terrorizes Oz with her army of flying monkeys. Actress Margaret Hamilton plays both characters.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

Mrs. Danvers
> Movie: “Rebecca” (1940)
> Played by: Judith Anderson

Judith Anderson received an Oscar nomination for her performance as Mrs. Danvers, the primary antagonist of Hitchcock’s romantic thriller. Devoted to her former mistress, Danvers psychologically torments the estate owner’s new wife.

Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

Phyllis Dietrichson
> Movie: “Double Indemnity” (1944)
> Played by: Barbara Stanwyck

Stanwyck’s Oscar-nominated turn as Phyllis Dietrichson set a benchmark for femme fatale performances in film noir. The effortlessly cunning character seduces an insurance agent (Fred MacMurray) into a scheme involving fraud and murder.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Veda Pierce
> Movie: “Mildred Pierce” (1945)
> Played by: Ann Blyth

As the foil to her mother’s hard-working ambitions, Veda Pierce takes the concept of a spoiled child to murderous extremes. Played by Ann Blyth in this 1945 film adaptation, the character was later portrayed by Evan Rachel Wood in a 2011 mini-series. Both versions were based on noir specialist James M. Cain’s novel of the same name.

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