It’s true this image isn’t in English but it saved me a lot of work and basically perfectly covers the Century of Film.  I found it here to give credit where credit is due.

A Century of Film

The 100 Greatest Actresses


Two posts ago, I mentioned that I was not going to do any lists for my Absolute Points list and that it would be obvious why in two posts time.  In the previous post, my 100 Favorite Actresses, I mentioned that most of the actresses would not get a full description and that it would be obvious why in the next post.  This is that post (for both).

When calculating my Top 100 Directors, I did a lot of different lists that factored in the quality of their films, the quality of their direction, critical acclaim and awards attention.  It wasn’t going to be that easy with acting.  So I bit the bullet and decided that my ranking would be based on my Absolute Points list.

Here’s how that works.  I rate a performance on a scale of 0-9.  The vast, vast majority of film performances are a 0, not worthy of noting.  To me, a solid performance worthy of an Oscar nomination is a 4 (equivalent to a low star **** film for Picture), which earns 35 points, which is the point total for an Oscar or Nighthawk nomination.  A great performance, worthy of an Oscar, is an 8 (equivalent to a high **** film), which earns 70 points, the total for an Oscar or Nighthawk win.  The very best performances earn a 9, which earns a 78 (the equivalent of a 98 or 99 for Best Picture).  The numbers for supporting are 4=30, 8=60, 9=67 with appropriate scaling going down (1=9 in lead, 8 in supporting).

I simply have totaled all of those performances.  It eliminates the luck of what year the performance was in.  So, for instance, in 1993, when both Emma Thompson and Holly Hunter earn a 9 for their performances, they both get 78 points.  In 1986, Maggie Smith and Dianne Wiest both get 67 points.  They aren’t hurt by the chance of having brilliant competition.  Likewise, in 1985, when no lead performance earns above a 7 or the same for supporting in 1992, the highest point totals are 61 and 52.  They don’t get extra points just for winning in a weaker year.

It is true that the points are cumulative, so the more good performances you do, the more you earn.  But that’s part of a whole career.  Actresses who left acting early like Janet Gaynor, Norma Shearer, Jean Arthur or Greta Garbo deserve (at least a little) to be capped by the lengths of their career.  But in the end, greatness matters.  You have to give nine 1 point performances to match a nine point performance.  The more often you are great, the higher you go.  That’s why (and this should not be a surprise even if you didn’t look at the picture at the top of the post), Meryl Streep dominates.  She doesn’t just give lots of performances but they are so often great performances.

I will also point out that this list is entirely configured based off films.  So Helen Mirren doesn’t get points for Prime Suspect and I don’t count Angels in America or Empire Falls or any television show or film (even though I mentioned some in the Favorite list).  Also please note that my paragraph description of the career doesn’t necessarily even include everything I gave the actress points for – it’s just a summation, not a complete list.

I start below with an oddity list, then do decade lists, then two different lists that stress peak performance.  That will be followed by the full list, with some post-2011 updates at the bottom.  In the full list, though I list awards from major groups (wins are in bold – if there is no line in bold they didn’t win any of the awards I track) though I will stress that those awards are just a list – they have nothing to do with the actual construction of the list.  My own awards are abbreviated NH to save space.

Top 10 Oddest Performances in History:

note:  Here is what I mean by this list: these are the highest career point totals on the list (of the 872 actresses on the list through 2011) whose entire point total is from just one film.  For Mary Tyler Moore that’s understandable (mostly television) while I just might not have seen enough films for Roth, Dahlbeck and Sylwan.  For the other six though, it’s just that one performance is so dominant and nothing else in their career is that good with Shue’s performance, to me, being the most glaring oddity.

  1. Mary Tyler Moore  –  Ordinary People
  2. Cecilia Roth  –  All About My Mother
  3. Elizabeth Shue  –  Leaving Las Vegas
  4. Marlee Matlin  –  Children of a Lesser God
  5. Patricia Neal  –  Hud
  6. Eva Dahlbeck  –  Smiles of a Summer Night
  7. Lorraine Bracco  –  GoodFellas
  8. Kari Sylwan  –  Cries and Whispers
  9. Judith Anderson  –  Rebecca
  10. Mo’Nique  –  Precious

Top 10 Points:  1912-1929

  1. Lilian Gish  –  253
  2. Janet Gaynor  –  166
  3. Gloria Swanson  –  121
  4. Brigitte Helm  –  112
  5. Mary Pickford  –  77
  6. Maria Falconetti  –  61
  7. Olga Baclanova  –  59
  8. Greta Garbo  –  52
  9. Louise Brooks  –  50
  10. Hilda Borgstrom  –  44

Top 10 Points:  1930-1939

  1. Bette Davis  –  315
  2. Katharine Hepburn  –  265
  3. Norma Shearer  –  244
  4. Greta Garbo  –  208
  5. Janet Gaynor  –  131
  6. Marlene Dietrich  –  131
  7. Marie Dressler  –  117
  8. Ginger Rogers  –  112
  9. Billie Burke  –  105
  10. Miriam Hopkins  –  97

Top 10 Points:  1940-1949

  1. Ingrid Bergman  –  399
  2. Bette Davis  –  297
  3. Olivia de Havilland  –  245
  4. Teresa Wright  –  242
  5. Barbara Stanwyck  –  236
  6. Deborah Kerr  –  200
  7. Greer Garson  –  173
  8. Joan Fontaine  –  157
  9. Katharine Hepburn  –  149
  10. Rosalind Russell  –  148

Top 10 Points:  1950-1959

  1. Deborah Kerr  –  279
  2. Audrey Hepburn  –  262
  3. Simone Signoret  –  246
  4. Anna Magnani  –  244
  5. Katharine Hepburn  –  236
  6. Gloria Grahame  –  213
  7. Grace Kelly  –  202
  8. Harriet Andersson  –  172
  9. Eleanor Parker  –  159
  10. Thelma Ritter  –  137

Top 10 Points:  1960-1969

  1. Audrey Hepburn  –  286
  2. Anne Bancroft  –  236
  3. Natalie Wood  –  234
  4. Shirley MacLaine  –  208
  5. Katharine Hepburn  –  192
  6. Julie Andrews  –  174
  7. Deborah Kerr  –  167
  8. Edith Evans  –  158
  9. Liv Ullmann  –  158
  10. Catherine Deneuve  –  157

Top 10 Points:  1970-1979

  1. Liv Ullmann  –  383
  2. Glenda Jackson  –  306
  3. Jane Fonda  –  278
  4. Diane Keaton  –  245
  5. Ellen Burstyn  –  226
  6. Meryl Streep  –  208
  7. Julie Christie  –  174
  8. Faye Dunaway  –  170
  9. Sissy Spacek  –  150
  10. Maggie Smith  –  126

Top 10 Points:  1980-1989

  1. Meryl Streep  –  444
  2. Jessica Lange  –  287
  3. Sissy Spacek  –  236
  4. Kathleen Turner  –  225
  5. Glenn Close  –  208
  6. Debra Winger  –  201
  7. Cher  –  180
  8. Anjelica Huston  –  179
  9. Judy Davis  –  175
  10. Michelle Pfeiffer  –  174

Top 10 Points:  1990-1999

  1. Emma Thompson  –  599
  2. Julianne Moore  –  463
  3. Kate Winslet  –  304
  4. Meryl Streep  –  280
  5. Judy Davis  –  263
  6. Jennifer Jason Leigh  –  255
  7. Susan Sarandon  –  248
  8. Sigourney Weaver  –  238
  9. Winona Ryder  –  238
  10. Cate Blanchett  –  221

Top 10 Points:  2000-2011

  1. Cate Blanchett  –  630
  2. Meryl Streep  –  521
  3. Kate Winslet  – 424
  4. Nicole Kidman  –  406
  5. Helen Mirren  –  347
  6. Naomi Watts  –  322
  7. Tilda Swinton  –  321
  8. Laura Linney  –  307
  9. Renee Zellweger  –  301
  10. Michelle Williams  –  283

Top 10 Most Points in a Single Oscar Eligible Year

  1. Julianne Moore  –  1999  –  233  (The End of the Affair  /  An Ideal Husband  /  A Map of the World  /  Cookie’s Fortune)
  2. Emma Thompson  –  1993  –  208  (The Remains of the Day  /  Much Ado About Nothing  /  In the Name of the Father)
  3. Janet Gaynor  –  1927-28  –  166  (Sunrise  /  7th Heaven  /  Street Angel)
  4. Meryl Streep  –  1979  –  156  (Kramer vs. Kramer  /  Manhattan  /  The Seduction of Joe Tynan)
  5. Cate Blanchett  –  2001  –  147  (The Man Who Cried  /  Bandits  /  Fellowship of the Ring  /  The Shipping News)
  6. Meryl Streep  –  2002  –  145  (The Hours  /  Adaptation)
  7. Miranda Richardson  –  1992  –  141  (Enchanted April  /  The Crying Game  /  Damage)
  8. Barbara Stanwyck  –  1941  –  140  (The Lady Eve  /  Ball of Fire  /  Meet John Doe)
  9. Glenda Jackson  –  1971  –  140  (Sunday Bloody Sunday  /  Mary Queen of Scots  /  The Music Lovers)
  10. Jessica Chastain  –  2011  –  134  (The Tree of Life  /  The Help  /  Coriolanus  /  Take Shelter  /  The Debt  /  Texas Killing Fields)

note:  Streep is the only actress to give two 9 star performances in one year.

Top 10 Most Points in Five Consecutive Years

note:  For this list, I only list an actress once, no matter what their total over another five year stretch may be (because often it’s just slightly lower by dropping one end year and moving one year in the other direction).

  1. Emma Thompson  –  1991-95  –  486
  2. Cate Blanchett  –  2000-04  –  421
  3. Julianne Moore  –  1998-02  –  399
  4. Meryl Streep  –  1979-83  –  374
  5. Ingrid Bergman  –  1943-47  –  340  *
  6. Nicole Kidman  –  2001-05  –  311  *
  7. Michelle Pfeiffer  –  1988-92  –  304
  8. Kate Winslet  –  2004-08  –  299
  9. Liv Ullmann  –  1972-76  –  278
  10. Bette Davis  –  1938-42  –  262

note:  Bergman and Kidman actually did their totals in four years.  Bergman earned no points in 1942 (Casablanca is in 1943 for awards purposes) and made no films in 1947.  Kidman made no films in 2000 and earned no points in 2005.

The 100 Greatest Film Actresses of All-Time (through 2011)


#100  –  Thelma Ritter

187 points
1902-1969, American
6 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance: All About Eve
The great character actress of all-time, often playing maids and best friends.  She makes the Top 10 in the 50’s when she earned five of her Oscar noms.  She is still the all-time leader in nominations for Supporting Actress at the Oscars.

#99  –  Jean Arthur

191 points
1900-1991, American
1 Oscar nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Gravel voiced actress who played wise-cracking dames in the 30’s, often for Frank Capra.  Was never properly appreciated by the Oscars and left films after 1944, only making two more movies and mostly sticking to Broadway.  She might seem too low but I’m glad she even made the list with how short her career was.

#98  –  Irene Dunne

191 points
1898-1990, American
5 Oscar noms, NH nom
Best Performance:  The Awful Truth
One of the stars of the Screwball Comedy and the rare comedic actress liked by the Academy, even if three of her nominations were for Dramas.  She only made 41 films and she retired at the age of 54.

#97  –  Marisa Tomei

194 points
b. 1964, American
3 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, 2 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  In the Bedroom
Tomei won one of the stranger (and not particularly deserved) Oscars of all-time for My Cousin Vinny.  But, the next decade, with performances in In the Bedroom, Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead and The Wrestler, she turned into one hell of an actress, using her sensuality that didn’t fade as she aged.  She’s one of only two actresses to make the list without any points as a lead.

#96  –  Carole Lombard

200 points
1908-1942, American
Oscar nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  My Man Godfrey
Probably the most beautiful of the great Screwball Comedy actresses, she gave great performances in the likes of Twentieth Century, My Man Godfrey, Nothing Sacred, Mr. & Mrs. Smith and To Be or Not to Be before she was tragically killed in a plane crash in 1942 while on a war bond tour.

#95  –  Grace Kelly

202 points
1929-1982, American
Oscar, 2 Globes, NYFC, NBR, NH
2 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Country Girl
1992, October, Tower Records, Cambridge.  Standing behind a 40 something guy in line, watching Casablanca on the television.  He says “Ingrid Bergman must have been just about the most beautiful woman who ever lived.”  “I beg to differ,” I say.  He turns, sees I am 17 and says “You’re gonna say Cindy Crawford or one of those supermodels and ruin my day.”  “Grace Kelly.”  Pause.  “I can accept that.”  But she was also a great actress in a very short span making just 11 films but making them with dignity and style.  She could have been an all-time great but I can’t blame her for deciding to be a princess instead.

#94  –  Cher

206 points
b. 1946, American
Oscar, 2 Globes, 2 BAFTA noms
2 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Moonstruck
Cher apparently can do anything she wants to because after being a very successful singer for years she turned to acting and quickly established herself as a serious actress with Come Back to the 5 and Dime and Silkwood.  She missed out on an Oscar nom for Mask but won the Oscar for Moonstruck and then went on to do less weighty roles after that.

#93  –  Charlize Theron

210 points
b. 1975, South African
Oscar, Globe, SAG, NSFC
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Monster
She began as another pretty face who “went ugly” and won the Oscar with Monster.  But since then in films like North Country, In the Valley of Elah and Young Adult she has proven that Monster was not a fluke but just findings the depths of her talent.

#92  –  Penélope Cruz

211 points
b. 1974, Spanish
3 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Cruz was one of those tricky actresses when she first came to Hollywood because she seemed like just a pretty face who couldn’t act very well.  But she had been very good in Spain and would, after a few years, find her rhythm in English as well, though her best performances (Volver, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Broken Embraces) would still be in Spanish (or mostly so).

#91  –  Kathy Bates

214 points
b. 1948, American
Oscar, Globe, BFCA, SAG, CFC (twice), NBR
3 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Misery
There was an article the other day about how Kathy Bates almost turned down her role in Waterboy.  Let’s face it – if you think Waterboy when you think of Kathy Bates, you’re reading the wrong website.  She toiled on stage and in small films roles until William Goldman insisted on casting her as Annie Wilkes in Misery which won her the Oscar and established her as a great character actress, which she has proven again and again in films like Dolores Claiborne, Primary Colors, About Schmidt and Midnight in Paris.

#90  –  Isabelle Adjani

218 points
b. 1955, French
2 Oscar noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Story of Adele H.
Adjani burst onto the world scene as a teenager, earning an Oscar nom while just out of her teens (19 when the film was made, 20 when nominated).  She continued to have a strong career in France and would earn another Oscar nom for Camille Claudel and would be criminally overlooked for Queen Margot.

#89  –  Shelley Winters

218 points
1920-2006, American
2 Oscars, Globe
4 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Diary of Anne Frank
Poor Shelley had to be dumped in a lake in favor of Liz Taylor in A Place in the Sun but it was her performance that (deservedly) got the Oscar nom.  She would later become the first actress (and until 1994 the only one) to win two supporting Oscars and would earn 4 total noms even if the Academy overlooked one of her best performances as Charlotte Haze in Lolita.

#88  –  Jane Wyman

220 points
1917-2007, American
Oscar, 2 Globes
4 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms
Best Performance:  Johnny Belinda
Often thought of as Ronald Reagan’s first wife (though he was one of her four husbands) or for being on Falcon Crest, but she was a really good actress during (The Lost Weekend, The Yearling, Johnny Belinda) and after (Stage Fright, The Blue Veil, Magnificent Obsession) Ronnie.

#87  –  Julie Andrews

226 points
b. 1935, English
Oscar, 3 Globes, NH
3 Oscar noms, 9 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Mary Poppins
Famously, Andrews missed out on the film version of My Fair Lady (too bad since Andrews can play guttersnipe and a lady) but won the Oscar for Mary Poppins the same year.  But also that year she proved she could play a very different role in The Americanization of Emily.  She earned almost half her points that year but her performance is the best thing about The Sound of Music, she’s solid in Star! and she’s fantastic in Victor/Victoria.

#86  –  Dianne Wiest

231 points
b. 1946, American
2 Oscars, Globe, NYFC (twice), LAFC (twice), NSFC (twice), BSFC, CFC, NBR, NH
3 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Bullets over Broadway
Wiest is more than just her two Oscar-winning performances in Woody Allen films, though yes, they account for slightly over half her total.  But there is her performance in Allen’s September, her Oscar nominated performance in Parenthood and her performance as the woman who just wants to be liked best by someone in The Birdcage.  Plus she has had dozens of films where she is solid but doesn’t make my list.  The highest actress on the list without any points as a lead.

#85  –  Zhang Ziyi

233 points
b. 1979, Chinese
Globe nom, 3 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, NH nom
Best Performance:  Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
I was a little surprised that Ziyi made the list but it isn’t just Crouching Tiger and House of Flying Daggers that made Ziyi such a powerhouse.  In just a few years she did not only those films but also The Road Home, Hero, 2046 and Memoirs of a Geisha, a remarkable string of acting performances.

#84  –  Kathleen Turner

233 points
b. 1954, American
2 Globes, LAFC, NBR
Oscar nom, 4 Globe noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Prizzi’s Honor
Turner in the 80’s seemed like the next big actress.  She did a run of sultry performances (helped by her Bacall-like voice) and proved she could be both dangerous and funny.  But the Academy failed to appreciate her, possibly because she was comedic (all four of her Globe noms are in Comedy).  Then, in the early 90’s she was hit by arthritis and when the combination of disease and alcohol hit her looks, Hollywood basically abandoned her (though she did strong theater work) even though films like Virgin Suicides showed she could still act.

#83  –  Greer Garson

234 points
1904-1996, Scotch-Irish
Oscar, Globe, NBR (3), NH
7 Oscar noms, Globe nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Mrs. Miniver
It’s worth remembering that the first six of Garson’s Oscar noms occurred over a period of just seven years with five coming in a row from 1942 to 1946, something that only Bette Davis has done (yes, even Meryl has never been nominated more than three straight years).  When she arrived from Britain, MGM made her a massive star, often teaming with Walter Pidgeon (they were nominated together in 1942 and 1943 both times for playing a married couple).  After she left MGM in 1954 she only appeared in a handful of films though she did earn one final Oscar nomination (and her rather surprising Globe win) in 1960 for Sunrise at Campobello.

#82  –  Amy Adams

250 points
b. 1974, American
3 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Enchanted
Even though I had seen her in several films and she had even earned an Oscar nom (and Nighthawk nom) for Junebug, I still didn’t really have much of an idea who Amy Adams was until the release of Enchanted.  Her performance in that film completely floored me and from then on, I absolutely knew who she was (and that she was only two months older than me, making her, always, an age appropriate crush).  She has continually been a bridesmaid at awards shows and never the bride but hopefully someday soon she will break through and start winning awards and not just earning nominations.

#81  –  Emily Watson

251 points
b. 1967, English
2 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, NH nom
Best Performance:  Breaking the Waves
Watson burst out of nowhere with her bold performance in Breaking the Waves then continued, for the next several years to play a wide array of fascinating roles, earning almost all of her points in a stretch from 1996 to 2001 with films like The Boxer, Hilary and Jackie, Angela’s Ashes, Trixie and Gosford Park.  Since then, she has settled into most smaller character parts but is always fascinating to watch.

#80  –  Greta Garbo

260 points
1905-1990, Swedish
NYFC (twice), NBR (3)
4 Oscar noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Anna Christie
It’s somehow appropriate that almost every time I try to write Greta Garbo I end up typing Great Garbo.  Actually, though, what I found her to be, was very good most of the time, but in almost every film she was in after arriving in America she was very good which is why she piled up so many points in just over a decade.  In 1941, after just 28 films (and just 14 sound films) she retired from acting.

#79  –  Norma Shearer

261 points
1902-1983, Canadian
Oscar, NH
6 Oscar noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Divorcee
Thankfully I came of age after Norma Shearer’s Pre-Code career was rediscovered and she was seen as more than just a bland actress who was married to Irving Thalberg.  Her Pre-Code work is some of the best of the era and some of her best and I feel that her work after 1934 is under-appreciated.  It doesn’t hurt my appreciation of her that I find her to also be the most beautiful actress of the era.  Another great who retired early, only making a handful of films after Thalberg died in 1936 and retiring for good in 1942.

#78  –  Mia Farrow

269 points
b. 1945, American
5 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Rosemary’s Baby
That her best performance came years before she was associated with Woody Allen proves that she could always act but that the bulk of her good acting performances came in Allen films (including 3 of her 5 Globe noms) also shows that Allen brought out the best in her.  Never nominated for an Oscar, her best work is Rosemary’s Baby, Broadway Danny Rose and The Purple Rose of Cairo.

#77  –  Barbra Streisand

270 ponts
b. 1942, American
Oscar, 2 Globes
2 Oscar noms, 8 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, NH nom
Best Performance:  Funny Girl
Of course, Streisand doesn’t need to prove herself as an actress since she’s so talented across the board (she actually has 2 Oscars and 5 noms in three different categories and Director isn’t one of them).  It’s damn impressive though that she ranks this high having made less than 20 films (which also makes the 8 Globe noms especially impressive as well).  When she acts, she does it quite well.

#76  –  Elizabeth Taylor

270 points
1932-2011, born in England to American parents
2 Oscars, Globe, BAFTA, NYFC, NBR, 2 NH
5 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf
Taylor has the two really amazing performances (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is the other in spite of the Oscar for BUtterfield 8) that actually provide just over half her points.  But she did earn 5 Oscar nominations and is in the Top 10 for Oscar points all-time.  She started out as a pretty child actor then became a gorgeous adult but like Jane Fonda later, her acting came after she was already a big star.

#75  –  Marlene Dietrich

273 points
1901-1992, German
Oscar nom, Globe nom, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Witness for the Prosecution
I don’t know that there was someone working in Hollywood as long who was this good and was so under-appreciated by the awards groups.  She continued to act for well over 30 years after coming over from Germany and all she had to show for it were one Oscar nom and one Globe nom.  Films in that time that went completely unrewarded included Shanghai Express, The Scarlett Empress, Desire, Stage Fright, Touch of Evil and Judgment at Nuremberg.

#74  –  Gong Li

277 points
b. 1965, Chinese
2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Raise the Red Lantern
Zhang Yimou’s favorite actress, Li became well known internationally while still in her twenties for a series of films made for Yimou (Red Sorghum, Ju Do, Raise the Red Lantern, Shanghai Triad) though her actual awards weren’t for those but were rather for Farewell My Concubine and Memoirs of a Geisha (where she proved, like so many great international actresses, that she could also be a great actress in English).

#73  –  Teresa Wright

277 points
1918-2005, American
Oscar, NBR (twice), NH
3 Oscar noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Little Foxes
Wright’s career would die off pretty quickly after the 40’s, though she was solid in The Men and would return years later for a nice performance in Roseland.  But what a decade she had during the 40’s: the second actress to earn Oscar nominations in both categories in one year (winning in supporting) and being the best actress at playing someone’s daughter in The Little Foxes, Mrs. Miniver, Shadow of a Doubt and The Best Years of Our Lives.

#72  –  Lilian Gish

279 points
1893-1993, American
Oscar nom, Globe nom, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Wind
I don’t think there would be a lot of argument if I declared that Gish is the best actress of the Silent Era.  In films such Birth of a Nation, Broken Blossoms and Orphans of the Storm, she was D.W. Griffith’s muse on screen.  But her best performance would be after Griffith, as the woman slowly going crazy in The Wind.  She would, years later, still earn acclaim for Duel in the Sun, and at the age of 94, The Whales of August.

#71  –  Julia Roberts

280 points
b. 1967, American
Oscar, 3 Globes, BAFTA, SAG, BFCA, LAFC, NBR
3 Oscar noms, 7 Oscar noms, 2 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Closer
Unlike other actresses, it didn’t like for Roberts to go from jaw-dropping beauty to acclaimed actress, winning a Globe and earning an Oscar nom in both 1989 (Steel Magnolias) and 1990 (Pretty Woman).  It would take another decade before she finally won all the awards for Erin Brockovich but with films like My Best Friend’s Wedding, Notting Hill and Duplicity she has shown a deft hand at Comedies while Closer proved she is one hell of a dramatic actress.

#70  –  Faye Dunaway

282 points
b. 1941, American
Oscar, 3 NH
3 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Bonnie and Clyde
Even more than Liz Taylor, Dunaway goes for quality over quantity.  She earns three Nighthawk nominations and wins all three awards for Bonnie and Clyde, Chinatown and Network.  The rest of her career is much less distinguished and sometimes even terrible but those three performances are amazing.

#69  –  Gloria Swanson

286 points
1899-1983, American
Globe, NBR, NH
3 Oscar noms, Globe, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Sunset Blvd.
If it were just about her performance as Norma Desmond, Swanson would have headed the list at the top of the post.  But she was a great silent actress (and in the early bit of sound), earning Nighthawk nominations for Male and Female, Sadie Thompson and The Trespasser (earning Oscar noms for the last two) and coming close with Queen Kelly which wouldn’t be released until 1985.

#68  –  Toni Collette

287 points
b. 1972, Australian
Oscar nom, 2 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Sixth Sense
Collette quickly became an international star with Muriel’s Wedding but continued on with a wide array of work: Velvet Goldmine, The Sixth Sense, About a Boy, Japanese Story, In Her Shoes, Little Miss Sunshine.  One of the more fascinating and diverse actresses at work today.

#67  –  Miranda Richardson

287 points
b. 1958, English
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 4 BAFTA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Crying Game
It’s true that Richardson has never come closing to matching what she did in 1992 with Enchanted April, Damage and The Crying Game, which account for the bulk of her awards but what a year it was.  And just to focus on that year ignores her solid work before (Dance with a Stranger) and since (Tom & Viv, The Hours, Made in Dagenham).

#66  –  Barbara Stanwyck

287 points
1907-1990, American
4 Oscar noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Lady Eve
Like Richardson, Stanwyck earned 287 total points and earned almost half of it in just one year.  In her case, it’s 1941, when she was amazing in The Lady Eve, Ball of Fire and Meet John Doe.  But, of course, she earned three other Oscar noms (Stella Dallas, Double Indemnity, Sorry Wrong Number).

#65  –  Geraldine Page

289 points
1924-1987, American
Oscar, 2 Globes, BAFTA, BSFC, NBR (twice)
8 Oscar noms, 8 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Interiors
For a while there, it looked like Geraldine Page would be the female Richard Burton, always nominated, never winning at the Oscars.  But in that final major film role, The Trip to Bountiful, she finally won over a lack of strong competition and certainly some sympathy.  But she had been very good for a long time in Hondo, Summer and Smoke, Sweet Bird of Youth and especially Interiors.

#64  –  Natalie Wood

294 points
1938-1981, American
3 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Splendor in the Grass
Natalie was a good child actor in films like Miracle on 34th Street before turning into a great teen actress in Rebel Without a Cause.  She was a star in films like West Side Story (even if she didn’t do her own singing) but her acting was the best in films like Splendor in the Grass, Love with the Proper Stranger and Inside Daisy Clover.  Sadly, she stepped away for most of the 70’s and then died in 1981 without making much of an acting impact.  But from 1955 to 1969 she was one of the best actresses working in Hollywood.

#63  –  Glenn Close

295 points
b. 1947, American
6 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Dangerous Liaisons
Close was on stage for almost a decade before she earned an Oscar nom for her debut film The World According to Garp.  She quickly started racking up Oscar noms (three supporting noms in a row, five total noms in seven years) but she also kept not winning (though in 1988 she was the best of the nominees in Dangerous Liaisons).  She did a lot of television work starting in the 90’s but can still be counted on to give great film performances and earned a sixth Oscar nom for Albert Nobbs in 2011.

#62  –  Vivien Leigh

295 points
1913-1967, English
2 Oscars, BAFTA, NYFC (twice), NBR, 2 NH
2 Oscar noms, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  A Streetcar Named Desire
Did anyone ever do more with fewer films?  Vivien Leigh acted in just 19 films but she gave two of the greatest performances in film history (she is of only three actresses to win her only two Oscar nominations) and she was very good in several other films as well (Waterloo Bridge, That Hamilton Woman, Caesar and Cleopatra, Ship of Fools) but most of her time was devoted to the stage.

#61  –  Gloria Grahame

295 points
1923-1981, American
Oscar, 2 NH
2 Oscar noms, Globe nom, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Crossfire
The Mythical Monkey who has many great things to say about film, one described Jane Greer as the only noir actress he would let shoot him.  That’s my feeling on Gloria Grahame.  She was sultry and beautiful and an amazing actress in a string of films from 1946 to 1954 including Crossfire, In a Lonely Place, The Bad and the Beautiful, Sudden Fear and The Big Heat.  In that stretch she earned all 295 of her points while in that same period only two other actresses even broke 200 and they just barely did that (de Havilland, Kerr).

#60  –  Ellen Burstyn

296 points
b. 1932, American
6 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Last Picture Show
I get grief for not giving her a high enough score for Requiem for a Dream but I agree she was quite good but not at the same level as the early 70’s with her string of Oscar nominations for The Last Picture Show, The Exorcist and Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore.

#59  –  Janet Gaynor

297 points
1906-1984, American
Oscar, 3 NH
4 Oscar noms, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans
The best actress as film was transitioning from silent to sound, she won the initial Oscar for three performances (which is why I count it as three nominations) and she would later be nominated for A Star is Born (for which she should have won a second Oscar) but in between she was also really good in Lucky Star and State Fair.  She retired from in 1939 when she was just 33 yet still lands in the Top 60 for basically a decade of work.

#58  –  Michelle Williams

300 points
1980, American
Globe, BFCA, BSFC, CFC, 2 NH
3 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  My Week with Marilyn
Michelle Williams is one of the best actresses at work today and it won’t be long before she wins an Oscar.  She won the Nighthawk for Brokeback where she made the transition to serious actress from teen star (though she had already been quite good in Me Without You) and won again for My Week with Marilyn (when she also won the Consensus over Oscar winner Streep and presumed Oscar winner Davis) after earning another Oscar (and Nighthawk) nom for Blue Valentine.

#57  –  Glenda Jackson

306 points
b. 1936, English
2 Oscars, Globe, BAFTA, NYFC (twice), NBR (twice), NH
4 Oscar nom, 6 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Women in Love
Jackson is another actress with a great career packed into a small amount of time.  All of her points were earned in the 70’s, starting with her Oscar winning performance in Women in Love, her magnificent 1971 (Sunday Bloody Sunday, Mary Queen of Scots, The Music Lovers) and then staying solid with her second Oscar (A Touch of Class) as well as Hedda and Stevie.  She would continue to act until the early 90’s and recently returned to the stage but she spent most of the time in-between in politics as both an MP and a minor minister.

#56  –  Helena Bonham Carter

312 points
b. 1966, English
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Wings of the Dove
Bonham Carter was solid in the two Merchant-Ivory Forster adaptations but was overshadowed by the supporting players in A Room with a View and by Emma Thompson in Howards End.  But she broke through with the awards with Wings of the Dove (winning the Consensus) and later again with The King’s Speech.  Her work with her ex, Tim Burton, isn’t as distinguished though she was great in Sweeney Todd.

#55  –  Bibi Andersson

313 points
b. 1935, Swedish
NSFC (twice), 2 NH
BAFTA nom, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Persona
She started off with a small role in Smiles of a Summer Night but she really broke through with her great supporting work in The Seventh Seal and Wild Strawberries.  After that, she was a major part of Bergman’s troupe in films such as The Magician, Persona, The Rite, The Touch and Scenes from a Marriage.

#54  –  Isabelle Huppert

319 points
b. 1953, French
Best Performance:  The Piano Teacher
Huppert is a perfect example of why I decided to use this particular point system for my list.  Huppert is a great actress but she has received exactly zero awards attention from the awards I track (she does have a Cesar, the French equivalent of the Oscars and 12 other Cesar nominations) and doesn’t even have a Nighthawk nomination though she has four Top 10 finishes and three more Top 15 finishes.  That her best performance, The Piano Teacher, isn’t one of the Top 10 finishes (those are Violette, Entre Nous, Story of Women and Time of the Wolf) says something about the way luck works into the awards, which, again, is why I used this particular point system for this list.

#53  –  Jennifer Jason Leigh

321 points
b. 1962, American
Globe nom, NH nom
Best Performance:  Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle
My friend Tavis’ favorite actress, not the least of which why is because they have the same birthday.  Another actress who often just misses out on Nighthawk nominations for films like Miami Blues, Last Exit to Brooklyn, Hudsucker Proxy, Georgia, Kansas City, Washington Square, eXistenZ, The Anniversary Party and Margot at the Wedding.  But she did earn one for Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle for which the Academy stupidly overlooked her.

#52  –  Wendy Hiller

321 points
1912-2003, English
Oscar, NBR, NH
3 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Pygmalion
The Oscars recognized her for Separate Tables and she earned nominations for Pygmalion and Sons and Lovers and she deserved her plaudits (she actually deserved to win for Pygmalion).  But that overlooks Major Barbara, I Know Where I’m Going and small, but key supporting roles in A Man for All Seasons and The Elephant Man.  Pretty damn good considering she only acted in 19 films.

#51  –  Naomi Watts

322 points
b. 1968, English
Oscar nom, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, BFCA nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  21 Grams
I had not seen Watts before I walked into Mulholland Dr. and walked out having seen what I still consider the Sexiest Performance of All-TIme.  I didn’t know she would be the odd year film actress of the decade, following that up with 21 Grams (Nighthawk win), King Kong (Nighthawk nom) and Eastern Promises (just misses out on a Nighthawk nom) and also threw in The Painted Veil (again, just misses out on a Nighthawk nom).

#50  –  Laura Linney

322 points
b. 1964, American
3 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  You Can Count on Me
I once saw Linney described as “the actress your wife doesn’t mind you having a crush on.”  Perhaps that’s because she’s attractive but not stunningly beautiful like so many actresses on this list.  Or maybe because she’s so good.  Linney slowly made her way up through lots of solid supporting roles before her breakthrough Oscar nominated, multiple-critic-winning role for You Can Count on Me and in the next few years she was everywhere with Mystic River, P.S., Kinsey, The Squid and the Whale and The Savages.  Her film work has fallen off thanks to her role on The Big C but hopefully she’ll do more films in the future.

#49  –  Olivia de Havilland

324 points
1916, born in Japan to English parents
2 Oscars, Globe, NYFC (twice), NBR, 2 NH
5 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Heiress
The older sister of Joan Fontaine, Olivia became a star playing Errol Flynn’s romantic lead in several films.  But, with Gone with the Wind, she proved she was more than just that and earned the first of her 5 Oscar noms, including two wins (although, not for her two best performances).  Though her acting wasn’t at that same level after the 40’s, she continued acting all the way until the late 80’s.  At 102, she is the last surviving member of Gone with the Wind (80 years later!) and is the oldest living Oscar winner in any category (though she has two years to catch Luise Rainer for oldest age of an Oscar winning lead actress).  She is 13 years older than the next oldest living Best Actress winner (Joanne Woodward) and 8 years older than the next oldest living acting winner at all (Eva Marie Saint) and is the oldest person on this list still alive.

#48  –  Ingrid Thulin

326 points
1926-2004, Swedish
BAFTA nom, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Cries and Whispers
Did Sweden have this range of great actresses and Ingmar Bergman found them all or was his directing in part responsible?  Probably a combination of the two.  Thulin started with Wild Strawberries, then had lead roles in The Magician, Winter Light and The Silence before hitting her peak as one of the leads in Cries and Whispers.  She was one of the last actresses still working with Bergman in After the Rehearsal.  Of the four great actresses to work with Bergman, she was the one least appreciated by awards groups.

#47  –  Rosalind Russell

327 points
1907-1976, American
5 Globes
4 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  His Girl Friday
The Globes loved Rosalind Russell.  Every time she was nominated, she won the award, including in back-to-back years in Comedy in 1961 (A Majority of One) and 1962 (Gypsy).  But the Globes actually missed her best work, because it came too early (Night Must Fall, The Women, His Girl Friday) or they just somehow didn’t nominate it (Picnic).

#46  –  Anna Magnani

331 points
1908-1973, Italian
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, NYFC, NBR (twice), NH
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Rose Tattoo
Everyone in 1955 agreed that Magnani gave the best performance of the year in The Rose Tattoo (not in her native language, no less) and she swept all the existing awards and won the Nighthawk.  The play had actually been written for her but she refused to do it on stage because she feared her command of English wasn’t strong enough.  But just to focus on that misses her great work in Italy (Open City, Amore, Bellisima) or her solid work afterwards acting in English (Wild is the Wind, The Secret of Santa Vittoria).

#45  –  Joan Allen

332 points
1956, American
2 BFCA, LAFC (twice), NSFC, BSFC, CFC (twice)
3 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 3 BFCA noms, 2 SAG noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Crucible
After working in small supporting performances in years in films like Manhunter, Peggy Sue Got Married and Tucker, Allen broke through in 1995 playing Pat Nixon.  The bulk of her points came in a four year stretch then from 1995 to 1998 (Nixon, The Crucible, The Ice Storm, Pleasantville) though she would earn an Oscar nom in 2000 for The Contender and would be great in 2005 in The Upside of Anger, though after that she has done far less film work.

#44  –  Simone Signoret

340 points
1921-1985, French
Oscar, 3 BAFTAs, NYFC, NBR, NH
2 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, 6 BAFTA noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Room at the Top
Like Magnani, Signoret had been great in her native country (La Ronde, Casque d’Or, Therese Raquin, Diabolique, The Crucible) and then did a role in English that swept (almost) everything including the Nighthawk.  She didn’t abandon acting in English (Term of Trial, Ship of Fools) though she would also return to France (Army of Shadows).

#43  –  Samantha Morton

341 points
b. 1977, English
2 Oscar noms, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, 2 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Sweet and Lowdown
Every now and then I see a film and I am blown away by someone I’d never even heard of before.  That’s what happened when I saw Sweet and Lowdown in the theater.  I had seen the best supporting performance of the year and I had to see this actress in more.  I was able to go back see Under the Skin and she obliged me over the next decade with great performances in Jesus’ Son, Minority Report, Morvern Callar, In America, Control and The Messenger.

#42  –  Natalie Portman

344 points
b. 1981, Israeli-American
Oscar, 2 Globes, BAFTA, SAG, BFCA, BSFC, CFC, NH
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 2 BFCA noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Black Swan
It wouldn’t be until this century that Portman would start being awarded for her acting but she was already a magnificent actress right from the start with her amazing teen performances in Leon and Beautiful Girls.  The awards would start with Closer (but she was also great in Garden State that year) and Black Swan would make her an Oscar (and BAFTA, SAG and BFCA) winning actress.

#41  –  Anjelica Huston

346 points
b. 1951, American
Oscar, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC (3), BSFC (twice), NBR, 2 NH
3 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Grifters
Huston began as a teenager in one of her father’s films but, ironically, it wasn’t until the mid-80’s, when she worked for her father again (winning the Oscar for Prizzi’s Honor) that she emerged as a great actress.  From there came a string of magnificent performances including but not limited to The Dead, Enemies a Love Story, The Grifters, The Crossing Guard and The Royal Tenenbaums.

#40  –  Harriet Andersson

354 points
b. 1932, Swedish
3 NH
BAFTA nom, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Through a Glass Darkly
Andersson was the first actress to really break through internationally as a result of working with Ingmar Bergman.  Monika and Sawdust and Tinsel were a major 1-2 punch then she went supporting (and blonde) for Smiles of a Summer Night (winning her first Nighthawk), was a heart-breaking lead in Through a Glass Darkly, went back to supporting for Cries and Whispers and again for Fanny and Alexander.

#39  –  Debra Winger

359 points
b. 1955, American
3 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Terms of Endearment
My favorite actress from a very young age (well before I was seriously interested in film), it was after I started tracking films that I started watching her really great performances like An Officer and a Gentleman and Terms of Endearment.  Even in sub-par films like Mike’s Murder and Betrayed she was worth watching and she returned to the Oscar race with Shadowlands and reminded us that she’s still worth watching even if she doesn’t do much acting anymore in Rachel Getting Married.

#38  –  Winona Ryder

364 points
b. 1971, American
Globe, NBR (twice), NH
2 Oscar noms, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Crucible
Before she went kind of nuts, Ryder provided a decade’s worth of amazing acting.  After a sneak preview with Lucas, her decade included Beetlejuice, Heathers, Mermaids, The Age of Innocence, Little Women and The CrucibleBlack Swan, while a small role, proved that she can still act and might return to the list again in the future.

#37  –  Holly Hunter

369 points
b. 1958, American
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, NYFC (twice), LAFC (twice), NSFC, BSFC (twice), CFC, NBR (twice), NH
4 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, BFCA nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Broadcast News
Though 1993 was her big year with awards, becoming the first actress nominated for both Oscars in one year to win the lead, it was 1987 where she really broke through, winning the Nighthawk (and Consensus) for Broadcast News and also making Raising Arizona, showing her range.  But aside from those two powerhouse years, there’s also her work in Always, Home for the Holidays, Living Out Loud and Thirteen.

#36  –  Jessica Lange

370 points
b. 1949, American
Oscar, NH
6 Oscar noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Tootsie
Lange, like Taylor and Fonda, began as a beauty and gradually turned into an actress.  It was All That Jazz that first showed she could act as the haunting Angel of Death, then she became just the third actress and the first in 40 years to earn Oscar nominations in both categories (and like the first two, won in supporting).  She then became a regular Oscar nominee, earning four more nominations and a second (though this time undeserved) Oscar for Blue Sky.

#35  –  Gwyneth Paltrow

372 points
b. 1972, American
Oscar, Globe, SAG, NH
Oscar nom, 2 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Proof
I may lose a lot of people here but you have to look at Gwyneth’s acting and not her kinda bonkers personality.  She gave a sneak preview with Flesh and Bone, then she had an incredible decade that began with Emma (proving she really could act), Shakespeare in Love (even if Blanchett should have won the Oscar), Sliding Doors, The Royal Tenenbaums, Possession, Sylvia and Proof (perhaps the most under-rated performance of the last decade).

#34  –  Anne Bancroft

378 points
1931-2005, American
Oscar, 2 Globes, 3 BAFTAs, NBR (twice), NH
5 Oscar noms, 8 Globe noms, 7 BAFTA noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Graduate
This is why I do my points system – when your best performance is not the one you win the Nighthawk for (or the Oscar which isn’t even the same she won the Nighthawk for), it shows that you have to look at the quality of the performances, not where they rank in that year (or which awards it won).  Before she ever played Mrs. Robinson she was good in The Restless Breed, brilliant in The Miracle Worker and The Pumpkin Eater and in the years afterwards she still was solid in films like The Turning Point, Agnes of God, ‘night Mother and 84 Charing Cross Road.  But I will forever in my mind be hearing her ask “Do you want me to seduce you?  Is that what you’re trying to say?”

#33  –  Juliette Binoche

379 points
b. 1964, French
Oscar, BAFTA
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  The English Patient
One of those great actresses who won an Oscar in a language other than her native one.  She’s been equally adept at being a great actress in French (Blue, Lovers on the Bridge, The Widow of Saint Pierre, Cache, Summer Hours) and English (The Unbearable Lightness of Being, The English Patient, Chocolat).  If you have only seen her English language performances you are missing some great work.

#32  –  Catherine Deneuve

384 points
b. 1943, French
Oscar nom, BAFTA nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Repulsion
I had a friend in college who wrote a columned poem called “Arguments for and Against the Existence of God”.  Catherine Deneuve was on the list on the “for” side (it was the same year that Belle de Jour was re-released into theaters).  It’s ridiculous that it took the Academy until 1992 to finally toss her a nomination for a performance in Indochine that was good but was a far cry short of her work in The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Repulsion, Belle de Jour, Tristana or The Last Metro.  Again, I don’t track the Cesar, but she does have 2 wins among her 14 nominations.  She continued to earn points this century for 8 Women, A Christmas Tale and Potiche.

#31  –  Annette Bening

384 points
b. 1958, American
4 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  American Beauty
This may seem out of order since the way I break ties is that whichever actress reached the point total first goes higher on the list.  Well, Deneuve earned her most recent points in 2011 going up to 384 while Bening’s most recent points were in 2010 so she reached 384 points first.  Some day the Academy will give Bening an award and it will be long, long overdue.  After a strong role in Valmont she really broke out in 1990-91 with The Grifters, Bugsy and Guilty by Suspicion.  Since then, there has been American Beauty (for which she should have won the Oscar), Being Julia and The Kids are All Right as well as other roles too numerous to mention in which she still makes the list, which she does a lot.

#30  –  Tilda Swinton

400 points
b. 1960, English
Oscar nom, 3 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, BFCA noms, NH nom
Best Performance:  Michael Clayton
Swinton is another good example of why I did the list this way.  She only has one Nighthawk nomination as you can see (Michael Clayton) but she has finished in the Top 10 a whopping 7 other times (Orlando, Female Perversions, The Deep End, Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, Burn After Reading, I Am Love, We Need to Talk About Kevin).  She is a fascinating but very strange actress who can look very beautiful (Vanilla Sky) but seems to prefer burying herself in makeup.

#29  –  Jodie Foster

409 points
b. 1962, American
2 Oscars, 2 Globes, 2 BAFTAs, SAG, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC, CFC, NBR, 2 NH
4 Oscar noms, 7 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Silence of the Lambs
Two years younger than Swinton but she first appears on my lists 17 years earlier.  Astoundingly talented, winning two Oscars (and two Nighthawks for a different role) by the age of 30.  She could have been much higher on the list but she took time off for college and she’s greatly reduced her acting roles in the last 15 years.

#28  –  Frances McDormand

410 points
b. 1957, American
Oscar, SAG, 2 BFCA, LAFC, BSFC, CFC (3), NBR (twice), 2 NH
4 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Fargo
Fran’s debut role was also one of her best, Blood Simple, and one that wouldn’t get the acclaim it deserved.  She would start with the awards nominations three years later with Mississippi Burning, continuing with Fargo, Almost Famous, Wonder Boys and North Country plus good but less acclaimed work in The Man Who Wasn’t There, Laurel Canyon and Burn After Reading.

#27  –  Jane Fonda

413 points
b. 1937, American
2 Oscars, 3 Globes, 2 BAFTAs, NYFC (twice), LAFC, NSFC, 2 NH
7 Oscar noms, 9 Globe noms, 7 BAFTA noms, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  They Shoot Horses, Don’t They
How to pick what is Fonda’s best performance?  I went with her determined dancer in Horses, but it could have been her Oscar-winning prostitute trying to escape death in Klute or her Oscar-winning woman discovering herself in Coming Home and she’s very good in both Julia and The China Syndrome, just a step down plus she’s got more Oscar nominated performances in On Golden Pond and The Morning After.  She’s Top 5 in both Oscar and Globe points and Top 10 for BAFTA points.  And she did all of that after a mostly wasted decade of being God damn sexy (Barbarella) without doing much acting.

#26  –  Joanne Woodward

420 points
b. 1930, American
Oscar, 2 Globes, BAFTA, NYFC (3), NBR, NH
4 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 4 BAFTA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Three Faces of Eve
She broke through at the Oscars, winning before Paul Newman even earned his first nomination.  After that, there would be big gaps though between nominations for Rachel Rachel, Summer Wishes Winter Dreams and Mr. and Mrs. Bridge.  Not that she wasn’t doing strong work in between with films like The Fugitive Kind, They Might Be Giants and The Glass Menagerie.  She seemed to have stopped acting when Newman died (I got to see the two of them in Borders one night which made me very happy) and her last great performance was on television (Empire Falls) so it doesn’t count for this project but it’s good to know she was still capable of great work.

#25  –  Renee Zellweger

432 points
b. 1969, American
Oscar, 3 Globes, BAFTA, 2 SAG, BFCA
3 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 4 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Chicago
This is another one that may seem surprising but you have to remember how great Zellweger was for a decade.  After mostly unrewarded great work in Jerry Maguire, The Whole Wide World, One True Thing and Nurse Betty, she started hitting the awards circuit for three straight years with Bridget Jones (proof that she had range with this Texas girl playing a true Brit), Chicago and Cold Mountain and then doing encore work in Cinderella Man plus lesser but still solid work in the second Bridget Jones and Miss Potter.  It’s worth remembering that she is one just four actresses since 1960 to earn three straight Oscar nominations.

#24  –  Judy Davis

438 points
b. 1955, Australian
BAFTA, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC (twice), BSFC (twice), NBR, CFC, NH
2 Oscar Noms, Globe nom, 2 BAFTA noms, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  A Passage to India
At least the Emmys have properly appreciated her, with 3 wins among 10 nominations.  The critics, as well, have given her proper credit, as can be seen by all the awards she’s won, for her supporting performances in 1991 (Barton Fink, The Naked Lunch) and 1992 (Husbands and Wives).  She would be brilliant in supporting again in 1997 (Absolute Power, Deconstructing Harry) and she had already proven in My Brilliant Career, A Passage to India and High Tide that she could be a fantastic lead as well.

#23  –  Judi Dench

443 points
b. 1934, English
Oscar, Globe, 5 BAFTAs, SAG, NSFC, CFC, NH
6 Oscar noms, 7 Globe noms, 12 BAFTA noms, 7 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Shakespeare in Love
Many actresses are appreciated when they are young but Dench wouldn’t earn her first Oscar nomination until her 60’s and then has earned an astounding five more.  Even the BAFTAs didn’t nominate her for a film award until after she turned 50 and she has 12 nominations there.  What not to list at this point?  In the 80’s there was Wetherby and A Room with a View.  But starting in 1997, there’s Mrs. Brown, Shakespeare in Love, Chocolat, The Shipping News, Iris, Mrs. Henderson Presents, Notes on a Scandal and Casino Royale.  She is not only the only actress on the list who didn’t earn points before turning 50 but she’s also one of three who didn’t earn any points before the age of 40 (Kathy Bates and Thelma Ritter are the other two).  The next highest point total for someone who didn’t earn any points before turning 50?  Edith Evans with 158.

#22  –  Michelle Pfeiffer

451 points
b. 1958, American
3 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Fabulous Baker Boys
After Grease 2, you could have been forgiven for abandoning all hope in the beautiful blonde but six years later she would prove she was equally adept in Drama (Dangerous Liaisons) and Comedy (Married to the Mob).  The next year she won almost everything but the Oscar for The Fabulous Baker Boys then came a string of performances (The Russia House, Frankie and Johnny, Love Field, Batman Returns, The Age of Innocence).  She fell off for a bit after that but in 2007 returned with a vengeance in Stardust and Hairspray.

#21  –  Julie Christie

465 points
b. 1940, born in India to English parents
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, SAG, BFCA, NYFC (3), NSFC (twice), NBR, NH
4 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 7 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, BFCA nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Away from Her
Though she was mostly eye candy in Doctor Zhivago she had already given the best performance of the year in Darling.  After that, she would be off an on, occasionally going years between solid performances but then emerging with amazing performances like McCabe & Mrs. Miller, Don’t Look Now, Afterglow or Away from Her.  And she has a pile of lesser but still list-worthy performances (Billy Liar, Petulia, The Go-Between, Shampoo, Heaven Can Wait, Heat and Dust, Finding Neverland).

#20  –  Sissy Spacek

472 points
b. 1949, American
Oscar, 3 Globes, NYFC (4), BFCA, LAFC (twice), NSFC (twice), NBR, NH
6 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, BFCA nom, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  In the Bedroom
Like Julie Christie, Spacek would win an again over two decades before actually giving her best performance.  Spacek’s peak was from 1974 to 1986 when she gave an amazing run of performances (Badlands, Carrie, Three Women, Coal Miner’s Daughter, Missing, Country, Crimes from the Heart, ‘night Mother) before roaring back in 2001 with her amazing performance in In the Bedroom, reminding us all that she wasn’t done.

#19  –  Maggie Smith

480 points
b. 1934, English
2 Oscars, 2 Globes, 5 BAFTAs, 3 NH
6 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 11 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 8 NH noms
Best Performance:  A Room with a View
Less than three weeks younger than her good friend Judi Dench, Smith was a great beauty in her youth which is (sadly) perhaps why she became a star so much earlier than Dench.  In the 60’s she had Othello and The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, in the 70’s there was Travels with My Aunt, California Suite and Death on the Nile, the 80’s had A Private Function, A Room with a View and The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne, the 90’s saw her more in television (and wonderful opposite Daniel Radcliffe two years before Harry Potter in David Copperfield), she returned with a vengeance in the 00’s with Gosford Park and if I included all the awards she’s been nominated for on television for Downton Abbey, the lines above would be way too long.

#18  –  Susan Sarandon

481 points
b. 1946, American
5 Oscar noms, 7 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Thelma & Louise
Another actress that took a while to really find her acting measure on screen (not that she’s not fun to watch in Rocky Horror (“Slut!”) but it’s Pretty Baby where she begins to act, Atlantic City where the awards groups started to notice (rightfully so), Bull Durham where she proved that over 40 is very, very sexy and then came the 90’s (White Palace, Thelma & Louise, Lorenzo’s Oil, The Client, Little Women, Dead Man Walking) not that she hasn’t been still doing really strong work this century (Igby Goes Down, Moonlight Mile, Elizabethtown, Lovely Bones).  In one part of my brain she will always be the sexy older redhead I couldn’t watch because my mom at first decided I shouldn’t see Bull Durham because, in her words “too much sex, not enough baseball”.

#17  –  Vanessa Redgrave

496 points
b. 1937, English
Oscar, Globe, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC (3), NH
6 Oscar noms, 8 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, BFCA nom, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  Julia
The best of a great acting family (by a long way, actually), Redgrave started young, earning her first Oscar nomination (for Morgan) before the age of 30 and has continued strong, earning her latest points in 2011 itself at the age of 74 for Coriolanus.  In between there are such films as Isadora, Mary Queen of Scots, Julia, Agatha, The Bostonians, Wetherby, Prick Up Your Ears, Howards End, A Month by the Lake and Atonement.  What’s interesting about Redgrave is how I don’t ever have her as truly great (no performance of her rates above a six) but how often she is so very good (ten performances at a four or better).  She has also scored at least 37 points in six different decades, one of only two actresses to do so (the other is yet to come on the list).

#16  –  Helen Mirren

510 points
b. 1945, English
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, BFCA, NYFC (twice), LAFC, NSFC (twice), BSFC, CFC, NBR, 2 NH
4 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 4 BAFTA noms, BFCA nom, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Queen
What’s really impressive about Mirren is how long those awards lists would be if I counted her awards for her work on Prime Suspect or other television work.  She’s done amazing work in the 80’s (Excalibur, The Long Good Friday), the 90’s (Cook the Thief his Wife and Her Lover, Madness of King George), the 00’s (Gosford Park, Last Orders, Calendar Girls, The Clearing, The Queen, The Last Station, State of Play) and already in the 10’s (The Tempest).

#15  –  Diane Keaton

518 points
b. 1946, American
Oscar, 2 Globes, BAFTA, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC, NBR, 2 NH
4 Oscars, 8 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Annie Hall
The rare actress with two 9 point performances (Annie Hall, Reds).  Most of the rest of her work isn’t nearly on the same level though Shoot the Moon and Something’s Gotta Give are very good.  Still, she has done, aside from those four, a lot of solid performances that earn at least some points for me and the high level of points for those four films combined with the sheer bulk of the others (The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, Looking for Mr. Goodbar, Mrs. Soffel, Baby Boom, Marvin’s Room, The Family Stone – and those are just the films that don’t involve Woody Allen) lands her really high up on the list.

#14  –  Sigourney Weaver

536 points
b. 1949, American
2 Globes, BAFTA, NH
3 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Death and the Maiden
Appropriate, of course, for Weaver to be right after Keaton since her screen debut was standing opposite Keaton at the end of Annie Hall.  But it wasn’t long before Weaver was a star giving great performances, starting with Alien.  In Aliens she became the rare person to be nominated for acting in a Sci-Fi film and in 1988 she became only the fourth actress to be nominated in both categories at the Oscars (though the first to also lose both).  What’s appalling, though, is to remember that she hasn’t been nominated since in spite of performances like Death and the Maiden, The Ice Storm or A Map of the World, all of them absolutely deserving of nominations (and they all earned Nighthawk noms).

#13  –  Audrey Hepburn

548 points
1929-1993, Dutch-English
Oscar, Globe, 3 BAFTAs, NYFC (twice), 2 NH
5 Oscar noms, 9 Globe noms, 5 BAFTA noms, 5 NH noms
Best Performance:  Breakfast at Tiffany’s
After a cameo in The Lavender Hill Mob, Hepburn burst forth in Roman Holiday, the princess that everyone wanted to see, rightfully winning the Oscar.  She would only make 29 films but she would make the most of them, being one of the foremost comedic actresses not just of her time but of any time.  She was first on the Nighthawk Comedy list from 1966 to 1993, winning 3 awards and earning 9 nominations in the likes of Roman Holiday, Sabrina, Funny Face, Love in the Afternoon, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Charade, My Fair Lady, How to Steal a Million and Two for the Road.  But, with The Nun’s Story and Wait Until Dark she proved that she could also do Drama as well.

#12  –  Nicole Kidman

572 points
b. 1967, Australian born in America
Oscar, 2 Globes, BAFTA, BSFC, BFCA, NH
3 Oscar noms, 8 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 5 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Hours
This one may seem a bit surprising but she’s really been tallying up the points.  She was known first for being beautiful (and then for being Cruise’s wife) but she showed talent in Billy Bathgate and Flirting before hitting her stride for To Die For, Portrait of a Lady and Eyes Wide Shut before the Oscars finally noticed her.  She was nominated for Moulin Rouge though her performance in The Others was better and then won for The Hours and since then has just done Cold Mountain, Birth, Margot at the Wedding, Australia and Rabbit Hole.

#11  –  Ingrid Bergman

610 points
1915-1982, Swedish
3 Oscars, 3 Globes, BAFTA, NYFC (3), NSFC, NBR (4), 4 NH
7 Oscar noms, 7 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 9 NH noms
Best Performance:  Gaslight
In just a four year span from 1943 to 1946 (Casablanca is considered 1943 for awards and she made no films in 1947), Bergman tallied a stunning 340 points in Casablanca, For Whom the Bell Tolls, Gaslight, Spellbound, The Bells of St. Mary’s and Notorious.  Before that stretch she had already been good in Intermezzo and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and of course afterwards she would do Joan of Arc, would win (and deserve) an Oscar for Anastasia, would win another for Murder on the Orient Express and would deserve a final one for Autumn Sonata.  And, as can be read in the Grace Kelly bit, she could be considered the most beautiful woman who ever lived, not that it had anything to do with her incredible acting talent.

#10  –  Liv Ullmann

611 points
b. 1938, Norwegian
Globe, NYFC (3), LAFC, NSFC (3), NBR, NH
2 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 8 NH noms
Best Performance:  Cries and Whispers
Perfectly appropriate to follow Bergman as they played mother and daughter in Autumn Sonata.  Ullmann’s peak was a bit longer than Bergman’s, lasting from 1967 to 1978 and covering a massive amount of Bergman drama (and even some non-Bergman films): Persona, Hour of the Wolf, Shame, The Emigrants, The New Land, Cries and Whispers, Scenes from a Marriage, Face to Face and Autumn Sonata.  Surprisingly enough, she’s not Swedish.  The Oscars never properly appreciated her because she stayed in Europe instead of acting in English (though she eventually would do some acting in English) but the critics knew how good she was.

#9  –  Shirley MacLaine

632 points
b. 1934, American
Oscar, BAFTA, 4 Globes, NYFC, LAFC, NBR, 2 NH
5 Oscar noms, 15 Globe noms, 8 BAFTA noms, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  Terms of Endearment
Like many actresses, MacLaine had a peak period, in her case a long one (1956-1969) when she earned three Oscar nominations (Some Came Running, The Apartment, Irma La Douce) but during that stretch she also earned 5 Globe noms for films that didn’t her Oscar noms (Ask Any Girl, The Children’s Hour, Gambit, Woman Times Seven, Sweet Charity).  Then she didn’t do almost anything for several years before returning to the Oscar race (The Turning Point), the Globe race (Being There) and finally winning her well-deserved Oscar (Terms of Endearment).  Since then, she has continued to be good both in supporting (Postcards from the Edge, In Her Shoes) and lead (Madame Sousatzka, Used People, Guarding Tess).

#8  –  Deborah Kerr

646 points
1921-2007, Scottish
Globe, NYFC (3), 2 NH
6 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, 4 BAFTA noms, 10 NH noms
Best Performance:  From Here to Eternity
Kerr was fantastic in British films for several years (The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, I See a Dark Stranger, Black Narcissus, Edward My Son) before coming to Hollywood and it seems, forgetting how to act (King Solomon’s Mines, Quo Vadis).  But From Here to Eternity righted the ship and from there came numerous performances ranging between very good and great (The End of the Affair, The King and I, Tea and Sympathy, Heaven Knows Mr. Allison, Separate Tables, The Sundowners, The innocents, The Chalk Garden, Night of the Iguana).

#7  –  Julianne Moore

720 points
b. 1960, American
BFCA, LAFC (twice), NSFC, BSFC, CFC, NBR (twice), NH
4 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 5 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 8 NH noms
Best Performance:  Boogie Nights
Given her performances in Short Cuts, Vanya on 42nd Street and Safe, I should have known who Julianne Moore was before Boogie Nights.  After Boogie Nights and Lebowski, of course I knew and loved her but then came 1999 and a year for the ages, a year in which she earned nomination in all four Nighthawk categories (Lead Drama – End of the Affair, Lead Comedy – An Ideal Husband, Supporting Drama – A Map of the World, Supporting Comedy – Cookie’s Fortune) something that had never been done before and probably never to be done again.  Since then, she’s just had the double Oscar nominations in 2002 (Far From Heaven, The Hours), some decent work in mid-decade (Prize Winner of Defiance Ohio, Children of Men) and then a return to very strong work at the end (A Single Man, The Kids are Alright).

#6  –  Kate Winslet

728 points
b. 1975, English
Oscar, 2 Globes, 2 BAFTAs, 2 SAG, BFCA, LAFC, CFC, 3 NH
6 Oscar noms, 8 Globe noms, 7 BAFTA noms, 7 SAG noms, 4 BFCA noms, 6 NH noms
Best Performance:  Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
After showing her talent in Heavenly Creatures she entered the awards race at the age of 20 for Sense and Sensibility, following that up with Hamlet (which deserved awards even if she didn’t get any attention).  Since she first started tallying points in 1994 the only gap of even two years without points is 2009-10.  Since 1996 she has earned points for Titanic, Hideous Kinky, Holy Smoke, Quills, Iris, Eternal Sunshine, Finding Neverland, Little Children, Revolutionary Road, The Reader and Carnage.

#5  –  Emma Thompson

760 points
b. 1959, English
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC, BSFC, CFC, NBR (twice), 3 NH
4 Oscar noms, 6 Globe noms, 4 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 2 BFCA noms, 8 NH noms
Best Performance:  Howards End
Appropriate placement again, as Thompson, of course, plays Winslet’s older sister in Sense and Sensibility.  She was good in Henry V and Dead Again, brilliant in Howards End then had a year for the ages in 1993 (Much Ado About Nothing, Remains of the Day, In the Name of the Father) and another great year in 1995 (Sense, Carrington) while also doing The Winter Guest and Primary Colors.  She’s cooled off since the 90’s but still has Love Actually, Stranger than Fiction, Nanny McPhee and Last Chance Harvey.  Since she won her second Oscar (that one for writing Sense) they seemed to have forgotten she exists.

#4  –  Cate Blanchett

851 points
b. 1969, Australian
Oscar, 2 Globes, 2 BAFTAs, SAG, BFCA, NSFC, CFC (twice), NBR, 4 NH
5 Oscar noms, 7 Globe noms, 5 BAFTA noms, 6 SAG noms, 6 BFCA noms, 8 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Aviator
Cate has been my favorite actress at least since 2001 if not from that special screening of Oscar and Lucinda when I had no idea who she was.  But she wins the Nighthawk for that and again the next year for Elizabeth, in 1999 she was good in supporting in An Ideal Husband and The Talented Mr. Ripley, in 2001 won a critics award for several films (Shipping News, Man Who Cried, Bandits, Fellowship of the Ring) then did Heaven and Veronica Guerin, won the Oscar for The Aviator (and was good in Life Aquatic), earned an Oscar nom for Notes on a Scandal (if not for that, might have earned one for Babel), and earned double Oscar noms the next year (Elizabeth: The Golden Age, I’m Not There).  Her work since 2007 isn’t quite up to the same level but she’ll be earning a lot more points.

#3  –  Bette Davis

856 points
1908-1989, American
2 Oscars, NYFC, NBR (twice), 2 NH
10 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 14 NH noms
Best Performance:  All About Eve
From 1934 to 1945, the best actress in the world.  She won two Oscars during that stretch and earned 7 nominations.  She earns points in every year during that stretch and the only year she doesn’t earn at least 35 points is 1937.  In order, the films are Of Human Bondage, Dangerous, The Petrified Forest, It’s Love I’m After, Jezebel, Dark Victory, The Letter, The Little Foxes, Now Voyager, Watch on the Rhine, Mr. Skeffington and The Corn is Green.  She wouldn’t be nearly as good afterwards except, of course, in her career best performance in All About Eve but there are also The Star, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane, Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte and even The Whales of August when she was almost 80 years old.

#2  –  Katharine Hepburn

877 points
1907-2003, American
4 Oscars, 2 BAFTAs, NYFC, 4 NH
12 Oscar noms, 7 Globe noms, 5 BAFTA noms, 12 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Lion in Winter
The all-time Oscar champ from 1968 to the late 00’s depending on whether you count by points or nominations.  Unlike Davis, who had a definitive peak stretch, Hepburn was great for a long time, spreading out her performances, which is why didn’t win any decade but finished in the Top 10 four decades in a row.  As is well known, she earned 12 Oscar nominations winning four (Morning Glory, Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, The Lion in Winter, On Golden Pond) with that list being a little ridiculous because she didn’t win for The Philadelphia Story, Long Day’s Journey Into Night or The African Queen (which were far better performances than three of her wins) and she wasn’t even nominated for Bringing Up Baby, Little Women or Stage Door.

#1  –  Meryl Streep

1453 points
b. 1949, American
3 Oscars, 7 Globes, 2 BAFTAs, SAG, 2 BFCA, NYFC (5), LAFC (4), NSFC (4), BSFC (twice), CFC, NBR (twice), 3 NH
17 Oscar noms, 24 Globe noms, 14 BAFTA noms, 8 SAG noms, 5 BFCA noms, 18 NH noms
Best Performance:  Sophie’s Choice
The completely ridiculous amount of awards that she has won or been nominated for (though I don’t count them all, the IMDb lists 175 wins and 357 nominations) are not the evidence that she is the greatest actress of all-time but just a reflection of it.  The evidence is her ability to move between nationalities and accents with no trace of what had come before.  She can be whatever she needs to be.  Just look at her Globe nominations – when she took over the all-time lead in Globe Drama points in 1995 she only had three noms in Comedy.  Since then, while she’s earned almost as many points as any other actress in Drama (again), she’s moved almost all the way to the top of the Globe Comedy list.  Or look at this list of performances: Manhattan, The Seduction of Joe Tynan, Plenty, The Hours (if she was listed as supporting).  Those are just the list of Oscar nomination worthy performances in which she was technically ineligible because she was already nominated that year in that category!  Since she first started earning points in 1978, there has only been two stretches of consecutive years where she didn’t earn points (1991-93, which is ironic since she earned a Globe nom) and 2000-01 (when her only film was a small voice performance).  She has, basically (except the 70’s, when she only two years and even then she was close) earned enough points to land in the Top 100 in every single decade.  When she was the top actress of the 80’s, she earned enough points to land in the Top 35 and that was fewer points than she earned in the 00’s.  There is no one else like her.  There is no one even close.


Top 10 Points:  2012-2018

  1. Amy Adams  –  323
  2. Jessica Chastain  –  305
  3. Jennifer Lawrence  –  277
  4. Cate Blanchett  –  264
  5. Emma Stone  –  260
  6. Meryl Streep  –  235
  7. Saoirse Ronan  –  235
  8. Emily Blunt  –  212
  9. Marion Cotillard  –  205
  10. Anne Hathaway  –  184

Peak Performance:

  • Jessica Chastain  –  2011-15  –  343

note:  Chastain is the only actress to join the 5 year list since 2011 so I thought it was worth noting.  Amy Adams (271 points from 2012-2016) is just off the Top 10 list.

note:  The following several lists I saved for here so that I could include everything through 2018 instead of having to do two versions.  So they reflect the current points.

Top 10 Actresses Who Have Never Won an Oscar

  1. Deborah Kerr
  2. Liv Ullmann
  3. Amy Adams
  4. Sigourney Weaver
  5. Annette Bening
  6. Michelle Pfeiffer
  7. Judy Davis
  8. Jessica Chastain
  9. Isabelle Huppert
  10. Michelle Williams

note:  Julianne Moore would have topped this list in 2011.
note:  Adams, Chastain, Huppert and Williams knocked off Catherine Deneuve, Winona Ryder, Debra Winger and Harriet Andersson.

Top 10 Actresses Who Have Never Been Nominated for an Oscar

  1. Harriet Andersson
  2. Ingrid Thulin
  3. Bibi Andersson
  4. Gong Li
  5. Mia Farrow
  6. Emily Blunt
  7. Zhang Ziyi
  8. Scarlett Johansson
  9. Audrey Tautou
  10. Kay Walsh

note:  Jennifer Jason Leigh, Isabelle Huppert and Charlotte Rampling would have made the pre-2012 version of the list.

Top 10 Years for Actresses

  1. 1934  (Shirley MacLaine  /  Judi Dench  /  Maggie Smith)
  2. 1949  (Meryl Streep  /  Sigourney Weaver  /  Sissy Spacek  /  Jessica Lange)
  3. 1958  (Annette Bening  /  Michelle Pfeiffer  /  Holly Hunter  /  Miranda Richardson)
  4. 1907  (Katharine Hepburn  /  Rosalind Russell  /  Barbara Stanwyck)
  5. 1967  (Nicole Kidman  /  Julia Roberts  /  Emily Watson)
  6. 1908  (Bette Davis  /  Anna Magnani  /  Carole Lombard)
  7. 1975  (Kate Winslet  /  Marion Cotillard  /  Charlize Theron)
  8. 1932  (Harriet Andersson  /  Ellen Burstyn  /  Elizabeth Taylor)
  9. 1960  (Julianne Moore  /  Tilda Swinton  /  Kristin Scott Thomas)
  10. 1946  (Diane Keaton  /  Susan Sarandon  /  Sally Field)

Top 5 Actresses, age 8-12

  1. Anna Paquin  –  60
  2. Sarah Bolger  –  60
  3. Linda Blair  –  52
  4. Ivana Baquero  –  52
  5. Quvenzhané Wallis  –  52

Top 10 Actresses, age 13-19

  1. Winona Ryder  –  173
  2. Natalie Portman  –  142
  3. Saoirse Ronan  –  138
  4. Scarlett Johansson  –  93
  5. Anna Paquin  –  87
  6. Judy Garland  –  83
  7. Christina Ricci  –  81
  8. Thora Birch  –  81
  9. Brigitte Helm  –  75
  10. Emma Watson  –  74

Top 10 Actresses, age 20-29

  1. Kate Winslet  –  484
  2. Jennifer Lawrence  –  347
  3. Kiera Knightley  –  287
  4. Samantha Morton  –  274
  5. Shirley MacLaine  –  270
  6. Teresa Wright  –  242
  7. Ingrid Bergman  –  241
  8. Janet Gaynor  –  236
  9. Zhang Ziyi  –  233
  10. Gwyneth Paltrow  –  232

note:  Jennifer Lawrence won’t be 30 until next year so she could earn more.  Saoirse Ronan is at 209 and she’s got five more years to go so expect her to go flying up this list in the future.

Top 10 Actresses, age 30-39

  1. Cate Blanchett  –  689
  2. Meryl Streep  –  600
  3. Julianne Moore  –  463
  4. Emma Thompson  –  460
  5. Liv Ullmann  –  410
  6. Jessica Chastain  –  387
  7. Bette Davis  –  376
  8. Michelle Pfeiffer  –  365
  9. Amy Adams  –  363
  10. Nicole Kidman  –  355

Top 10 Actresses, age 40-49

  1. Susan Sarandon  –  292
  2. Joan Allen  –  280
  3. Jane Fonda  –  264
  4. Cate Blanchett  –  264
  5. Anna Magnani  –  261
  6. Meryl Streep  –  254
  7. Tilda Swinton  –  233
  8. Katharine Hepburn  –  227
  9. Amy Adams  –  210
  10. Julianne Moore  –  205

note:  Bear in mind that Amy Adams is only 44.

Top 10 Actresses, age 50-59

  1. Meryl Streep  –  399
  2. Annette Bening  –  214
  3. Julianne Moore  –  180
  4. Maggie Smith  –  179
  5. Tilda Swinton  –  172
  6. Helen Mirren  –  158
  7. Sigourney Weaver  –  148
  8. Vanessa Redgrave  –  116
  9. Katharine Hepburn  –  114
  10. Maureen Stapleton  –  112

Top 10 Actresses, age 60-69

  1. Meryl Streep  –  383
  2. Helen Mirren  –  250
  3. Judi Dench  –  224
  4. Marie Dressler  –  143
  5. Katharine Hepburn  –  122
  6. Isabelle Huppert  –  104
  7. Julie Christie  –  92
  8. Ethel Barrymore  –  82
  9. Hermione Gingold  –  75
  10. Jacki Weaver  –  75

Top 5 Actresses, age 70-79

  1. Judi Dench  –  309
  2. Edith Evans  –  158
  3. Ruth Gordon  –  104
  4. Vanessa Redgrave  –  82
  5. May Whitty  –  82

note:  Helen Mirren is at 54 points and is only 73.  Glenn Close at 61 points, is only 71 and will have Sunset Blvd.

Top 5 Actresses, age 80 and above

  1. Emmanuelle Riva  –  70
  2. Jessica Tandy  –  59
  3. June Squibb  –  52
  4. Simone Signoret  –  37
  5. Ruby Dee  –  37

note:  Judi Dench and Maggie Smith (who’s got Downton Abbey coming this year) are both at 35 points so this list could change before too long.

Highest Percentage of Points after the Age of 40 in the Top 100

  1. Judi Dench  –  100%
  2. Viola Davis  –  89.77%
  3. Helen Mirren  –  86.88%
  4. Anna Magnani  –  86.71%
  5. Susan Sarandon  –  85.45%
  6. Joan Allen  –  84.34%
  7. Tilda Swinton  –  83.68%
  8. Ellen Burstyn  –  79.73%
  9. Vanessa Redgrave  –  73.59%
  10. Annette Bening  –  73.48%

Lowest Percentage of Points after the age of 40 in the Top 100

note:  Does not include any actresses born after 1976.  Does not include Natalie Wood who died at age 43.
note:  Because they all have the same percentage, the list is in descending order by total points.
note:  Of this list, Ryder has the best chance for future points.  Sadly, Stranger Things doesn’t count or she would already have them.

  1. Audrey Hepburn  –  0.00%
  2. Renee Zellweger  –  0.00%
  3. Gwyneth Paltrow  –  0.00%
  4. Winona Ryder  –  0.00%
  5. Bibi Andersson  –  0.00%
  6. Janet Gaynor  –  0.00%
  7. Gloria Grahame  –  0.00%
  8. Elizabeth Taylor  –  0.00%
  9. Norma Shearer  –  0.00%
  10. Greta Garbo  –  0.00%

Progressive #1 All-Time by Age

  • age 9:  Quvenzhané Wallis  –  52
  • age 10:  Quvenzhané Walls  /  Linda Blair  –  52
  • age 11-12:  Anna Paquin  /  Sarah Bolger  –  60
  • age 13:  Keisa Castle-Hughes  –  61
  • age 14:  Anna Paquin  –  95
  • age 15:  Natalie Portman  –  Saoirse Ronan  –  112
  • age 16:  Anna Paquin  –  117
  • age 17-18:  Anna Paquin  –  147
  • age 19-20:  Winona Ryder  –  173
  • age 21:  Kate Winslet  /  Saoirse Ronan  –  199
  • age 22:  Kate Winslet  –  234
  • age 23:  Winona Ryder  –  294
  • age 24:  Saoirse Ronan  –  347  (Ronan is 24)
  • age 25:  Winona Ryder  –  364
  • age 26:  Kate Winslet  –  386
  • age 27-28:  Kate Winslet  –  412
  • age 29-30:  Kate Winslet  –  519
  • age 31-32:  Kate Winslet  –  580
  • age 33-35:  Kate Winslet  –  711
  • age 36:  Kate Winslet  –  728
  • age 37:  Cate Blanchett  –  739
  • age 38-43:  Cate Blanchett  –  851
  • age 44-45:  Cate Blanchett  –  929
  • age 46-47:  Cate Blanchett  –  1048
  • age 48:  Cate Blanchett  –  1070
  • age 49-54:  Cate Blanchett  –  1115  (Blanchett is 49)
  • age 55:  Meryl Streep  –  1122
  • from age 55 and up it’s Meryl Streep in ever-increasing amounts

note:  Bette Davis doesn’t enter the Top 10 until age 31.  Katharine Hepburn doesn’t enter the Top 10 until age 48.
note:  Even though Kate Winslet won’t be 44 until later this year, she stays in the #2 spot all the way through age 48.

Progressive #1 All-TIme by Year

  • 1928:  Lilian Gish  –  192
  • 1929-36:  Lilian Gish  –  253
  • 1937-38:  Janet Gaynor  –  297
  • 1939:  Bette Davis  –  315
  • 1940:  Bette Davis  –  376
  • 1941:  Bette Davis  –  437
  • 1942:  Bette Davis  –  481
  • 1943:  Bette Davis  –  525
  • 1944:  Bette Davis  –  560
  • 1945-48:  Bette Davis  –  595
  • 1949:  Bette Davis  –  612
  • 1950-51:  Bette Davis  –  690
  • 1952-60:  Bette Davis  –  725
  • 1961:  Bette Davis  –  751
  • 1962-63:  Bette Davis  –  786
  • 1964-67:  Bette Davis  –  812
  • 1968-80:  Katharine Hepburn  –  842
  • 1981-97:  Katharine Hepburn  –  877
  • since 1997, Meryl Streep, in ever increasing amounts


The Updates


Without re-typing the whole 100 again, I will just cover major movements and actresses who have entered the list since 2011.  Everyone below 233 points has been knocked off the list.

This first list are actresses who moved up enough to merit listing them and their new point total.  It’s not everyone who moved up (which is why if you try to total the lists it might not work) but those who earned a significant amount of points since 2011.  I will also list below them, their new point total and any awards or nominations they have earned since 2011 and notes including their best performance if it came since 2011.

#68  –  Charlize Theron

306 points
Globe nom, 2 BFCA noms
Theron has shown she is equally adept in really heavy Drama (Mad Max: Fury Road) and Comedy (Tully).

#59  –  Toni Collette

331 points
BFCA nom
Collete’s rise in points comes from the film Hereditary.

#49  –  Glenn Close

356 points
Globe, SAG, BFCA
Oscar nom, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Close finally won some awards for The Wife but in the end failed to win the Oscar.  She comes in fourth at the Nighthawks in a very strong Top 5.  If she’s as good in the upcoming film version of Sunset Blvd. as she won on stage in the role, she’s got more points coming.

#46 – Jennifer Jason Leigh

366 points
Oscar nom, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Though Leigh is always good the rise in her points (and all the awards) is entirely attributable to The Hateful Eight.

#40  –  Julia Roberts

405 points
Oscar nom, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Best Performance:  August: Osage County
The awards are all for the same film, her career best performance in August: Osage County but there’s also solid work in Money Monster and Ben is Back.

#39  –  Holly Hunter

406 points
BFCA nom, SAG nom
After a long time away (including time on television), Hunter finally returned to the awards hunt with The Big Sick in 2017.

#37  –  Naomi Watts  –  419

419 points
Oscar nom, Globe nom, 2 SAG noms, BFCA nom, NH nom
While doing strong supporting work in films like Birdman and St. Vincent, the majority of her nominations and points come from her performance in The Impossible.

#35  –  Michelle Williams

421 points
Oscar nom, 2 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Williams again won the Consensus but not the Oscar in 2016 for Manchester by the Sea (I almost want to declare a tie between her and Davis but Williams just barely doesn’t win the Nighthawk – she might have won both awards if she had been in the film more) and earned another Globe nom for All the Money in the World.

#33 –  Isabelle Huppert

445 points
Oscar nom, Globe nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Best Performance:  Elle
Well, the awards finally discovered Huppert with her magnificent performance in Elle though she has also earned some points here for Amour and The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby.

#32  –  Natalie Portman

448 points
Oscar nom, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, 2 BFCA noms
Portman’s work would be pretty light in the first few years after her Oscar but then she returned to all the awards with Jackie as well as doing strong work last year in both Annihilation and Vox Lux.

#30  –  Juliette Binoche

449 points
Though she hasn’t earned any more award nominations in films like Camille Claudel 1915 and Clouds of Sils Maria she has continued to move up the list.

#27  –  Frances McDormand

480 points
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, SAG, BFCA
Oscar nom, Globe nom, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
I may not have liked Three Billboards but there’s no denying that Fran is great in it; easily her best performance since 2000 if not 1996.

#25  –  Jane Fonda

482 points
Globe nom
After only making two films between 1990 and 2011, Fonda returned to acting and proved that she’s still good.  With supporting roles in This is Where I Leave You and Youth and a lead role in Our Souls at Night, she might not be at her peak, but she’s still damn good.

#24  –  Tilda Swinton

484 points
BFCA nom
Still lacking in Nighthawk noms, she scored another Top 10 finish for Snowpiercer and earned points as well for Hail Caesar.

#19  –  Annette Bening

528 points
Globe nom, BAFTA nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Bening has hit two really strong Best Actress fields in 2016 and 2017 which is the only explanation that she was passed over for 20th Century Women and Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, two more magnificent performances that show that she’s not even close to slowing down and eventually she will win an Oscar.  The latter performance is especially appropriate because I can totally see Gloria Grahame playing Myra in The Grifters.

#16  –  Amy Adams

573 points
2 Globes, LAFC, NSFC, CFC, NBR
3 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, 5 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Arrival
In spite of the two Globes and the critics awards, Adams has continued to be the perennial awards bridesmaid and she is now third in Oscar points for an actress without an Oscar behind only Glenn Close and Deborah Kerr.  She has been the best actress at work since 2012 with The Master, American Hustle, Big Eyes, Arrival, Nocturnal Animals and Vice.  To give an idea of how good she is, she stays in the All-Time Top 10 when going by age instead of years all the way through the age of 59 even though she is just 44.

#15  –  Maggie Smith

578 points
2 Globe noms, BAFTA nom

She did solid work in 2012 in both The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and Quartet and earned BAFTA and Globe noms in 2015 for The Lady in the Van.  Most of all, she continues to be an international treasure.  With the Downton Abbey film set for release this fall, will she hit the awards circuit again?

#12  –  Judi Dench

620 points
Oscar nom, 2 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Philomena
Dame Judi hasn’t slowed down in the slightest, now passing her good friend Maggie Smith.  She nows has more points after the age of 60 than all but 15 other actresses have at all.  Meryl Streep is the only other actress within 250 points of her beyond the age of 60 and even Meryl is close to 200 points behind her (though, also 15 years younger, so she has time).

#11  –  Helen Mirren

625 points
4 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 3 SAG noms, BFCA nom
Mirren is now one of just five actresses to earn at least 80 points in four different decades, having far exceeded that this decade, adding Hitchcock, The Hundred-Foot Journey, Woman in Gold and Trumbo to her ever-growing resume.  Her two 2018 films (Winchester, Nutcracker) may have sucked but she’s got The Good Liar coming up.

#8  –  Nicole Kidman

706 points
Oscar nom, 3 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms
This is where Kidman has ended up even before I have seen Destroyer.  But, since 2012, she was good in the terrible Paperboy and has had a very good last three years (Lion, Beguiled, Boy Erased).

#7  –  Julianne Moore

848 points
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, SAG, BFCA, CFC, NBR
Oscar nom, 2 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Since 2011, of course, Moore won the Oscar (and numerous other awards) for Still Alice but she also has done solid support in Don Jon and great work in the not good Maps to the Stars.

#6  –  Kate Winslet

849 points
Globe, BAFTA
Oscar nom, 2 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
After the longest gap of her career with no points (2012-14), she’s returned with A Little Chaos, Steve Jobs, The Dressmaker and The Mountain Between Us.  Just think of how many points she has, having almost caught Bette Davis and she’s still just 43 years old!

#4  –  Emma Thompson

865 points
Globe nom, BAFTA nom, SAG nom, BFCA nom, NH nom
Thompson did great work in Saving Mr. Banks but she actually been passed by Moore and Winslet until The Children Act pushed her past both and Bette Davis as well.

#2  –  Cate Blanchett

1115 points
2 Oscar noms, 2 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Blue Jasmine
Of course, all the awards are for Blue Jasmine as she dominated the awards that year but she also wins the Nighthawk for an amazing performance in Carol.  But she’s also been good in Truth, Cinderella, Thor: Ragnarok, Ocean’s 8 and The House with a Clock in Its Walls.  She’s also got Where’d You Go Bernadette later this year (a review of the book can be found here) and remember, she won’t even be 50 until next month.  When Meryl turned 50, she only (only, hah!) had 932 points.

#1  –  Meryl Streep

1688 points

4 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, BAFTA nom, 3 BFCA noms, 3 SAG noms, 2 NH noms
She just never stops.  She’s had more Oscar nominations since 2011 than Myrna Loy, Jean Arthur, Carole Lombard and Marlene Dietrich combined for their whole careers.  What has she done after turning 62?  Just August: Osage County, Into the Woods, Florence Foster Jenkins and The Post.  She’s in her 60’s and she’s earned enough points since 2011 to actually make the list without any of the points she already had.  Oh, and she’s going to be in Little Women this Christmas.

Actresses who are new to the list since 2011


Five Actresses to Watch For, moving up the list

  1. Sandra Bullock  –  207
  2. Scarlett Johansson  –  191
  3. Octavia Spencer  –  179
  4. Reese Witherspoon  –  174
  5. Rooney Mara  –  171

#100  –  Kristin Scott Thomas

233 points
b. 1960, English
Oscar nom, 2 Globe noms, 5 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  I’ve Loved You So Long
Though I would later see her in earlier works, the first thing I ever saw her in was Framed, one of the very first HBO original movies.  I would first start paying attention to her in Four Weddings (where she is brilliant), noticed how gorgeous she was in Mission: Impossible and the Oscars noticed her in The English Patient.  Since then, the BAFTAs at least have noticed her in I’ve Loved You So Long, Nowhere Boy and Darkest Hour (the film that pushes her into the Top 100).

#98  –  Viola Davis

235 points
b. 1965, American
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, 2 SAG, 2 BFCA, NH
3 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  Fences
Viola Davis would slowly work her way up through Soderbergh films, first catching my attention in Solaris.  After that would be her Oscar nomination for Doubt, her Oscar nomination for The Help (winning SAG), her magnificent powerhouse performance in Fences that won her the Oscar and then her sly, dominating performance in Widows, pushing her onto the list.

#94  –  Rachel Weisz

249 points
b. 1970, English
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, SAG, NYFC
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Favourite
Another actress who was merely beautiful in her first roles (especially in Mummy Returns) but then broke through with acting, winning the Oscar for The Constant Gardener.  Since then, she was mostly unrewarded for The Fountain, Lovely Bones, Deep Blue Sea and Disobedience but returned to the awards circuit with her amazing performance in The Favourite.

#92  –  Sally Hawkins

255 points
b. 1976, English
Globe, NYFC, LAFC (twice), NSFC (twice), BSFC (twice)
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, BFCA nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  The Shape of Water
The critics love her (even though the LAFC have been around since 1975 she’s one of just four actresses to win the LAFC twice and the NSFC twice) but the awards groups were slowly to come around.  Still, she was brilliant in Happy-Go-Lucky and The Shape of Water and really good in Made in Dagenham and Blue Jasmine and it seems like there’s a lot more to come.

#90  –  Emily Blunt

260 points
b. 1983, English
5 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 2 BFCA noms, NH nom
Best Performance:  Mary Poppins Returns
Until this year, Blunt didn’t yet have a Nighthawk nom but that’s okay because she still doesn’t have an Oscar nom.  She’ll get one soon.  She first garnered attention for The Devil Wears Prada and then The Young Victoria before really breaking through this decade with Salmon Fishing on the Yemen, Into the Woods, Sicario, The Woman on the Train and her 2018 double whammy of Mary Poppins Returns and A Quiet Place.

#81  –  Emma Stone

286 points
b. 1988, American
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, SAG, BSFC, 3 NH
3 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, 3 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 4 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Birdman
Stone isn’t just her three best performances – there is also Easy A, Magic in the Moonlight, Irrational Man and Battle of the Sexes.  But her three best performances (Birdman, La La Land, The Favourite and it’s hard to decide which is the best of the three) are so incredible that they have managed to win her three Nighthawk awards by the age of 30.

#70  –  Kiera Knightley

304 points
b. 1985, English
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 BFCA noms, SAG nom, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Atonement
If you only think of Knightley as the beauty in the Pirates movies (“you like her because she resembles Natalie Portman” V said to me after leaving the first one, neither of us realizing she had been Natalie’s decoy in Phantom Menace) then you’re not thinking of her Oscar nominated work in Pride & Prejudice or The Imitation Game or her Nighthawk nominated work in Atonement and Anna Karenina or her work in The Duchess, Begin Again and Colette.

#65  –  Carey Mulligan

321 points
b. 1985, English
Oscar nom, Globe nom, 2 BAFTA noms, SAG nom, BFCA nom, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  An Education
She played Keira’s younger sister in Pride & Prejudice even though she’s just two months younger than her.  Though she doesn’t have as many Nighthawk nominations (An Education, Shame) as her screen sister, she’s got more solid acting in bulk (Never Let Me Go, Drive, Inside Llewyn Davis, Far from the Madding Crowd, Suffragette, Mudbound) even though she’s only been in 16 films so far (and my favorite Doctor Who episode).

#56  –  Anne Hathaway

333 points
b. 1982, American
Oscar, NH
2 Oscar noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  Les Miserables
Hathaway had already been rising up the list by 2011 with 149 points from the likes of Ella Enchanted, Brokeback Mountain, Rachel Getting Married and Love & Other Drugs.  Then came her fantastic 2012 (Les Miserables and The Dark Knight Rises) which has been followed by solid performances in Interstellar and Colossal.

#53  –  Saoirse Ronan

347 points
b. 1994, American born to Irish parents
Globe, NYFC (twice), CFC, NH
3 Oscars noms, 3 Globe noms, 4 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 3 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Lady Bird
The second actress above Knightley to have played her younger sister on-screen.  Another actress mostly defined by her three best performances (in this case Atonement, Brooklyn and Lady Bird) but her other work (Hanna, Lovely Bones, Byzantium, Mary Queen of Scots, On Chesil Beach) is enough to push her considerably higher than Stone.  She’s the youngest actress on the list by several years and that’s she already when she’s about to turn 25 is astounding.

#52  –  Jennifer Lawrence

347 points
b. 1990, American
Oscar, 3 Globes, BAFTA, SAG, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC, NBR
4 Oscar noms, 4 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 3 SAG noms, 4 BFCA noms, 4 NH noms
Best Performance:  American Hustle
Lawrence was just 20 years old when Winter’s Bone was released and launched her into stardom and the awards races.  Since then, she’s only won an Oscar (Silver Linings Playbook), earned three nominations in four years (either Winter’s Bone, Silver Linings, American Hustle or replace Winter’s Bone with Joy) and given solid performances in each of the last three years as well (Passengers, mother!, Red Sparrow).  All of that and she won’t be 30 for another year and a half.

#45  –  Marion Cotillard

370 points
b. 1975, French
Oscar, Globe, BAFTA, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC, BSFC (twice), NH
2 Oscar noms, 3 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 4 BFCA noms, 2 NH noms
Best Performance:  La Vie en Rose
Like the other French actresses, much more appreciated in her home country (2 Cesars, 7 noms) though the Oscars have also noticed her.  While she’s only earned Nighthawk noms for La Vie en Rose (the win) and Two Days One Night, that’s more just luck because her resume is stacked: A Very Long Engagement, Nine, Inception, Rust and Bone, The Dark Knight Rises, The Immigrant, It’s Only the End of the World, From the Land of the Moon).

#31  –  Jessica Chastain

448 points
b. 1977, American
Globe, BFCA, NYFC, LAFC, NSFC, CFC (twice), NBR (twice), NH
2 Oscar noms, 5 Globe noms, 2 BAFTA noms, 2 SAG noms, 4 BFCA noms, 3 NH noms
Best Performance:  Zero Dark Thirty
Chastain exploded onto the scene in 2011 winning one of her critics awards for an astounding six films (Tree of Life, The Help, Take Shelter, Corialanus, The Debt, Texas Killing Fields) and that was all before she gave her career best performance the next year in Zero Dark Thirty.  She only followed that up with another massive year in 2014 (The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby, Miss Julie, A Most Violent Year) then earned Globe noms for both Miss Sloane and Molly’s Game.  It’s worth noting that she’s one of only five actresses to have multiple years with more than 120 points and that the other four are in all in the Top 10 (Streep, Blanchett, Moore, Thompson).