The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

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This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Emma Watson

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Famous As: Actress, Activist

Birthdate: April 15, 1990

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: Paris, France

English actress, model, and activist, Emma Watson first gained prominence as a child artiste in the Harry Potter film series. The daughter of lawyers, she was determined to go to college despite her busy acting career and graduated from Brown University. A staunch feminist, she is actively involved with organizations that work for the betterment of women.

 2 Audrey Hepburn

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Famous As: Film actress

Birthdate: May 4, 1929

Sun Sign: Taurus

Birthplace: Ixelles, Belgium

Died: January 20, 1993

British actress Audrey Hepburn is counted among the greatest female screen legends in Golden Age Hollywood. Rising to prominence in the 1950s, she became one of the few people to win Academy, Emmy, Grammy, and Tony Awards. She devoted much of her time in her later life to UNICEF and was actively involved in humanitarian work.

 3 Emilia Clarke

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: October 23, 1986

Sun Sign: Libra

Birthplace: London, England

Emilia Clarke rose to fame with the television series Game of Thrones, which garnered her international recognition and won her several awards. She has also starred in many films like Solo: A Star Wars Story and was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2019. Emilia also supports several charitable organisations. 

 4 Kate Winslet

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: October 5, 1975

Sun Sign: Libra

Birthplace: Reading, Berkshire, England, United Kingdom

Actress Kate Winslet’s most enduring character remains that of the protagonist in the 1997 blockbuster film Titanic, which made her an international star. She’s also known for doing period roles in films like Sense and Sensibility, Jude and Hamlet. Some of her other notable films are Iris, Little Children, Steve Jobs and The Reader. She won an Oscar for her performance in The Reader

 5 Millie Bobby Brown

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: February 19, 2004

Sun Sign: Pisces

Birthplace: Marbella, Spain

Millie Bobby Brown, the English actress and model, rose to prominence after acting in the TV series Stranger Things and then in the film, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, in 2019. She was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine in April 2018, making her the youngest person ever to be so.

 6 Emily Blunt

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: February 23, 1983

Sun Sign: Pisces

Birthplace: Roehampton, London, United Kingdom

Often featured among the ‘Sexiest’ and ‘Most Desirable’ women in the world, this British-born actress is a Hollywood A-lister and sex-symbol who first captured everyone’s attention with her scene-stealing appearance in the Meryl Streep starrer The Devil Wears Prada. Emily Blunt has since tasted both commercial and critical success, and is married with kids to The Office actor, John Krasinski.

 7 Helena Bonham Carter

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: May 26, 1966

Sun Sign: Gemini

Birthplace: Islington, London, England

Helena Bonham Carter is an English actress who is known for her performances in independent films and huge blockbusters. Some of her notable films are The Wings of the Dove, The King’s Speech, Hamlet, Howards End, Fight Club, Les Misérables . She was also part of the Harry Potter series. She was bestowed with the Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2012.

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 8 Kate Beckinsale

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: July 26, 1973

Sun Sign: Leo

Birthplace: Finsbury Park, London

Kate Beckinsale is an English actress and model and has worked in films such as Pearl Harbor, Serendipity, The Aviator, Contraband and Total Recall and received critical acclaim for her performance in the film Love and Friendship. She has also worked in various stage and radio productions. The British Heart Foundation is one of the charities that she promotes.

 9 Keira Knightley

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: March 26, 1985

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: Teddington

British actress Keira Knightley’s career took a huge turn, when she appeared in Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace and Bend It Like Beckham, while she was still in her teens. Since then, she has displayed her talent in numerous period and big budget movie including Pirates of the Caribbean film series, Pride and Prejudice and Imitation Game.

 10 Lily James

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: April 5, 1989

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: Esher

English actress, Lily James, was born into a family of prominent actors and developed an early interest in performing. She studied acting and made her debut as a TV actress in the early 2010s. Since then, she has become a popular face in Hollywood as well, having appeared in many hit films. She is the recipient of many awards. 

 11 Rachel Weisz

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: March 7, 1970

Sun Sign: Pisces

Birthplace: Westminster, United Kingdom

One of the most popular and decorated British-American actresses, Rachel Weisz is the recipient of many awards, such as the Academy Award. One of the most beautiful actresses, she has been featured on several magazine covers. In 2010, Rachel Weisz was named the global ambassador for L’Oréal. She has also served as fashion designer Narciso Rodriguez’s muse.

 12 Daisy Ridley

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: April 10, 1992

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: Westminster, United Kingdom

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Known as Rey from the Star Wars sequel trilogy, Daisy Ridley began her career with Lifesaver, a BAFTA-nominated short film. She has also played significant roles in Ophelia and Murder on the Orient Express. She has shared her struggle with endometriosis and her support for anti-gun campaigns, on social media.

 13 Elizabeth Taylor

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Birthdate: February 27, 1932

Sun Sign: Pisces

Birthplace: Hampstead

Died: March 23, 2011

Considered an incandescent beauty, Elizabeth Taylor was a very popular and successful actor and her legacy is an everlasting one. She shone in movies like A Place in the Sun, Giant, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Cleopatra, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf and Butterfield 8 in the 1950s and 60s. Recipient of two Oscars, she married eight times.

 14 Helen Mirren

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: July 26, 1945

Sun Sign: Leo

Birthplace: Chiswick, London

Helen Mirren is one of the most respected and decorated actresses from England. She has won several prestigious awards, including the Triple Crown of Acting. Before achieving greatness, Mirren fought drug addiction during her 20s. She has also said that she is a naturist at heart and was named by British Naturism as Naturist of the Year in 2004.

 15 Lena Headey

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actor, Voice actor

Birthdate: October 3, 1973

Sun Sign: Libra

Birthplace: Bermuda

 16 Julie Andrews

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: October 1, 1935

Sun Sign: Libra

Birthplace: Walton-on-Thames, United Kingdom

A distinguished films, television and Broadway actress, Julie Andrews is best known for her performances in films like Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music, Thoroughly Modern Millie and Victor/Victoria. She has also done voiceovers for animation movie like Despicable Me and Enchanted. The legendary actress has also released multiple albums and authored numerous children’s books as well as her autobiography.

 17 Angela Lansbury

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: October 16, 1925

Sun Sign: Libra

Birthplace: Regent’s Park, London, England

Angela Lansbury played a key role in shaping the Golden Age of Hollywood. Recognized as one of the few stars still alive from the Golden Age of Hollywood cinema, Angela Lansbury has received accolades, such as an Honorary Oscar. In 2014, Queen Elizabeth II appointed her a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

 18 Rosamund Pike

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: January 27, 1979

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Birthplace: Hammersmith, London

Popular English actress, Rosamund Pike, is best known for her performances in the movies Gone Girl, Hostiles, An Education and A Private War. A talented stage actress, she shot to international fame with her debut film Die Another Day. Since then, she has appeared in diverse roles and has achieved both critical and commercial success as well as prestigious award nominations.

 19 Maggie Smith

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: December 28, 1934

Sun Sign: Capricorn

Birthplace: Ilford, Essex

Veteran English actress, Maggie Smith, has an extensive career spanning almost seven decades. One of Britain’s most recognizable actresses, she has appeared in more than 60 films and over 70 plays. Making her debut as a stage actress in the 1950s, she quickly moved on to TV and cinema. She has been honored with the Stratford Shakespeare Festival’s Legacy Award.

 20 Olivia de Havilland

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: July 1, 1916

Sun Sign: Cancer

Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

Died: July 26, 2020

The veteran actress of Hollywood’s Golden Age, Olivia de Havilland shot to fame with Gone With the Wind and later established her cinematic career with movies like To Each His Own and The Heiress. Her rivalry with her sister and the court battle against a powerful studio also made headlines.

 21 Naomi Watts

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: September 28, 1968

Sun Sign: Libra

Birthplace: Shoreham

One of the most beautiful actresses of her generation, Naomi Watts has been featured in the world’s most beautiful women lists by magazines like Maxim and People. Also a well-known philanthropist, Watts is associated with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS) as its goodwill ambassador. She uses her fame to help people suffering from AIDS.

 22 Emma Thompson

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: April 15, 1959

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: Paddington, London, United Kingdom

One of the most celebrated British actresses, Emma Thompson has received plaudits for her work in films, television and stage. Her film credits include Howards End, The Remains of the Day as well as Sense and Sensibility which she also wrote. Her television appearances include miniseries Angels in America. The award winning actress is also an author, activist and comedian.

 23 Karen Gillan

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: November 28, 1987

Sun Sign: Sagittarius

Birthplace: Inverness, Scotland

Karen Gillan is one of the most popular and successful actresses from Scotland. She is best known for playing Nebula and Ruby Roundhouse in the Marvel Cinematic Universe films and Jumanji film series respectively. Also a filmmaker, she wrote and directed The Party’s Just Beginning, apart from acting in the film. She is also a philanthropist.

 24 Felicity Jones

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: October 17, 1983

Sun Sign: Libra

Birthplace: Birmingham

English actress Felicity Jones started her career as a child and went on to take up more mature roles as a teenager. One of her uncles is an actor, and he influenced her to take up the profession herself. She appeared in many TV shows in the initial years of her career before venturing into films as well.

 25 Tilda Swinton

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: November 5, 1960

Sun Sign: Scorpio

Birthplace: London

One of the most popular Scottish actresses of her generation, Tilda Swinton is known for portraying negative roles in both blockbusters and independent arthouse films. An Academy Award-winning actress, Tilda is also known for her impressive fashion sense; she was named by The Guardian as one of the fifty best-dressed over 50 in 2013.

 26 Olivia Colman

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: January 30, 1974

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Birthplace: Norwich, Norfolk, England, UK

 27 Judi Dench

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: December 9, 1934

Sun Sign: Sagittarius

Birthplace: Heworth, York, United Kingdom

Judi Dench is one of the most respected and decorated English actresses of all time. Counted among the most influential people in the United Kingdom, Dame Judi Dench is a patron of more than 180 charities, such as York Against Cancer. Since 1985, she has been serving as the president of Questors Theatre.

 28 Vivien Leigh

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: November 5, 1913

Sun Sign: Scorpio

Birthplace: Darjeeling, Bengal Presidency, British India

Died: July 8, 1967

British actress Vivien Leigh gained popularity with her award winning performance in films Gone with the Wind and A Street Car named Desire and her Musical Broadway Tovarich. The beautiful actress, who went on to feature in films like That Hamilton Woman and Ship of Fools, had a troubled personal life and suffered from physical and mental health issues.

 29 Natalie Dormer

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: February 11, 1982

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Birthplace: Reading, Berkshire, United Kingdom

Natalie Dormer is a popular English actress who received international recognition after playing Margaery Tyrell in one of the most popular TV series of all time, Game of Thrones. Also known for her charity work and advocacy, Natalie traveled to Tanzania in 2017 along with a humanitarian organization called Plan International to ban child marriage in the East African country.

 30 Christina Hendricks

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: May 3, 1975

Sun Sign: Taurus

Birthplace: Knoxville, Tennessee, United States

 31 Gemma Chan

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: November 29, 1982

Sun Sign: Sagittarius

Birthplace: London, England, UK

 32 Maisie Williams

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: April 15, 1997

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: Bristol, England

English actress Maisie Williams shot to international fame with her debut role as Arya Stark in HBO’s medieval fantasy epic series Game of Thrones. She continued to entertain audience in the successive seasons of the series. Simultaneously, she has appeared in other projects like the movies, The Falling, The New Mutants , and the TV series, Doctor Who.

 33 Jenna Coleman

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: April 27, 1986

Sun Sign: Taurus

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Birthplace: Blackpool, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom

Jenna Coleman is an English actress who played Queen Victoria in the historical TV drama series Victoria. Also known for her charity work, Jenna Coleman serves as an ambassador for a charity organization called Place2Be, which provides therapeutic and emotional services in schools. She also serves as an ambassador for One To One Children’s Fund, which raises awareness of HIV.

 34 Anya Chalotra

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: 1996 AD

Birthplace: Wolverhampton

Anya Chalotra is best known for her roles as Yennefer of Vengerberg in Netflix’s The Witcher and Robin Loxley in Sherwood. She was also seen in Wanderlust and The ABC Murders. She appeared as Dr. Anuja in a 2020 TV short named No Masks, about COVID-19 frontline workers in London.

 35 Thandie Newton

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: November 6, 1972

Sun Sign: Scorpio

Birthplace: Westminster, London, England, United Kingdom

A critically acclaimed and award-winning actress, Thandie Newton is also an activist—she led a flash mob in 2013 for gender equality and justice. An actress with an affinity for Buddhism, Thandie was named Sexiest Vegan of 2014 by PETA. During the 2019 New Year Honours, she was appointed OBE for services to charity and film.

 36 Florence Pugh

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: January 3, 1996

Sun Sign: Capricorn

Birthplace: Oxford, Oxfordshire, England, UK

 37 Sienna Rose Miller

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: December 28, 1981

Sun Sign: Capricorn

Birthplace: New York City

Sienna Rose Miller is a British-American actress. From being a photography model, who posed topless for Pirelli calendar, to becoming a prominent actress in the American film and TV industry, Miller’s journey has been quite inspirational so far. Also known for her charity work, Miller touched the lives of many when she traveled to Haiti after the 2010 Haiti earthquake.

 38 Rebecca Hall

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: May 3, 1982

Sun Sign: Taurus

Birthplace: London, England, UK

 39 Vanessa Kirby

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: April 18, 1988

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: London, England

English actress, Vanessa Kirby, catapulted to fame as Princess Margaret in the Netflix historical drama series The Crown. The success brought her big films like Mission: Impossible –Fallout. However, Venessa has been a known stage and screen actress for quite some time. Her profile include A Streetcar Named Desire (play), The Frankenstein Chronicles (television series) and Great Expectations (BBC miniseries).

 40 Gemma Arterton

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: February 2, 1986

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Birthplace: Gravesend

“Bond Girl” Strawberry Fields from Quantum of Solace, Gemma Arterton began her career on stage and later appeared in Prince of Persia and Clash of the Titans. Her production company creates female-centric content. The Harper’s Bazaar Woman of the Year-winner has supported campaigns such as ERA 50:50, MeToo, and Time’sUp

 41 Vanessa Redgrave

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: January 30, 1937

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Birthplace: Greenwich

 42 Diana Rigg

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: July 20, 1938

Sun Sign: Cancer

Birthplace: Doncaster, Yorkshire, England, UK

 43 Naomi Campbell

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Famous As: Model

Birthdate: May 22, 1970

Sun Sign: Gemini

Birthplace: Streatham

Naomi Campbell is one of the “Big Six” supermodels of the 1980s and the 1990s, who has graced both the ramp and print. She has also released a music album, been part of a fashion reality show, started a web series, and founded charitable organizations such as Fashion for Relief.

 44 Emma Mackey

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: January 4, 1996

Sun Sign: Capricorn

Birthplace: Le Mans

French-British actor Emma Mackey is best known for her portrayal of Maeve Wiley in the Netflix series Sex Education. Some of her upcoming projects include Emily Brontë’s biopic and the thriller Death on the Nile. She has also appeared in the TV projects Badger Lane and Summit Fever.

 45 Hayley Atwell

The Greatest British Actresses Every Geek Will Recognize

Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: April 5, 1982

Sun Sign: Aries

Birthplace: London, England, UK

 46 Jane Seymour

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Birthdate: February 15, 1951

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Birthplace: Hayes, Middlesex, England, UK

Jane Seymour is a British-American actress who was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire for service to drama. Over the years, Seymour has also played a major role as a celebrity ambassador for a national non-profit organization called Childhelp, which works towards helping victims of child abuse and neglect.

 47 Minnie Driver

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: January 31, 1970

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Birthplace: Marylebone, United Kingdom

Minnie Driver is best known for her Academy Award-nominated role of Skylar in Good Will Hunting. She is also known for her supporting roles in the films Circle of Friends and Take and the series Speechless, About a Boy, and Will & Grace. She is a jazz musician, too. 

 48 Joan Collins

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: May 23, 1933

Sun Sign: Gemini

Birthplace: Paddington, London, United Kingdom

Joan Collins, sister of renowned author Jackie Collins, is best known for her Golden Globe-winning role of Alexis Carrington in Dynasty, an iconic soap of the 1980s. She has also written several books, including beauty books, memoirs, and novels. A seasoned theater actor, she also received the DBE and OBE.

 49 Charlotte Riley

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: December 29, 1981

Sun Sign: Capricorn

Birthplace: Grindon, County Durham, England

Charlotte Riley is an English actress who started hogging the limelight after her wedding to popular English actor Tom Hardy. Charlotte Riley is credited with helping Tom Hardy get back on his feet after the latter’s separation from his then-girlfriend Rachael Speed.

 50 Kaya Scodelario

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Famous As: Actress

Birthdate: March 13, 1992

Sun Sign: Pisces

Birthplace: Haywards Heath, West Sussex

Kaya Scodelario was adored as Effy Stonem in Skins. She was also seen in Clash of the Titans, the Maze Runner movies, and Ted Bundy’s biopic Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile. One of FHM‘s World’s Sexiest Women, Kaya has dyslexia and was a vocal supporter of the #MeToo movement.

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