Beauty and talent are not two things that often go hand-in-hand, but there have been a select number of individuals, both male and female, to defy the odds and be the total package. These rare individuals have the acting skills and the beautiful looks to captivate viewers on multiple levels – making their films a stellar viewing experience as a result. While there have been a fair share of beautiful women to have won an Academy Award, these 15 defy beauty standards, and are in a league of their own.
This is not to say that others who have had the honor of winning an Academy Award aren’t beautiful. Every person walking this planet lives life as they see fit, and has a completely different perception of beauty than the person next to them. This list is comprised of actresses that I find to be more beautiful than most of their contemporaries. Looking through the lists of Academy Award winners throughout history, it is truly impressive to feast my eyes on all of the talent that has graced the big screen.
The names on this list come from various countries, and from various walks of life. They are all unique in their own wonderful way – and yet they have one particular thing in common. They all happen to be beautiful individuals who have delivered incredible performances in their respective film roles, and were recognized as Academy Award winners. So, join us, as we list The 15 Most Beautiful Actresses To Have Won An Oscar.
15. Brie Larson, Best Actress (2015)
As it stands, Brie Larson is one of the hottest actresses in all of Hollywood, but let’s pump the brakes on calling her an overnight sensation. Prior to her Academy Award win for her role in Room, Larson has already put together an impressive resume appearing in such films as 13 Going on 30, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, and 21 Jump Street. The Sacramento, CA born actress also appeared in a few notable television shows, including United States of Tara, and The League.
Given her success and talent, it only seemed like a matter of time before she would find critical acclaim, and in 2015, she delivered a performance in a league of its own. Larson took home the Academy Award for Best Actress, and put the world on notice. With two movies on tap for 2017 (including Kong: Skull Island), it’s an exciting time for the actress and for viewers alike.
14. Kim Basinger, Best Supporting Actress (1997)
Even before she began to star in films and wow audiences with her stellar acting chops, Kim Basinger was a highly successful fashion model who had people everywhere dying to see more. After finding success in a number of movies in the early 1980’s, Basinger’s star reached mile high status when she co-starred in 1989’s Batman as Vicki Vale. But, less than a decade later, the actress would find herself in the midst of true critical praise.
In 1997, Basinger co-starred in the crime thriller L.A. Confidential to great financial success, and to much acclaim. For her portrayal of Lynn Bracken, Basinger won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and left her permanent mark on Hollywood. In 2002, the actress appeared in the hip-hop classic 8 Mile, and delivered a great performance that seemed to revive her career. Basinger has continued to act in films throughout her career, and will be appearing in Fifty Shades Darker in 2017.
13. Jane Fonda, Best Actress (1971, 1978)
Since its inception in 1927, there have only been 13 actresses to have won multiple Academy Awards for Best Actress. The 1970s were rather kind to the ageless Jane Fonda who hauled in the coveted award in both 1971 for her role in Klute, and again in 1978 for her role in Coming Home. In total, Fonda has been nominated a staggering 6 times, and has also won an Emmy Award, two BAFTA Awards, and a grand total of four Golden Globe Awards.
In the prime of her career, Fonda was one of the most gorgeous women in Hollywood, and had the talent to maintain a high level of success for so many years. Fonda’s illustrious 56 year career has been masterful, and the actress has quite the history of political activism. She continues to act today, and is currently the star of the Netflix series Grace and Frankie, which has been renewed for a third season.
12. Jennifer Lawrence, Best Actress (2012)
Arguably the biggest actress on the planet at the moment, Jennifer Lawrence has had a spectacular career, despite being just 26 years old. She’s the anchor of two separate Hollywood blockbuster franchises in X: Men and The Hunger Games, and has found critical acclaim in most movies that she has found herself in. Currently the highest-paid actress in Hollywood, Lawrence appears to be onto bigger and better things, which is crazy considering all that she has accomplished already.
In 2012, the actress starred in Silver Linings Playbook, and won an Academy Award for her performance in the film. Just one year later, Lawrence would find herself being nominated for another Academy Award, this time for Best Supporting Actress, for her role in American Hustle. In 2017, the actress will star in Darren Aronofsky’s newest film Mother along with Javier Bardem and Michelle Pfeiffer. Needless to say, the world will be waiting patiently to see what the brilliant actress will deliver this time.
11. Sandra Bullock, Best Actress (2009)
In the early 1990s Sandra Bullock came onto the Hollywood scene in a major way, and kicked off a career that still burns red hot to this day. After several movies that fell flat, Bullock nailed back-to-back roles in 1993’s Demolition Man, and then in 1994’s Speed. Both movies were wildly successful financially, and help catapult the young actress onto the A-list. For the rest of the decade, Bullock would continue to find success in her films, and the turn of the millennium proved to be kind as well.
In 2009, the actress starred in The Blindside, and became an Academy Award winner for the first time in her impressive career. In 2013, Bullock would star alongside George Clooney in the critically acclaimed Gravity, and would reach another level in box office domination. With Ocean’s 8 (a reboot of the Ocean’s Trilogy) set to release in 2018, Bullock seems poised to add on to her incredible career.
10. Angelina Jolie, Best Supporting Actress (1999)
For as long as I can remember, Angelina Jolie has been one of the most polarizing figures in Hollywood. Her beauty is nearly unparalleled, her acting prowess is undeniable, and her humanitarian efforts make Jolie as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside. Her work abroad has been inspirational, and she continues to break new ground in making the world a better place for the future.
As an actress, Jolie has played some incredible characters in her career, but none have rivaled her portrayal of Lisa Rowe in Girl, Interrupted. For the role, Jolie won an Academy Award, a Screen Actors Guild award, and a Golden Globe award. Don’t get me wrong, she was fantastic in Gia, but my Girl, Interrupted is just that good. Despite all of her business being floated around in the media, Jolie has maintained her poise, and will continue to deliver big in each future performance.
9. Catherine Zeta-Jones, Best Supporting Actress (2002)
In 1990, Catherine Zeta-Jones starred in her very first movie 1001 Nights, and would begin a career that would see the actress become a worldwide star. The Welsh actress would go on to make a huge name for herself in 1998’s The Mask of Zorro, and her star would continue to grow. After several successful turns at the box office, Zeta-Jones would land the role that would be her most recognizable to date.
Chicago was released in 2002, and with it came a box office fortune, critical acclaim, and a slew of award nominations across the board. Zeta-Jones would go on to win an Academy Award, Screen Actors Guild Award, and a BAFTA Award for her performance in the film. She has also won two Blockbuster Entertainment Awards. That’s right, folks; my old employer used to have its very own awards show, and Zeta-Jones won on multiple occasions. Excuse me while I reminisce about my old job at Blockbuster.
8. Anne Hathaway, Best Supporting Actress (2012)
The Princess Diaries was my first exposure to Anne Hathaway, and I’ll never forget it. The crazy-haired nerd Mia Thermopolis who was unknowingly the granddaughter of the timeless Julie Andrews underwent a transformation that knocked me off of my feet. But it wasn’t just her looks that were impressive. Hathaway killed it, and would kick off a career that has seen the actress tackle everything genre, including drama, comedy, musical and even superhero films.
2012 may be Hathaway’s biggest year so far. She dazzled fans in the billion dollar The Dark Knight Rises as Selena Kyle, and then delivered a highly decorated performance in the movie Les Miserables which would make over 440 million dollars. She would win an Academy Award, Screen Actors Guild Award, BAFTA Award, and Golden Globe Award for her performance. In 2018, Hathaway will appear in Ocean’s 8 along with Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, and Helena Bonham Carter.
7. Lupita Nyong’o, Best Supporting Actress (2013)
In recent years, Lupta Nyong’o has slowly become one of the most respected actresses in the world. Her talents far surpass what we have seen on screen, as the actress has become quite the prolific stage actress, winning a Tony Award for her efforts. Born in Mexico and raised in Kenya, Lupita Nyongo’s a beautiful and talented actress whose career is just getting started.
In 2013, Nyong’o would turn heads with a stunning performance that game with numerous accolades. After winning an Academy Award for her performance in 12 Years a Slave, Nyong’o would follow up that critically acclaimed performance with roles in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and in The Jungle Book. Both of those films went on to gross over one billion dollars, and in 2017, Nyong’o will reprise her role as Maz Kanata in Star Wars: Episode VIII. Not bad for someone who attended the Yale School of Drama.
6. Marion Cotillard, Best Actress (2007)
Prior to making a name for herself in English films, Marion Cotillard was cutting her teeth acting in films in her native France. With over 20 movies under her belt, Cotillard was ready to find success outside of her native country. In 2003, she snagged herself a role in Tim Burton’s Big Fish, bringing her name across the pond to American audiences. However, it would be another French film that would help Cotillard secure her Academy Award win.
2007’s La Vie en rose saw Marion Cotillard portray French cabaret singer Edith Piaf, and her performance in the film would ultimately win her an Academy Award, BAFTA Award, Cesar Award, and Golden Globe Award. The film would also catalyze an impressive career that includes the films Public Enemies, Inception, and The Dark Knight Rises. Later this year, Cotillard will star alongside Michael Fassbender in the highly anticipated Assassin’s Creed film based off of the video game series of the same name.
5. Natalie Portman, Best Actress (2010)
Very few people on the planet can lay claim to having been in both the Star Wars universe and the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but not everyone is Natalie Portman. The Ivy League educated actress is currently in her third separate decade of film work and shows no signs of slowing down. Her portrayal of Padme Amidala in the Star Wars prequel trilogy was a bright spot in a series of movies that received some backlash for its acting. As Jane Foster in the Thor series, Portman shined, and will surely be missed at the Marvel Cinematic Universe will trudge ahead with Thor: Ragnarok set to release in 2017.
In 2010, Natalie Portman won her lone Academy Award for her work in the film Black Swan along with a number of other awards and accolades that year. Portman has three films tentatively slated for release in 2017, but I can’t help but feel selfish in wanting her to continue in the Thor series.
4. Alicia Vikander, Best Supporting Actress (2015)
Working with someone as talented as Eddie Redmayne and managing to deliver a performance that stands out is no easy feat. 2015’s The Danish Girl saw the duo working together to deliver a film that was one of the year’s best. The Swedish actress is a true beauty, and has developed into a very talented actress. But, her acting career began almost nearly fifteen years ago, and appears to be heading for continued success.
Following her Academy Award winning performance in The Danish Girl, Vikander would star in the 2016 film Jason Bourne with Matt Damon and Tommy Lee Jones. The film would gross over 400 million dollars at the box office, and showed that Vikander can hold her own in a big budget thriller. In 2018, Vikander is set to play the role of Lara Croft (which once belonged to Angelina Jolie) in the reboot of the Tomb Raider series.
3. Halle Berry, Best Actress (2001)
Halle Berry, hallelujah. In 1992, Halle Berry starred with Eddie Murphy in the comedy Boomerang, and the world was all the better for it. Two years later, Berry would co-star in The Flintstones, which would gross over 300 million dollars at the box office that year. With continued success through the 1990s Berry would find her superstardom coming in 2000 when she played the role of Storm in X-Men. The film launched the superhero movie craze, and Berry would reap some massive benefits.
Just one year after the success of X-Men, Berry would win an Academy Award for her role in Monster’s Ball. Catwoman notwithstanding, Berry has had an incredible career in Hollywood, and it’s hard to believe that she’s 50 years old and still more beautiful than the bulk of her contemporaries. In 2017, Berry is slated to be in Kingsman: The Golden Circle, and I for one cannot wait to see it.
2. Charlize Theron, Best Actress (2003)
To say that Charlize Theron is a highly decorated, accomplished, and respected actress in a major understatement. To date, the South African actress has been nominated for most every major acting award, and has secured more than her fair share of victories on the awards circuit. The Academy Award winner has always carried herself with elegance, and has continued to deliver fantastic films throughout her decorated career.
In 2003, Theron won her lone Academy Award for her work in the film Monster in which she underwent a major physical transformation, and was nearly unrecognizable. Two years later, Theron would be nominated for another Academy Award for her acting in the film North Country, but would lose out to Reese Witherspoon. With major films like Snow White and the Huntsman, The Italian Job, and Mad Max: Fury Road to her credit, Theron’s career has been an absolute delight for us all to see.
1. Audrey Hepburn, Best Actress (1953)
At number one on our list, we have an actress who requires no introduction. Audrey Hepburn’s first film appearance was nearly 70 years ago, and the actress has continued to defy time and transcend generations for her on-screen feats. Hepburn (along with Marilyn Monroe) has always been, and will always be the definitive Hollywood beauty standard with which all other actresses will be measured. In 1953, Hepburn won her Academy Award for her performance in the movie Roman Holiday.
Though her beauty, her acting, and her legendary role in Breakfast at Tiffany’s may be what she’s most remembered for, Hepburn dedicated a portion of her life to making the world a better place through her humanitarian efforts. It is because of people like Audrey Hepburn and her influence that many modern actresses continue to make a difference in our world. Exhibiting all of the characteristics needed both inside and out, it’s quite easy to see why Audrey Hepburn was the easy choice for our top spot.
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