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Old 12-28-2013, 02:05 PM
 
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You are allowed to state what you mean by BIG. You can choose more than one in well defined categories.

Following is a list of over 30 actresses ranked by estimated number of tickets sold and with number of movies. Number of tickets is used rather than boxoffice to give more credit to older movies when ticket prices were lower. Carrie Fisher has done almost no movies in 20 years. Actresses who did their biggest work before the 1970's have limited data except for Julie Andrews.

Julia Roberts did only one animated movie (Charlotte's Web- while she was pregnant) and only repeated a role once (Oceans 11 & 12). But she has not had a lead role in a blockbuster in 14 years since Erin Brockovich. Her last eighteen films have included modest successes.

Sally Field was in a lot of big movies as far back as the 1970's, but her biggest film where she was the star of the film was "Norma Rae" which sold less than 9 million tickets.

Cameron Diaz total is greatly inflated by the four Shrek movies.

Emma Watson and Helen Bonham Carter obviously had their totals swelled by Harry Potter films.

Sigourney Weaver has been in a number of franchises, and was the dominant actor in the Alien series.

Kathy Bates does not have the lead role in any blockbusters. Angelina Jolie is one of the few actresses that can completely dominate a movie like Salt, Wanted, and Laura Croft. Meryl Streep is one of the most honored actresses of our time, and she has made some very popular films.

Sandra Bullock has had a pretty amazing last five years. She sold 108 million tickets in only four movies since summer of 2009. In comparison Julia Roberts has sold 107 million tickets since 2002 (after Oceans 11).

# movies - Actress - Millions of tickets domestically - Biggest film
39 Julia Roberts 501.4 : Pretty Woman
26 Sally Field 466.0 : Forrest Gump
31 Cameron Diaz 464.9 : Shrek 2
16 Carrie Fisher 435.6 : Star Wars
44 Sigourney Weaver 420.1 : Avatar
42 Kathy Bates 392.1 : Titanic
13 Emma Watson 378.0 : Harry Potter / Sorcerer's Stone
47 Meryl Streep 375.5 : Kramer Vs. Kramer
32 Helena Bonham Carter 359.0 : Harry Potter / Deathly Hallows (P2)
33 Sandra Bullock 354.9 : The Blind Side
34 Diane Keaton 352.6 : The Godfather
33 Drew Barrymore 349.4 : E.T.
24 Natalie Portman 327.0 : The Phantom Menace
32 Cate Blanchett 316.0 : Return of the King
13 Julie Andrews 314.2 : Sound of Music
54 Susan Sarandon 308.9 : Rocky Horror
29 Kirsten Dunst 308.0 : Spider-Man
15 Barbra Streisand 303.1 : Meet the Fockers
36 Michelle Pfeiffer 297.0 : Batman Returns
28 Halle Berry 287.4 : X-Men: The Last Stand
37 Nicole Kidman 284.6 : Batman Forever
32 Gwyneth Paltrow 280.5 : Iron Man 3
28 Queen Latifah 278.6 : Ice Age 2
21 Jada Pinkett-Smith 277.7 : The Matrix Reloaded
30 Judi Dench 277.4 : Skyfall
23 Liv Tyler 265.7 : Return of the King
20 Anne Hathaway 265.3 : The Dark Knight Rises
29 Meg Ryan 263.4 : Top Gun
19 Rene Russo 248.3 : Lethal Weapon 3
28 Angelina Jolie 244.2 : Mr. & Mrs. Smith
16 Michelle Rodriguez 237.9 : Avatar
30 Glenn Close 237.6 : Fatal Attraction
29 Demi Moore 235.5 : Ghost
21 Kristen Stewart 234.8 : New Moon
47 Julianne Moore 230.3 : The Lost World
29 Scarlett Johansson 226.7 : The Avengers
21 Zoe Saldana 224.4 : Avatar

The numbers of tickets sold by actors are much higher
38 Harrison Ford 983.2 : Star Wars
42 Tom Hanks 816.0 : Forrest Gump
38 Eddie Murphy 755.2 : Shrek 2
34 Tom Cruise 659.9 : Top Gun
46 Robin Williams 630.6 : Mrs. Doubtfire
51 Morgan Freeman 623.4 : The Dark Knight
57 Bruce Willis 600.2 : Sixth Sense
60 Samuel L. Jackson 594.4 : The Avengers
39 Dustin Hoffman 588.9 : The Graduate
37 Sean Connery 584.6 : Thunderball
73 Robert DeNiro 571.9 : Meet the Fockers
46 Clint Eastwood 551.9 : Every Which Way But Loose
44 John Travolta 551.3 : Grease

Last edited by PacoMartin; 12-28-2013 at 03:25 PM..
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Old 12-28-2013, 03:00 PM
 
Location: Maine
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I'm not sure that # of tickets sold is relevant. Star power no longer has the pull it once did. I mean, look at Harrison Ford. He tops the list, but he hasn't had a successful movie in ... what? Almost 20 years now? And did people really see Forrest Gump ten times because of Sally Field? No.

When it comes to my favorite actresses, acting ability and the roles they've played are really the only consideration. Julia Roberts certainly wouldn't crack my Top 20. My favorites in that list would certainly be Judi Dench, Kathy Bates, and Sigourney Weaver.
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Old 12-28-2013, 03:11 PM
 
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Yeah, I don't think Julia Roberts would hit my top 100. I think dead ones, Elizabeth Taylor.
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Old 12-28-2013, 06:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark S. View Post
I mean, look at Harrison Ford. He tops the list, but he hasn't had a successful movie in ... what? Almost 20 years now? And did people really see Forrest Gump ten times because of Sally Field?
Granted that Harrison Ford gets 560 million tickets from the 6 movies (Star Trek & Indiana Jones). His most successful movies in the last 20 years were (by millions of tickets sold).

Roughly 20 years ago
8/6/1993 44.40 The Fugitive
8/5/1994 29.23 Clear and Present Danger

5/22/2008 44.17 Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
7/25/1997 37.67 Air Force One
7/21/2000 28.84 What Lies Beneath
7/29/2011 12.63 Cowboys & Aliens

And Sally Field was not the main star of her biggest movies. You have to count down to #15 for Norma Rae.
1 Forrest Gump 7/6/1994
2 Smokey and the Bandit 5/27/1977
3 Mrs. Doubtfire 11/24/1993
4 The Amazing Spider-Man 7/3/2012
5 Hooper 7/28/1978
6 Smokey and the Bandit II 8/15/1980
7 Lincoln 11/9/2012
8 Steel Magnolias 11/17/1989
9 The End 5/10/1978
10 Heroes 11/17/1977
11 Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde 7/2/2003
12 Absence of Malice 11/20/1981
13 Places in the Heart 9/21/1984
14 Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey 2/5/1993
15 Norma Rae 3/2/1979
16 Soapdish 5/31/1991
17 Murphy's Romance 12/27/1985
18 Homeward Bound II: Lost in San Francisco 3/8/1996
19 Eye for an Eye 1/12/1996
20 Punchline 9/30/1988
21 Kiss Me Goodbye 12/24/1982
22 Back Roads 3/13/1981
23 Not Without My Daughter 1/11/1991
24 Surrender 10/9/1987
25 Say It Isn't So 3/23/2001
26 Two Weeks 12/1/2006


But I did invite you to give your own criteria.I only ask that you limit the choice to a living actress.
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Old 12-28-2013, 10:45 PM
 
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No one will ever compare to Meryl Streep. She's peerless.
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Old 12-30-2013, 04:41 PM
 
Location: So Ca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PacoMartin View Post
Kathy Bates 392.1 : Titanic
I never knew she was even in this film! (Obviously it was not her biggest film...)
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Old 12-30-2013, 06:46 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CA4Now View Post
I never knew she was even in this film! (Obviously it was not her biggest film...)
Kathy Bates had a prominent role as "The Unsinkable Molly Brown," who became famous as one of the survivors of the sinking of the RMS Titanic. She was portrayed by Kathy Bates in the film. She was one of the other few kind-hearted upper class passengers. When the Titanic sank, Molly escaped in Lifeboat No. 6 and was one of the few survivors from the Titanic accident. She clashes with Quartermaster Robert Hitchens in the lifeboat; Molly believed that; because there was plenty of room in the boat, they should pick up survivors in the water. But Hitchens believed they would swamp the boat. She almost wins in her argument, until Hitchens threatens to toss her overboard. (In reality, just the opposite exchange occurred, and the boat did go back for survivors, of which none were found.)

Kathy Bates three biggest films which sold just as many tickets as the other 39 films were films where she played a role. She did have larger roles in Fried Green Tomatoes, Misery, and Dolores Claiborne.

I am not sure if I could make such a list where I limit the ticket count to "lead" roles. Women, in particular usually share the screen with at least one man. Personally, I would say that she had a "lead role" in 7 of her top 10 films, but that is still a judgement call because some would say she still was critical and was paid a large salary for Hook and Oceans 11

Julia Roberts
Pretty Woman - Lead - $300,000
Ocean's Eleven - Not Lead - $10,000,000
Runaway Bride - Lead - $17,000,000
Hook - Not Lead - $7,000,000
My Best Friend's Wedding - Lead - $12,000,000
The Pelican Brief - Lead - $8,000,000
Sleeping with the Enemy - Lead - $1,000,000
Erin Brockovich - Lead - $20,000,000
Notting Hill - Lead - $15,000,000
Steel Magnolias - Not Lead - $90,000


Kathy Bates
  1. Titanic
  2. The Waterboy
  3. The Blind Side
  4. Fried Green Tomatoes
  5. Misery
  6. Valentine's Day
  7. Failure to Launch
  8. Charlotte's Web (2006)
  9. The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)
  10. About Schmidt
  11. Fred Claus
  12. Primary Colors
  13. P.S. I Love You
  14. Midnight in Paris
  15. Dolores Claiborne
  16. Dragonfly
  17. Tyler Perry's The Family That Preys
  18. Prelude to a Kiss
  19. Used People
  20. Straight Time
  21. White Palace
  22. Diabolique (1996)
  23. Around the World in 80 Days
  24. Arthur 2: On the Rocks
  25. Little Black Book
  26. Revolutionary Road
  27. American Outlaws
  28. North
  29. Men Don't Leave
  30. Angus
  31. A Home of Our Own
  32. Cheri
  33. At Play in the Fields of the Lord
  34. Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean
  35. Summer Heat
  36. Swept from the Sea
  37. Bonneville
  38. Love Liza
  39. Signs of Life
  40. The War at Home
  41. The Bridge of San Luis Rey
  42. A Little Bit of Heaven
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:02 AM
 
Location: Florida
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I think the main problem is that your tickets sold number only reflects domestic totals, but if we're talking about world-wide here, as your title suggests, we'd need to see the international numbers as well.

Regardless of the tickets sold number, if I had to name the current "Biggest movie actress in the world" I would have to say Meryl Streep, hands down. She has star power and name recognition around the world.

I'd say some second place finishers would be Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts.
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Old 01-02-2014, 08:50 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skeeter31 View Post
I think the main problem is that your tickets sold number only reflects domestic totals, but if we're talking about world-wide here, as your title suggests, we'd need to see the international numbers as well.

Regardless of the tickets sold number, if I had to name the current "Biggest movie actress in the world" I would have to say Meryl Streep, hands down. She has star power and name recognition around the world.

I'd say some second place finishers would be Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts.
Ticket prices worldwide are all different prices, so there is no way to adjust for different countries and different time periods. Also the worldwide movie industry is rapidly developing. In the 1970's an English language film sold mostly in USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and UK.

Only one actress has been in films that sold over $8 billion in tickets worldwide, and she is only 23 years old. Outside of the 8 Harry Potter films, she has played the voice in an animated film, 3 small art films, and had a small role in modest offbeat successful film about celebrities at the end of the world.

$8,023.6 million Emma Watson
$7,261.6 million Helena Bonham Carter
$6,589.7 million Cameron Diaz
$5,723.1 million Cate Blanchett
$5,303.3 million Julia Roberts
$5,007.4 million Sigourney Weaver
$4,770.9 million Anne Hathaway
$4,644.9 million Natalie Portman
$4,339.3 million Kathy Bates
$4,260.0 million Queen Latifah
$4,213.0 million Kristen Stewart
$3,916.9 million Gwyneth Paltrow
$3,774.9 million Sandra Bullock
$3,364.2 million Nicole Kidman
$2,929.0 million Meryl Streep

A third of Meryl Streep's worldwide gross was from Mamma Mia! and The Devil Wears Prada

A recent headline:
Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts have ruled Hollywood for so long, but they've never been in the same film. Can the superstars coexist in 'August: Osage County'?
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Old 01-02-2014, 08:53 PM
 
Location: The High Seas
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On your list there, I'd guess that Queen Latifah is probably the biggest.
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