Positive Female Role models

by msdeborahgordon | created - 21 Mar 2012 | updated - 21 May 2013 | Public

In no particular order, more the way the list came to my mind. Just the way this databased seems to apply numbers. I think they are all fab for what they have achieved.

1. Sigourney Weaver

Actress | Avatar

Sigourney Weaver was born Susan Alexandra Weaver in Leroy Hospital in Manhattan, New York City. Her father, TV producer Sylvester L. Weaver Jr., originally wanted to name her Flavia, because of his passion for Roman history (he had already named her elder brother Trajan). Her mother, Elizabeth ...

2. Jodie Foster

Actress | The Silence of the Lambs

Jodie Foster was born Alicia Christian Foster on November 19, 1962 in Los Angeles. She is the daughter of Evelyn Ella "Brandy" (Almond), a producer, and Lucius Fisher Foster III, an Air Force lieutenant colonel and real estate broker. Brandy had filed for divorce in 1959 after having three children...

3. Allison Janney

Actress | The Help

Allison Janney is an award-winning actress who has earned a solid reputation in stage productions and in many supporting roles on screen, and who more recently has become prominent by portraying one of the major characters in the popular TV series The West Wing (1999).

Entertainment Weekly magazine ...

4. Barbara Broccoli

Producer | Skyfall

She is one of the entertainment industry's most successful female producers. Barbara Broccoli was born to legendary filmmaker Albert R. Broccoli, affectionately known as Cubby, and Dana Broccoli on June 18, 1960. Not long after, Cubby Broccoli and his new partner, Harry Saltzman, secured studio ...

5. Judi Dench

Actress | Skyfall

Dame Judi Dench was born Judith Olivia Dench in York, England, to Eleanora Olive (Jones), who was from Dublin, Ireland, and Reginald Arthur Dench, a doctor from Dorset, England. She attended Mount School in York, and studied at the Central School of Speech and Drama. She has performed with the ...

6. Charlize Theron

Actress | Monster

Charlize Theron was born in Benoni, a city in the greater Johannesburg area, in South Africa, the only child of Gerda Theron (née Maritz) and Charles Theron. She was raised on a farm outside the city. Theron is of Afrikaner (Dutch, with some French Huguenot and German) descent, and Afrikaner ...

7. Kathryn Bigelow

Director | The Hurt Locker

A very talented painter, Kathryn spent two years at the San Francisco Art Institute. At 20, she won a scholarship to the Whitney Museum's Independent Study Program. She was given a studio in a former Offtrack Betting building, literally in an old bank vault, where she made art and waited to be ...

8. Lois Maxwell

Actress | Thunderball

Everyone knows (or should know) Lois Maxwell as the one and only "Miss Moneypenny", but there's much more to her acting career than that. She started out against her parents' will, and without their knowledge, in a Canadian children's radio program, credited as "Robin Wells". Before the age of 15 ...

9. Helen Mirren

Actress | RED

Dame Helen Mirren was born in Queen Charlotte's Hospital in West London. Her mother, Kathleen Alexandrina Eva Matilda (Rogers), was from a working-class English family, and her father, Vasiliy Petrovich Mironov, was a Russian-born civil servant, from Kuryanovo, whose own father was a diplomat. ...

10. Jane Campion

Writer | The Piano

Jane Campion was born in Wellington, New Zealand, and now lives in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. Having graduated with a BA in Anthropology from Victoria University of Wellington in 1975, and a BA, with a painting major, at Sydney College of the Arts in 1979, she began filmmaking in the early...

11. Sue Gibson

Camera_department | AVP: Alien vs. Predator

Sue Gibson was born in 1952 in Derby, Derbyshire, England. She is known for her work on Alien vs. Predator (2004), Resident Evil (2002) and The Holiday (2006). She died on July 27, 2016 in England.

12. Lynda La Plante

Writer | Prime Suspect

Lynda La Plante was born on March 15, 1943 in Liverpool, England as Lynda J Titchmarsh. She is a writer and actress, known for Prime Suspect (1991), Prime Suspect 3 (1993) and Widows (2018). She was previously married to Richard La Plante.

13. Geena Davis

Actress | Thelma & Louise

As a child, Geena dreamed of being an actress. While in high school, she felt left out and had low self-esteem because, at 6 feet, she was the tallest girl in school. After high school graduation, Geena entered New England College in New Hampshire and then transferred the next year to Boston ...

Executive Producer Actor

14. Susan Sarandon

Actress | Thelma & Louise

Susan Sarandon was born Susan Abigail Tomalin in New York City, NY, to homemaker Lenora Marie (Criscione) and Phillip Leslie Tomalin, an advertising executive. She is of Italian descent on her mother's side and English, Irish, Welsh, and German on her father's.

After the 1968 Democratic convention ...

15. Thelma Schoonmaker

Editor | The Departed

Thelma Schoonmaker was born on January 3, 1940 in Algiers, Algeria as Thelma Colbert Schoonmaker. She is an editor, known for The Departed (2006), Raging Bull (1980) and Hugo (2011). She was previously married to Michael Powell.

16. Melissa Byers

Camera_department | Gravity

D.O.P and Camera

17. S.J. Clarkson

Director | The Defenders

S.J. Clarkson is a director and writer, known for The Defenders (2017), Life on Mars (2006) and Jessica Jones (2015).

18. Lauren Bacall

Actress | To Have and Have Not

Lauren Bacall was born Betty Joan Perske on September 16, 1924, in New York City. She was the daughter of Natalie Weinstein-Bacal, a Romanian Jewish immigrant, and William Perske, who was born in New Jersey, to Polish Jewish parents. Her family was middle-class, with her father working as a ...

19. Kate Mulgrew

Actress | Star Trek: Voyager

Katherine Kiernan Mulgrew, or Kate Mulgrew, was born on April 29, 1955. She grew up in Dubuque, Iowa, the second oldest child (and oldest girl) in a large Irish Catholic family. When Kate expressed an interest in acting as a child, her mother, Joan, encouraged her to audition for local theater ...

20. Honor Blackman

Actress | Goldfinger

Comparing this sultry-eyed blonde to Greta Garbo and Marlene Dietrich may seem a bit overzealous, but Honor Blackman's stylish allure over the years cannot be denied.

One of four children, Blackman was born in London's East End to a statistician father employed with the civil service and a homemaker ...

21. Joanna Lumley

Actress | Absolutely Fabulous

Joanna Lumley was born on 1 May, 1946 in Kashmir, India, to British parents, Thya Beatrice Rose (Weir) and James Rutherford Lumley. Her father was a major in the Gurkha Rifles, and she spent most of her early childhood in the Far East where her father was posted.

An aspiring actress, she first came ...

22. Agatha Christie

Writer | Witness for the Prosecution

Agatha was born as "Agatha Mary Clarissa Miller" in 1890 to Frederick Alvah Miller and Clara Boehmer. Agatha was of American and British descent, her father being American and her mother British. Her father was a relatively affluent stockbroker. Agatha received home education from early childhood ...

23. J.K. Rowling

Writer | Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2

Joanne Rowling was born in Yate, near Bristol, a few miles south of a town called Dursley ("Harry Potter"'s Muggle-family). Her father Peter Rowling was an engineer for Rolls Royce in Bristol at this time. Her mother, Anne, was half-French and half-Scottish. They met on a train as it left King's ...

24. Jamie Lee Curtis

Actress | True Lies

Jamie Lee Curtis was born on November 22, 1958 in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of legendary actors Janet Leigh and Tony Curtis. She got her big break at acting in 1978 when she won the role of Laurie Strode in Halloween (1978). After that, she became famous for roles in movies like Trading...

25. Sheila Hancock

Actress | The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

Sheila Hancock was born February 22, 1933. on the Isle of Wight. She later moved to King's Cross in London, where her mother and father ran a pub. Sheila went to Dartford Grammar School, and then with a grant she went to RADA. She then went into nine years of weekly repertory around the country. ...

Actress

26. Tracey Seaward

Producer | Philomena

Tracey Seaward is a producer, known for Philomena (2013), The Queen (2006) and Eastern Promises (2007).

Producer and co-producer

27. Julie Walters

Actress | Billy Elliot

For decades, British actress and comedienne Dame Julie Walters has served as a sturdy representation of the working class with her passionate, earthy portrayals on England's stage, screen and television. A bona fide talent, her infectious spirit and self-deprecating sense of humor eventually ...

28. Linda Murphy

Sound_department | Unbreakable

Linda Murphy is known for her work on Unbreakable (2000), The Forgotten (2004) and Conspiracy Theory (1997).

29. Vanessa Redgrave

Actress | Atonement

On January 30, 1937, renowned theatre actor Michael Redgrave was performing in a production of Hamlet in London. During the curtain call, the show's lead, Laurence Olivier, announced to the audience: "tonight a great actress was born". This was in reference to his co-star's newborn daughter, ...

30. Maggie Smith

Actress | Gosford Park

One of the world's most famous and distinguished actresses, Dame Maggie Smith was born Margaret Natalie Smith in Essex. Her Scottish mother, Margaret (Hutton), worked as a secretary, and her English father, Nathaniel Smith, was a teacher at Oxford University. Smith has been married twice: to actor ...

32. P.D. James

Writer | Children of Men

P.D. James was born on August 3, 1920 in Oxford, Oxfordshire, England as Phyllis Dorothy James. She was a writer and producer, known for Children of Men (2006), Death in Holy Orders (2003) and Death Comes to Pemberley (2013). She was married to Ernest Connor Bantry White. She died on November 27, ...

33. Hilary Swank

Actress | Boys Don't Cry

Hilary was born in Lincoln, Nebraska, to Judith Kay (Clough), a secretary, and Stephen Michael Swank, who served in the National Guard and was also a traveling salesman. Her maternal grandmother, Frances Martha Dominguez, was of Mexican descent, and her other roots include German, English, and ...

34. Maeve Binchy

Writer | Italiensk for begyndere

Maeve Binchy was born on May 28, 1940 in Dalkey, Ireland. She was a writer, known for Italian for Beginners (2000), Echoes (1988) and Circle of Friends (1995). She was married to Gordon Snell. She died on July 30, 2012 in Dublin, Ireland.

35. Maureen Lipman

Actress | The Pianist

Maureen Lipman was born on 10 May 1946 in Hull, Yorkshire, England as Maureen Diane Lipman. She is an actress, known for The Pianist (2002), Educating Rita (1983) and Oklahoma! (1999) plus a series of adverts for British Telecom. She was married to Jack Rosenthal from 1973 until he died in 2004. ...

Post production sound

37. Sandra Bullock

Producer | The Proposal

Sandra Annette Bullock was born in Arlington, a Virginia suburb of Washington, D.C. Her mother, Helga Bullock (née Helga Mathilde Meyer), was a German opera singer. Her father, John W. Bullock, was an American voice teacher, who was born in Alabama, of German descent. Sandra grew up on the road ...

38. Lucy Liu

Actress | Kill Bill: Vol. 1

Born to immigrants in Queens, New York, Lucy Liu has always tried to balance an interest in her cultural heritage with a desire to move beyond a strictly Asian-American experience. Lucy's mother, Cecilia, a biochemist, is from Beijing, and her father, Tom Liu, a civil engineer, is from Shanghai. ...

39. Jennifer Saunders

Actress | Absolutely Fabulous

Jennifer Saunders was born July 6, 1958 in Sleaford, Lincolnshire, to Jane, a biology teacher, and Robert Thomas Saunders, an RAF pilot. She attended Central School of Speech and Drama where she met her comedy partner Dawn French. Like many of the early 80s groundbreaking "alternative" comedians ...

40. Victoria Wood

Writer | Dinnerladies

From the mid-1980s right up until her premature death in April 2016, Victoria Wood's appearances on stage and television were always eagerly anticipated, whether it was laugh-a-minute stand-up, a beautifully judged dramatic performance in the TV film Housewife, 49 (2006) or the canteen sitcom ...

Sound Editor

42. Jo Brand

Writer | Getting On

Jo Brand was born on July 23, 1957 in London, England as Josephine Grace Brand. She is a writer and actress, known for Getting On (2009), The More You Ignore Me (2018) and Damned (2016). She has been married to Bernie Bourke since December 19, 1997. They have two children.

43. Oprah Winfrey

Producer | The Oprah Winfrey Show

Oprah Winfrey was born Orpah Gail Winfrey in Kosciusko, Mississippi, to Vernita Lee, a former maid, and Vernon Winfrey, a coal miner, barber, and city councilman.

While Winfrey has been cited as the richest African-American of the 20th century, she does not come from a rich, or even middle class, ...

44. Jessica Lange

Actress | Tootsie

Jessica Lange was born in 1949, in Cloquet, Minnesota, USA, where her father worked as a traveling salesman. She obtained a scholarship to study art at the University of Minnesota, but instead went to Paris to study drama. She moved to New York, working as a model, until producer Dino De Laurentiis...

45. Pauline Collins

Actress | Shirley Valentine

Pauline Collins, OBE, came to prominence with portraying Sarah Moffat in BBC's Upstairs, Downstairs (1971) and its spin-off Thomas and Sarah (1979) during the 1970s. After having played the title-role in the play "Shirley Valentine" for which she earned Laurence Olivier, Tony, and Drama Desk awards...

Actress

46. Tyne Daly

Actress | Spider-Man: Homecoming

Tyne Daly was born on February 21, 1946 in Madison, Wisconsin, USA as Ellen Tyne Daly. She is an actress, known for Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017), Judging Amy (1999) and Cagney & Lacey (1981). She was previously married to Georg Stanford Brown.

47. Dawn French

Actress | French and Saunders

Dawn French was born on October 11, 1957 in Holyhead, Wales as Dawn Roma French. She is an actress and writer, known for French and Saunders (1987), The Vicar of Dibley (1994) and Coraline (2009). She has been married to Mark Bignell since April 20, 2013. She was previously married to Lenny Henry.

48. Lynne Ramsay

Director | You Were Never Really Here

Lynne Ramsay was born on December 5, 1969 in Glasgow, Strathclyde, Scotland. She is a director and writer, known for You Were Never Really Here (2017), We Need to Talk About Kevin (2011) and Morvern Callar (2002). She was previously married to Rory Stewart Kinnear.

Director Writer and Producer

49. Ruth Rendell

Writer | Carne trémula

Ruth Rendell was born on February 17, 1930 in South Woodford, Essex, England as Ruth Barbara Grasemann. She was a writer, known for Live Flesh (1997), The Ruth Rendell Mysteries (1987) and Alias Betty (2001). She was married to Donald John Rendell. She died on May 2, 2015 in London, England.

50. Joanna Hogg

Director | The Souvenir

Joanna Hogg was born on March 20, 1960 in London, England. She is a director and writer, known for The Souvenir (2019), Unrelated (2007) and Archipelago (2010).

Director, Writer

Poet and writer

Script Supervisor and continuity

53. Laura Lovejoy

Sound_department | Pandorum

Post production sound

54. Lynn Johnston

Make_up_department | Apocalypto

Make up

55. Antonia Bird

Director | Priest

Antonia Bird was born on May 27, 1951 in London, England. She was a director and producer, known for Priest (1994), Face (1997) and Ravenous (1999). She was married to Ian Ilett. She died on October 24, 2013 in London.

Director

Producer and Director

57. Nanu Segal

Camera_department | Bohemian Rhapsody

D.O.P

58. Beth McCarthy-Miller

Director | 30 Rock

Beth McCarthy-Miller was born on September 3, 1963 in Elizabeth, New Jersey, USA as Beth McCarthy Miller. She is a director and producer, known for 30 Rock (2006), Modern Family (2009) and Saturday Night Live (1975).

Director

59. Olivia Hetreed

Writer | Girl with a Pearl Earring

Olivia Hetreed is an editor and writer, known for Girl with a Pearl Earring (2003), Wuthering Heights (2011) and Home from Home (2019).

Writer

60. Cinders Forshaw

Cinematographer | Perfect Strangers

Member of the British Society of Cinematographers (BSC).

D.O.P

Camera

Writer

63. Orla Carrol

Make_up_department | Cinderella

Hair stylist

64. Shawn Slovo

Writer | A World Apart

Slovo's parents were leading white South African anti-apartheid activists Joe Slovo and Ruth First. Her experiences as a girl when her mother was imprisoned form the basis for A World Apart.

Writer, Camera

65. Sarah Greenwood

Production_designer | Anna Karenina

Sarah Greenwood is a production designer and set decorator, known for Anna Karenina (2012), Atonement (2007) and Sherlock Holmes (2009).

Production Designer

66. Eve Stewart

Production_designer | Les Misérables

Eve Stewart was born in 1961 in London, England. She is known for her work on Les Misérables (2012), The King's Speech (2010) and The Danish Girl (2015).

Production Designer

67. Karen Baker Landers

Sound_department | Skyfall

Baker Landers first displayed an affinity for sound at age eleven when her parents gave her a tape recorder. She would walk around her house and make up stories just through sound effects. While studying Film at California State University at Long Beach, she impressed sound designers Richard ...

Sound Superviser

68. Katie Spencer

Set_decorator | Anna Karenina

Katie Spencer is known for her work on Anna Karenina (2012), Sherlock Holmes (2009) and Atonement (2007).

Set Decorator

69. Lesli Linka Glatter

Director | Homeland

Lesli Linka Glatter is a director of film, network, cable and premium cable television drama, with both pilots and episodes to her credit. Lesli's TV work includes Homeland (2011), The Newsroom (2012), The Walking Dead (2010), Justified (2010), Ray Donovan (2013), Masters of Sex (2013), Nashville (...

Writer Director Producer

70. Lena Dunham

Writer | Tiny Furniture

New Yorker Lena Dunham is the daughter of a painter, Carroll Dunham and Laurie Simmons, a designer and photographer. Dunham was educated at Oberlin College, Ohio, graduating with a creative writing degree. It was while at Oberlin that she began writing shorts and feature films. In 2009, Dunham ...

Writer Director Producer

71. Jennifer Getzinger

Director | Mad Men

Jennifer Getzinger was born on September 26, 1967 in New Haven, Connecticut, USA. She is known for her work on Mad Men (2007), Counterpart (2017) and Outlander (2014).

Script Supervisor

72. Tami Lane

Make_up_department | The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

Tami Lane was born on June 16, 1974 in Peoria, Illinois, USA. She is known for her work on The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003), The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005) and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012).

Make Up

73. Anna Behlmer

Sound_department | L.A. Confidential

Anna Behlmer is an American re-recording mixer for film and television. Behlmer was the recipient of the Cinema Audio Society Career Achievement Award in 2018.

During her career Anna has worked with many esteemed filmmakers, including Baz Luhrmann, Steven Spielberg, Niki Caro, Bong Joon Ho, Chris ...

74. Noomi Rapace

Actress | Män som hatar kvinnor

Swedish actress Noomi Rapace was born in Hudiksvall, Gävleborgs län, Sweden, the daughter of Swedish actress Nina Norén and Spanish Flamenco singer Rogelio Durán. Her parents did not stay together, and when Rapace was five she moved to Iceland with her mother and stepfather, where she lived for ...

Actor



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