AFI's 100 YEARS...100 HEROES & VILLAINS


AFI's 100 GREATEST HEROES & VILLAINS

AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains is a list of the 50 top movie heroes and 50 top movie villains of all time.

The characters on this list have a made a mark on American society in matters of style and substance. They also elicit strong reactions across time, enriching America's film heritage while continuing to inspire contemporary artists and audiences.

The AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains three-hour television special, hosted by Arnold Schwarzenegger, who earned both a hero and villain honor for his portrayal of the "Terminator," originally aired on CBS on June 4, 2003.

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HEROES

VILLAINS

1

Atticus Finch
(in TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD)

Dr. Hannibal Lecter
(in THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS)

2

Indiana Jones
(in RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK)

Norman Bates
(in PSYCHO)

3

James Bond
(in DR. NO)

Darth Vader
(in THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK)

4

Rick Blaine
(in CASABLANCA)

The Wicked Witch of the West
(in THE WIZARD OF OZ)

5

Will Kane
(in HIGH NOON)

Nurse Ratched
(in ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST)

6

Clarice Starling
(in THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS)

Mr. Potter
(in IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE)

7

Rocky Balboa
(in ROCKY)

Alex Forrest
(in FATAL ATTRACTION)

8

Ellen Ripley
(in ALIENS)

Phyllis Dietrichson
(in DOUBLE INDEMNITY)

9

George Bailey
(in IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE)

Regan MacNeil
(in THE EXORCIST)

10

T. E. Lawrence
(in LAWRENCE OF ARABIA)

The Queen
(in SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS)

11

Jefferson Smith
(in MR. SMITH GOES TO WASHINGTON)

Michael Corleone
(in THE GODFATHER: PART II)

12

Tom Joad
(in THE GRAPES OF WRATH)

Alex De Large
(in CLOCKWORK ORANGE)

13

Oskar Schindler
(in SCHINDLER'S LIST)

HAL 9000
(in 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY)

14

Han Solo
(in STAR WARS)

The Alien
(in ALIEN)

15

Norma Rae Webster
(in NORMA RAE)

Amon Goeth
(in SCHINDLER'S LIST)

16

Shane
(in SHANE)

Noah Cross
(in CHINATOWN)

17

Harry Callahan
(in DIRTY HARRY)

Annie Wilkes
(in MISERY)

18

Robin Hood
(in THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD)

The Shark
(in JAWS)

19

Virgil Tibbs
(in IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT)

Captain Bligh
(in MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY)

20

Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid
(in BUTCH CASSIDY & THE SUNDANCE KID)

Man
(in BAMBI)

21

Mahatma Gandhi
(in GANDHI)

Mrs. John Iselin
(in THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE)

22

Spartacus
(in SPARTACUS)

Terminator
(in THE TERMINATOR)

23

Terry Malloy
(in ON THE WATERFRONT)

Eve Harrington
(in ALL ABOUT EVE)

24

Thelma Dickerson & Louise Sawyer
(in THELMA & LOUISE)

Gordon Gekko
(in WALL STREET)

25

Lou Gehrig
(in THE PRIDE OF THE YANKEES)

Jack Torrance
(in THE SHINING)

26

Superman
(in SUPERMAN)

Cody Jarrett
(in WHITE HEAT)

27

Bob Woodward & Carl Bernstein
(in ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN)

Martians
(in THE WAR OF THE WORLDS)

28

Juror #8
(in 12 ANGRY MEN)

Max Cady
(in CAPE FEAR)

29

General George Patton
(in PATTON)

Reverend Harry Powell
(in THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER)

30

Luke Jackson
(in COOL HAND LUKE)

Travis Bickle
(in TAXI DRIVER)

31

Erin Brockovich
(in ERIN BROCKOVICH)

Mrs. Danvers
(in REBECCA)

32

Philip Marlowe
(in THE BIG SLEEP)

Clyde Barrow & Bonnie Parker
(in BONNIE AND CLYDE)

33

Marge Gunderson
(in FARGO)

Count Dracula
(in DRACULA)

34

Tarzan
(in TARZAN THE APE MAN)

Dr. Szell
(in MARATHON MAN)

35

Alvin York
(in SERGEANT YORK)

J.J. Hunsecker
(in SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS)

36

Rooster Cogburn
(in TRUE GRIT)

Frank Booth
(in BLUE VELVET)

37

Obi-Wan Kenobi
(in STAR WARS)

Harry Lime
(in THE THIRD MAN)

38

The Tramp
(in CITY LIGHTS)

Caesar Enrico Bandello
(in LITTLE CAESAR)

39

Lassie
(in LASSIE COME HOME)

Cruella De Vil
(in ONE HUNDRED AND ONE DALMATIONS)

40

Frank Serpico
(in SERPICO)

Freddy Krueger
(in A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET)

41

Arthur Chipping
(in GOODBYE, MR. CHIPS)

Joan Crawford
(in MOMMIE DEAREST)

42

Father Edward
(in BOYS TOWN)

Tom Powers
(in THE PUBLIC ENEMY)

43

Moses
(in THE TEN COMMANDMENTS)

Regina Giddens
(in THE LITTLE FOXES)

44

Jimmy "Popeye" Doyle
(in THE FRENCH CONNECTION)

Baby Jane Hudson
(in WHATEVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE)

45

Zorro
(in THE MARK OF ZORRO)

The Joker
(in BATMAN)

46

Batman
(in BATMAN)

Hans Gruber
(in DIE HARD)

47

Karen Silkwood
(in SILKWOOD)

Tony Camonte
(in SCARFACE)

48

Terminator
(in TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY)

Verbal Kint
(in THE USUAL SUSPECTS)

49

Andrew Beckett
(in PHILADELPHIA)

Auric Goldfinger
(in GOLDFINGER)

50

General Maximus Decimus Meridus
(in GLADIATOR)

Alonzo Harris
(in TRAINING DAY)

SELECTION CRITERIA

The jurors were asked to consider the following criteria while making their selections:

  • Feature-Length Fiction Film: The film must be in narrative format, typically more than 60 minutes in length.

  • American Film: The film must be in the English language with significant creative and/or financial production elements from the United States.

  • Hero: For voting purposes, a "hero" was defined as a character(s) who prevails in extreme circumstances and dramatizes a sense of morality, courage and purpose. Though they may be ambiguous or flawed, they often sacrifice themselves to show humanity at its best.

  • Villain: For voting purposes, a "villain" was defined as a character(s) whose wickedness of mind, selfishness of character and will to power are sometimes masked by beauty and nobility, while others may rage unmasked. They can be horribly evil or grandiosely funny, but are ultimately tragic.

  • Cultural Impact: Characters who have a made a mark on American society in matters of style and substance.

  • Legacy: Characters who elicit strong reactions across time, enriching America's film heritage while continuing to inspire contemporary artists and audiences.


AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains is the sixth installment in AFI's centennial celebration of American cinema, meant to spark a national discussion of America's film history among movie lovers across the nation.


AFI's 100 YEARS...100 HEROES & VILLAINS (2003)
List of the 400 nominated screen characters
AFI's Top 50 heroes and top 50 villains
Click here to go to the list downloads page

AFI Membership
AFI honoring the year best in television and film