Favourite Movie Icons

Holly Golightly

The Film Distributors’ Association (FDA) today announced results of a substantial poll conducted by Show Film First to determine UK cinema audiences’ favourite movie icons of all time.

The top twenty spans seven decades of the cinema, from the 1940s to the 2000s. It embraces a ‘who’s who’ of stylish screen heroes – and some villains – who have made an indelible impression on audiences’ hearts and minds in successive generations to earn their places in cinematic folklore.

The poll is published to coincide with today’s launch of the UK cinema line-up for summer 2013, which includes a range of favourite movie icons revitalised for contemporary audiences, including The Lone Ranger, Superman/Clark Kent (in Man of Steel), the Wolverine (from the X-Men universe), the Star Trek crew and, a decade after Monsters, Inc., Mike and Sulley return in Monsters University

The survey was conducted online for FDA by Show Film First Ltd. in two stages – firstly to seek a long list of public nominations of characters who had come to personify essential qualities of the cinema itself; and then a vote for the top twenty. More than 2,000 people aged 15 and over contributed nominations, while more than 7,000 participated in the second-stage vote in April 2013.

Here is the full chart:


Top 20 movie icons of all time as voted by UK cinemagoers in spring 2013


Holly Golightly as played by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)


James Bond 007 in the series of 23 films from Dr No (1962) to date


Michael Corleone as played by Al Pacino in The Godfather trilogy (1972, 1974, 1990)


Hannibal Lecter as played by Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs (1991) and subsequent films


Captain Jack Sparrow as played by Johnny Depp in The Pirates of the Caribbean films from 2003


Darth Vader in the Star Wars episodes (from 1977)


Tony Montana as played by Al Pacino in Scarface (1983)


The Joker as played by Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight (2008)


Forrest Gump as played by Tom Hanks (1994)


Rick Blaine as played by Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca (1942)


Sugar Kane as played by Marilyn Monroe in Some Like It Hot (1959)


The Terminator as played by Arnold Schwarzenegger (from 1984)


Indiana Jones as played by Harrison Ford (from 1981)


RP McMurphy as played by Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975)


George Bailey as played by James Stewart in It’s A Wonderful Life (1946)


Don Vito Corleone as played by Marlon Brando in The Godfather (1972)


The Man With No Name as played by Clint Eastwood in The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (1966)


John McClane as played by Bruce Willis in the Die Hard series (from 1988)


Red’ Redding as played by Martin Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption (1994)


Johnny Castle as played by Patrick Swayze in Dirty Dancing (1987)

Show Film First/FDA

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