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Article:

Quigley's Annual List of Box-Office Champions, 1932-1970

by Elizabeth, ReelClassics.com

October 23, 2003

Quigley's Annual "Top Ten MoneyMakers Poll" has been conducted every year since 1932 and is based on a yearly survey of motion picture exhibitors.  The survey asks the exhibitors to vote for the ten stars who generated the most box-office revenue for their theatres that year. Though it doesn't reflect actual box-office receipts, the Quigley poll has long been regarded as a reliable indicator of a star's box-office draw.  It is published annually in the International Motion Picture Almanac (New York: Quigley Publications).

When looking over the lists below, keep in mind that (especially in the earlier years) a star's ranking was frequently influenced by major blockbuster movies of their career, but not always in the year of the film's official release.  This is because under the old method of distributing films, it often took a movie many months after its premiere to reach theatres throughout the United States.  In the days of single-screen theatres (as opposed to today's multiplexes), films were not released simultaneously in hundreds of theatres across the country the way they are now.  Instead, movies opened in a few large theatres of major metropolitan cities before gradually working their way into the smaller theatres and cities as the larger theatres chose to showcase new films.  The more successful a film was, the longer it played in the big theatres, and the longer it took for people in the smaller cities to get to see it.  Thus, individual films continued to generate box-office revenues for several years, spreading out the impact of their success on the annual ranking of their stars.

* indicates a star's first appearance in the rankings

1932

  1. Marie Dressler *
  2. Janet Gaynor *
  3. Joan Crawford *
  4. Charles Farrell *
  5. Greta Garbo *
  6. Norma Shearer *
  7. Wallace Beery *
  8. Clark Gable *
  9. Will Rogers *
  10. Joe E. Brown *
     

1933

  1. Marie Dressler
  2. Will Rogers
  3. Janet Gaynor
  4. Eddie Cantor *
  5. Wallace Beery
  6. Jean Harlow *
  7. Clark Gable
  8. Mae West *
  9. Norma Shearer
  10. Joan Crawford

1934

  1. Will Rogers
  2. Clark Gable
  3. Janet Gaynor
  4. Wallace Beery
  5. Mae West
  6. Joan Crawford
  7. Bing Crosby *
  8. Shirley Temple *
  9. Marie Dressler
  10. Norma Shearer

1935

  1. Shirley Temple
  2. Will Rogers
  3. Clark Gable
  4. Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers *
  5. Joan Crawford
  6. Claudette Colbert *
  7. Dick Powell *
  8. Wallace Beery
  9. Joe E. Brown
  10. James Cagney *
     

1936

  1. Shirley Temple
  2. Clark Gable
  3. Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers
  4. Robert Taylor *
  5. Joe E. Brown
  6. Dick Powell
  7. Joan Crawford
  8. Claudette Colbert
  9. Jeanette MacDonald *
  10. Gary Cooper *
 

1937

  1. Shirley Temple
  2. Clark Gable
  3. Robert Taylor
  4. Bing Crosby
  5. William Powell *
  6. Jane Withers *
  7. Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers
  8. Sonja Henie *
  9. Gary Cooper
  10. Myrna Loy *
 

1938

  1. Shirley Temple
  2. Clark Gable
  3. Sonja Henie
  4. Mickey Rooney *
  5. Spencer Tracy *
  6. Robert Taylor
  7. Myrna Loy
  8. Jane Withers
  9. Alice Faye *
  10. Tyrone Power *
     

1939

  1. Mickey Rooney
  2. Tyrone Power
  3. Spencer Tracy
  4. Clark Gable
  5. Shirley Temple
  6. Bette Davis *
  7. Alice Faye *
  8. Errol Flynn *
  9. James Cagney
  10. Sonja Henie
 

1940

  1. Mickey Rooney
  2. Spencer Tracy
  3. Clark Gable
  4. Gene Autry *
  5. Tyrone Power
  6. James Cagney
  7. Bing Crosby
  8. Wallace Beery
  9. Bette Davis
  10. Judy Garland *
 

1941

  1. Mickey Rooney
  2. Clark Gable
  3. Abbott & Costello *
  4. Bob Hope *
  5. Spencer Tracy
  6. Gene Autry
  7. Gary Cooper
  8. Bette Davis
  9. James Cagney
  10. Judy Garland
     

1942

  1. Abbott & Costello
  2. Clark Gable
  3. Gary Cooper
  4. Mickey Rooney
  5. Bob Hope
  6. James Cagney
  7. Gene Autry
  8. Betty Grable *
  9. Greer Garson *
  10. Spencer Tracy
 

1943

  1. Betty Grable
  2. Bob Hope
  3. Abbott & Costello
  4. Bing Crosby
  5. Gary Cooper
  6. Greer Garson
  7. Humphrey Bogart*
  8. James Cagney
  9. Mickey Rooney
  10. Clark Gable

1944

  1. Bing Crosby
  2. Gary Cooper
  3. Bob Hope
  4. Betty Grable
  5. Spencer Tracy
  6. Greer Garson
  7. Humphrey Bogart
  8. Abbott & Costello
  9. Cary Grant *
  10. Bette Davis
     

1945

  1. Bing Crosby
  2. Van Johnson *
  3. Greer Garson
  4. Betty Grable
  5. Spencer Tracy
  6. (tie) Gary Cooper / Humphrey Bogart
  7. Bob Hope
  8. Judy Garland
  9. Margaret O'Brien *
  10. Roy Rogers *
     

1946

  1. Bing Crosby
  2. Ingrid Bergman *
  3. Van Johnson
  4. Gary Cooper
  5. Bob Hope
  6. Humphrey Bogart
  7. Greer Garson
  8. Margaret O'Brien
  9. Betty Grable
  10. Roy Rogers
     

1947

  1. Bing Crosby
  2. Betty Grable
  3. Ingrid Bergman
  4. Gary Cooper
  5. Humphrey Bogart
  6. Bob Hope
  7. Clark Gable
  8. Gregory Peck *
  9. Claudette Colbert
  10. Alan Ladd *
     

1948

  1. Bing Crosby
  2. Betty Grable
  3. Abbott & Costello
  4. Gary Cooper
  5. Bob Hope
  6. Humphrey Bogart
  7. Clark Gable
  8. Cary Grant
  9. Spencer Tracy
  10. Ingrid Bergman

1949

  1. Bob Hope
  2. Bing Crosby
  3. Abbott & Costello
  4. John Wayne *
  5. Gary Cooper
  6. Cary Grant
  7. Betty Grable
  8. Esther Williams *
  9. Humphrey Bogart
  10. Clark Gable

1950

  1. John Wayne
  2. Bob Hope
  3. Bing Crosby
  4. Betty Grable
  5. James Stewart *
  6. Abbott & Costello
  7. Clifton Webb *
  8. Esther Williams
  9. Spencer Tracy
  10. Randolph Scott *
     

1951

  1. John Wayne
  2. Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis *
  3. Betty Grable
  4. Abbott & Costello
  5. Bing Crosby
  6. Bob Hope
  7. Randolph Scott
  8. Gary Cooper
  9. Doris Day *
  10. Spencer Tracy
     

1952

  1. Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis
  2. Gary Cooper
  3. John Wayne
  4. Bing Crosby
  5. Bob Hope
  6. James Stewart
  7. Doris Day
  8. Gregory Peck
  9. Susan Hayward *
  10. Randolph Scott

1953

  1. Gary Cooper
  2. Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis
  3. John Wayne
  4. Alan Ladd
  5. Bing Crosby
  6. Marilyn Monroe *
  7. James Stewart
  8. Bob Hope
  9. Susan Hayward
  10. Randolph Scott
     

1954

  1. John Wayne
  2. Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis
  3. Gary Cooper
  4. James Stewart
  5. Marilyn Monroe
  6. Alan Ladd
  7. William Holden *
  8. Bing Crosby
  9. Jane Wyman *
  10. Marlon Brando *

1955

  1. James Stewart
  2. Grace Kelly *
  3. John Wayne
  4. William Holden
  5. Gary Cooper
  6. Marlon Brando
  7. Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis
  8. Humphrey Bogart
  9. June Allyson *
  10. Clark Gable

1956

  1. William Holden
  2. John Wayne
  3. James Stewart
  4. Burt Lancaster *
  5. Glenn Ford *
  6. Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis
  7. Gary Cooper
  8. Marilyn Monroe
  9. Kim Novak *
  10. Frank Sinatra *
     

1957

  1. Rock Hudson *
  2. John Wayne
  3. Pat Boone *
  4. Elvis Presley *
  5. Frank Sinatra
  6. Gary Cooper
  7. William Holden
  8. James Stewart
  9. Jerry Lewis
  10. Yul Brynner *

1958

  1. Glenn Ford
  2. Elizabeth Taylor *
  3. Jerry Lewis
  4. Marlon Brando
  5. Rock Hudson
  6. William Holden
  7. Brigitte Bardot *
  8. Yul Brynner
  9. James Stewart
  10. Frank Sinatra

1959

  1. Rock Hudson
  2. Cary Grant
  3. James Stewart
  4. Doris Day
  5. Debbie Reynolds *
  6. Glenn Ford
  7. Frank Sinatra
  8. John Wayne
  9. Jerry Lewis
  10. Susan Hayward
     

1960

  1. Doris Day
  2. Rock Hudson
  3. Cary Grant
  4. Elizabeth Taylor
  5. Debbie Reynolds
  6. Tony Curtis *
  7. Sandra Dee *
  8. Frank Sinatra
  9. Jack Lemmon *
  10. John Wayne

1961

  1. Elizabeth Taylor
  2. Rock Hudson
  3. Doris Day
  4. John Wayne
  5. Cary Grant
  6. Sandra Dee
  7. Jerry Lewis
  8. William Holden
  9. Tony Curtis
  10. Elvis Presley

1962

  1. Doris Day
  2. Rock Hudson
  3. Cary Grant
  4. John Wayne
  5. Elvis Presley
  6. Elizabeth Taylor
  7. Jerry Lewis
  8. Frank Sinatra
  9. Sandra Dee
  10. Burt Lancaster
     

1963

  1. Doris Day
  2. John Wayne
  3. Rock Hudson
  4. Jack Lemmon
  5. Cary Grant
  6. Elizabeth Taylor
  7. Elvis Presley
  8. Sandra Dee
  9. Paul Newman *
  10. Jerry Lewis
     

1964

  1. Doris Day
  2. Jack Lemmon
  3. Rock Hudson
  4. John Wayne
  5. Cary Grant
  6. Elvis Presley
  7. Shirley MacLaine *
  8. Ann-Margret *
  9. Paul Newman
  10. Richard Burton *

1965

  1. Sean Connery *
  2. John Wayne
  3. Doris Day
  4. Julie Andrews *
  5. Jack Lemmon
  6. Elvis Presley
  7. Cary Grant
  8. James Stewart
  9. Elizabeth Taylor
  10. Richard Burton
     

1966

  1. Julie Andrews
  2. Sean Connery
  3. Elizabeth Taylor
  4. Jack Lemmon
  5. Richard Burton
  6. Cary Grant
  7. John Wayne
  8. Doris Day
  9. Paul Newman
  10. Elvis Presley

1967

  1. Julie Andrews
  2. Lee Marvin *
  3. Paul Newman
  4. Dean Martin
  5. Sean Connery
  6. Elizabeth Taylor
  7. Sidney Poitier *
  8. John Wayne
  9. Richard Burton
  10. Steve McQueen *

1968

  1. Sidney Poitier
  2. Paul Newman
  3. Julie Andrews
  4. John Wayne
  5. Clint Eastwood *
  6. Dean Martin
  7. Steve McQueen
  8. Jack Lemmon
  9. Lee Marvin
  10. Elizabeth Taylor

1969

  1. Paul Newman
  2. John Wayne
  3. Steve McQueen
  4. Dustin Hoffman *
  5. Clint Eastwood
  6. Sidney Poitier
  7. Lee Marvin
  8. Jack Lemmon
  9. Katharine Hepburn *
  10. Barbra Streisand *

1970

  1. Paul Newman
  2. Clint Eastwood
  3. Steve McQueen
  4. John Wayne
  5. Elliott Gould
  6. Dustin Hoffman
  7. Lee Marvin
  8. Jack Lemmon
  9. Barbra Streisand
  10. Walter Matthau *

2003 Reel Classics, LLC

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