Celebrity Picks for the AfterEllen.com 2010 Hot 100


Shamim Sarif (Writer and director of The World Unseen and I Can’t Think Straight)

1. Hanan Kattan – Producer of I Can’t Think Straight and The World Unseen, and my wife. Perfect blend of fiery temperament and beautiful spirit. And she married me, so she clearly has good taste too.

2. Ayaan Hirsi Ali – Fiery and courageous to a whole new level. As someone who took difficult steps away from religion, I respect her willingness to talk publicly about the aspects of Islam that most people are afraid to address.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali

3. Lisa Ray – I declare an interest. She was the lead in ICTS and TWU. Stunningly beautiful? Sure. But what puts her on my top ten is her creative talent, her elegance of soul and the way she’s handled the hardest battle anyone could fight, without losing that infectious laugh once.

4. Angelina Jolie – It’s the attitude. On and off screen. You know what I mean.

5. Emmanuelle Beart – A fabulous actress and she just has that indefinable something. Beauty hiding a slight sense of the psychotic. But in a good way.

6. Penelope Cruz – She’s a chameleon. And that erotic dance in Nine was fun, but what draws me to her are the rounded characters like her neurotic artist in Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

7. Ellen DeGeneres – I have huge respect for Ellen’s integrity. It led to some tough years but she stayed true to herself. And she’s shown that being happy, funny and kind to people is cooler than pandering to the lowest common denominator.

8. Leonie Casanova – Because women who sing always make me melt, but add in a woman who writes her own words and music, and looks like a supermodel. We used her songs in both movies and get emails daily about "Broken," "Little Feeling" and "Holy Daughter." A genuine talent and a lovely soul.

9. Mélanie Laurent – Brought a dose of reality to the intentionally over the top Inglorious Basterds. French accent. She can act. Must I justify it more?

10. Julie Christie – That shot of her eyes in a shaft of sunlight in Dr. Zhivago is an iconic cinematic moment. But more than that, at the age of 69, she exudes intelligence and elegance and beauty as she takes on challenging roles.

Julie Christie

Ky Dickens (Director, Fish Out of Water) selected:

1. Jennifer Knapp – For risking the alienation of her core followers for coming out.

2. Nicole Opper – She’s the director of Off and Running, the most beautiful documentary I’ve seen this past year.

3. Orly Ravid – Critical in queer indy film. She has a hand in almost every lesbian backed film whether it’s in the festival circuit or in distribution.

4. Rachael Cantu – Because she’s one of the most kind and glowing indy queer musicians out there and has an honest, raw songwriting style.

Rachael Cantu

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