The original 1969 version of the film, which famously saw a gang of criminals take to the streets of Turin in Minis to steal a van full of gold, took 15% of the votes in the poll of 1,000 film fans, putting it ahead of Monty Python’s Life of Brian (7%) and The Full Monty (6%).
Anthony Hopkins was voted the greatest British actor with 12% of the vote followed closely by Laurence Olivier (10%) and The Italian Job’s original lead Michael Caine (9%).
Dame Judi Dench was firm favourite as the greatest British actress and collected a quarter of the votes with her closest rival, Dame Helen Mirren, winning 14% of the votes.
Colin Firth, tipped to pick up an Oscar later this year for his performance in The King’s Speech, and Keira Knightley won Best supporting actor and actress respectively. Master of suspense Hitchcock was voted the best British director. The man behind classics like Psycho, The Birds and Rear Window, picked up a quarter of the votes cast.
The poll was commissioned by Sky Movies HD to mark the launch of their British Film Season later this month.
Ian Lewis, director of Sky Movies, said: “The results of the Greatest British Film poll speak volumes about the nation’s favourite home-grown talent, and the dream line-up would be a truly spectacular film.
“As we approach awards season and the competition escalates, we wanted to celebrate the best of British talent with a season dedicated to it. We’ve chosen a selection of classics and new titles which represent the nation and we are rooting for the likes of Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter and Christopher Nolan during this year’s awards.”