Top 10 TV Shows That Should Go to the Movies

by Kali Tuttle
TV Shows

Teen Titans Go! To the Movies (2018) looks like a promising adaptation of a TV show to a film. However, I don’t really care for it because I never watched Teen Titans.  But I am quite intrigued by the idea of a TV show becoming a movie. A lot of times, it’s the other way around — movies becoming TV shows, like MAS*H or Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 

But there’s so much potential for many TV shows to become successful films, especially TV shows that drag out their plot from episode to episode, leaving you on a cliffhanger each time (calling out a few TV shows here — you know who you are). Here are some of my picks for what TV shows I think would make great movies.

Honorable Mentions

The Sopranos (1999-2007)

Breaking Bad (2008-2013)

Stranger Things (2016-Present)

Halt and Catch Fire (2017-2017)

Dexter (2006-2013)

Supernatural (2005-Present)

American Horror Story (2011-Present)

The Newsroom (2012-2014)

Mad Men (2007-2015)

Seinfeld (1989-1998)

#10: Glee (2009-2015)

I’ll admit that the show itself was — how shall I put it? — stupid. Way too cheesy and dramatic for my tastes. But the musical numbers were on point, which is why I think this deserves to become a movie. The plot would go like this: the Glee club signs up for a singing competition and has to overcome the differences among them to win the show, a la Pitch Perfect (2012). We would see the return of Lea Michele, Matthew Morrison, and Chris Colfer and some new actors for different character (maybe even someone to replace Cory Monteith, rest his soul). Plus, it’d be fun to stop tiptoeing around relationships like TV shows do and just have our favorite characters get together at last; movies don’t have time to dance around the will-they-or-won’t-they dynamic.

TV Shows

Image via Daily Beast

#9: Lost (2004-2010)

Lost movie would probably be pretty intense, but it would sure be a fun ride. It’d be a lot like Cast Away (2000), only with a larger cast which creates more competing egos. Honestly, Lost would have made a better movie in the first place because it’s hard to have drama drag out for that long (some people enjoy it, but I don’t). And it would be a great vehicle for an all-star cast with actual diversity. Imagine not having to wait another week to find out if they ever make it off the island; imagine being able to start the adventure and end it all in one day.

TV Shows

Image via Nerdist

#8: The Handmaid’s Tale (2017-Present)

While The Handmaid’s Tale is far from seeing a finale in its future, I also think this is one of those TV shows that would have done better as a movie. I understand that some people love these depressing dramas that drag out year after year, but I can only stand so much sadness. The whole plot of a dystopian future where women are concubines and the world is a theocracy just sounds horrible to watch week after week. I would much rather watch a film where we see how bad it is, the main characters kick some butt and better their situation, and everyone is happy at the end. Wouldn’t that be better?

TV Shows

Image via Metro

#7: Supergirl (2015-Present)

Superhero movies are all the rage right now, so this one just seemed like a logical choice. We always hear about Superman saving the world, but we never hear about his cousin, Kara Danvers, AKA Supergirl. Plus, Supergirl focuses on a female protagonist, which is a hot topic right now, especially in the world of superheroes. A Supergirl movie could bring fame to a new young actress in the world of Hollywood as well. After all, how many of us knew who Henry Cavill or Gal Gadot really were before Man of Steel (2013) or Wonder Woman (2017)? Supergirl would be the perfect summer blockbuster.

TV Shows

Image via Entertainment Weekly

#6: The Walking Dead (2010-Present)

There’s been a shortage of awesome zombie movies coming out lately, minus World War Z (2013). It’s time for Hollywood to get on that. What better way to do that than to Rick Grimes, Daryl Dixon, and Carl Grimes to the big screen? Once again, The Walking Dead would do better as a movie anyway, as it’s not dragging out the depressing drama week after week. This is how I envision the plot: zombie apocalypse hits. Rick and his small band of survivors set out to find a cure, fighting off zombies and hostile survivors. It’d be action-packed, but there’d at least be an end in sight and you wouldn’t feel like you’re on a cliffhanger when it ends.

TV Shows

Image via The Verge

#5: The X-Files (1993-Present)

One word: aliens. You can’t go wrong with aliens in a movie. Plus, The X-Files has the potential to go one of two ways with its genre — it could either be a creepy supernatural horror or an intense alien thriller. Either way, it’d be a great watch. I’d be especially curious as to who would play Detectives Scully and Mulder. My personal picks would be Nathan Fillion and Jessica Alba, as both have proven their strength in the science-fiction genre. However, I’m not going to be too picky — as long as this film gets made, I’ll be very happy. Yes, a movie was already made before, but a new creative team and cast would breathe some new life into the property.

TV Shows

Image via IMDB

#4: Band of Brothers (2001)

It always irked me that this mini-series wasn’t originally made into a film. I don’t want to watch episode after episode of World War II. I just want to watch a movie about it. Nevertheless, I quite enjoy it and want it to be a movie. It’s a lot like Saving Private Ryan (1998), which is probably why I enjoy it so much. Plus, another great opportunity for an all-star cast! Imagine all the cameos you could have and all the new actors you could introduce to the world; imagine all the veteran actors you could get together for a film like this. It seriously astounds me as to how this was never made into a film originally.

TV Shows

Image via HBO

#3: Firefly (2002-2003)

Hollywood’s biggest mistake was cancelling this show. The combination of Nathan Fillion, Morena Baccarin, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk, and Adam Baldwin was the best thing that ever happened to sci-fi TV. The least we could do is give it a movie, since we already did it the biggest injustice. A Firefly movie could even reunite all the original characters. It’d be like Star Wars with a Western twist and less Darth Vader. There’s something wrong with the world when great shows like this get cancelled and horrible ones like 13 Reasons Why are renewed for second seasons. We already have Serenity, but let’s be honest, they only made the film to clean up loose ends, not to reinvigorate the material.

TV Shows

Image via The Verge

#2: House of Cards (2013-Present)

Maybe I’m just way too into politics, but House of Cards would make a spectacular film. The plot is already spot on: a crooked congressman and his wife get revenge on people who have betrayed them. Imagine all the thrilling bloody content that could be compressed into just a few hours. That is the kind of content I look for in political drama. It already has all the theatrics in the story right there. All it needs now is some veteran actors to pull it off. My picks? Alec Baldwin and Uma Thurman. Neither are strangers to thrillers, nor are they strangers to violence.

TV Shows

Image via The Hollywood Reporter

#1: Game of Thrones (2011-Present)

Honestly, who doesn’t want a Game of Thrones movie? Sure, it’s fun to watch the same dark drama week after week, but imagine having all of it shoved in your face at once. That would be quite the film. Of course, it would have all the gratuitous violence that GoT fans expect, but it wouldn’t have that annoying drawn-out suspense. You could watch it all in one go and actually be satisfied for once. All your favorite characters would be there: the Lannisters, the Starks, maybe even Jon Snow. This would be the epic of the decade. Get on it, Hollywood.

TV Shows

Image via Fansided

Thank you for reading! What are you thoughts on top 10 TV shows that should be movies? Did we miss any? Comment down below!

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Vuava September 1, 2018 - 8:43 am

Also “Supergirl” in 1984, and two X Files movies.

Vuava September 1, 2018 - 8:41 am

“Handmaids Tale” already has a film adaptation, done way before the TV series, in 1990.

The Inner Circle July 31, 2018 - 11:02 am

All these would fail simply because in the TV format they have the time for the story to told without being rushed. Can you really see any of series outside of “Firefly” in a stand alone film? Me neither….

Kali Tuttle July 31, 2018 - 9:04 pm

I mean, I could, but I also wrote the article so that could be part of it lol but I have a preference for movies over TV anyway

psoans July 29, 2018 - 12:50 pm

I like Supergirl but even if they do I do not think that Melissa Benoist would play the part in the D.C. Extended Universe. The greatest potential for a D.C. character being made into a movie is Legends of Tomorrow. I would love to see a movie based on the Bodyline series which starred Hugo Weaving.

femalesformingsentences July 29, 2018 - 10:03 am

Great choices here! Reminded me to watch the Handmaids Tale!

The Geeky Reviewer July 28, 2018 - 7:07 pm

Really strong choices here! Band of Brothers would make for a great film adaptation, though I’m not sure just how much more they can tell about those characters. Perhaps a completely new story, in similar fashion to The Pacific. As for Sopranos, it seems to be getting the prequel film ‘The Many Saints of Newark’ next year so that’s defintely a likely possibility.

I’d like to add another Fargo movie onto that list (as I feel the anthology series may have ignited new creativity into making another film), Legion and True Detective, which has a very has a similar anthology approach to Fargo where anything is possible in the timeframe and it wouldn’t be beyond the narrative boundaries to do it.

steveforthedeaf July 28, 2018 - 4:48 pm

This is some clever ironic thing right? I’ve seen almost all of these movies

Kali Tuttle July 31, 2018 - 9:06 pm

Well, you may have seen movies like it but I want movies that are basically branches of the TV show. I agree a lot of these films have basically been made though

18cinemalane July 28, 2018 - 4:18 pm

Interesting list, Kali! Out of the shows you mentioned, I could definitely see Supergirl, Band of Brothers, and possibly Games of Thrones being adapted for the big screen. If I could add a show to the list, I would add a sci-fi show called Warehouse 13.

Nick Kush July 28, 2018 - 1:05 pm

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