films The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians

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List Rules Dramatic or serious films with a traditionally comic actor in a lead role

Dramatic movies starring comedians, ranked by comedy and film fans. Often, after making a name for themselves appearing in wacky or silly movies, comics will purposefully take on a more serious role, often in an attempt to show off their range. Comics like Jim Carrey, Adam Sandler and Robin Williams are all noted for their tendency to alternate between funny and more serious roles (with Williams at some points in his career altogether abandoning comedies in favor of dramas.)

Often, fans are initially resistant to attempts by comedians to change around their style or appeal to new audiences. Sometimes, the experiments blatantly don't work out, with viewers unable to see their favorite funny performers in a new light. But other times, the decision to switch gears in favor of working in a drama pays off for a comedian, sometimes even resulting in award nominations or greater appreciation from acting peers. (As when Eddie Murphy was nominated for an Oscar - and won a Golden Globe - for his role in the musical "Dreamgirls" after years of being written off as the star of goofy features like "Nutty Professor" and "Norbit.")

What are the best serious movies starring comedians? Vote for your favorite serious dramatic films starring comedians. And if your favorite comic-starring drama isn't featured, make your own list and add it as a suggestion!

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Good Will Hunting Robin Williams

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2
+ - 346 104
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotle... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians

3
+ - 278 68
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Dead Poets Society Robin Williams

4
+ - 342 103
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The Truman Show Jim Carrey

5
+ - 245 89
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Little Miss Sunshine Steve Carrell

6
+ - 170 98
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Lost in Translation Bill Murray

7
+ - 126 71
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Ray Jamie Foxx

8
+ - 172 88
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Stranger than Fiction Will Ferrell

9
+ - 91 89
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Being There Peter Sellers

10
+ - 106 68
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The Fisher King Robin Williams

11
+ - 122 95
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Man on the Moon Jim Carrey

12
+ - 114 79
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Rushmore Bill Murray

13
+ - 158 94
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+ - 102 92
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Punch-Drunk Love Adam Sandler

15
+ - 79 24
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Awakenings Robin Williams

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+ - 87 39
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Patch Adams Robin Williams

17
+ - 80 35
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One Hour Photo Robin Williams

18
+ - 58 72
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The King of Comedy Jerry Lewis

19
+ - 85 61
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Insomnia Robin Williams

20
+ - 59 48
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Enemy of the State Will Smith

21
+ - 36 11
Batman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
Batman Michael Keaton

22
+ - 59 50
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Reign Over Me Adam Sandler

23
+ - 56 49
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Seven Pounds Will Smith

24
+ - 48 78
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Broken Flowers Bill Murray

25
+ - 60 74
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Dreamgirls Jamie Foxx, Eddie Murphy

26
+ - 58 50
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The Number 23 Jim Carrey

27
+ - 19 30
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The Majestic Jim Carrey, Matt Damon, Rob Reiner

28
+ - 52 54
King Kong is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
King Kong Jack Black

29
+ - 6 4
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Birdman Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis

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30
+ - 51 69
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Funny People Adam Sandler, Seth Rogen

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+ - 45 67
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32
+ - 7 14
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Crimes and Misdemeanors Woody Allen, Daryl Hannah, Mia Farrow

33
+ - 32 69
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The Spanish Prisoner Steve Martin

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+ - 5 14
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Grand Canyon Steve Martin, Kevin Kline, Mary-Louise Parker

35
+ - 30 64
Big Fan is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
Big Fan Patton Oswalt

36
+ - 18 9
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Collateral Jamie Foxx

37
+ - 4 12
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A Face in the Crowd Andy Griffith, Walter Matthau, Lee Remick

38
+ - 16 12
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The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe

39
+ - 37 70
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40
+ - 16 16
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Everything Must Go Will Ferrell

41
+ - 25 64
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Permanent Midnight Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson

42
+ - 26 63
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Mrs Brown Billy Connolly

43
+ - 12 1
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Life Is Beautiful Roberto Benigni

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+ - 13 10
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Leap of Faith Steve Martin

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+ - 10 8
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Clean and Sober Michael Keaton

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+ - 10 9
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Spanglish Adam Sandler, Sarah Hyland, Téa Leoni

47
+ - 3 1
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The Big Short Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Finn Wittrock - Steve Carell

48
+ - 3 3
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Shopgirl Claire Danes, Steve Martin, Rachel Nichols

49
+ - 6 11
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The Razor's Edge Bill Murray

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+ - 6 16
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Jakob the Liar Robin Williams, Liev Schreiber, Alan Arkin