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

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Dead Poets Society Robin Williams

4
+ - 341 103
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The Truman Show Jim Carrey

5
+ - 244 89
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Little Miss Sunshine Steve Carrell

6
+ - 169 98
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Lost in Translation Bill Murray

7
+ - 126 70
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Ray Jamie Foxx

8
+ - 171 88
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Stranger than Fiction Will Ferrell

9
+ - 91 88
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Being There Peter Sellers

10
+ - 105 68
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The Fisher King Robin Williams

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+ - 121 95
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Man on the Moon Jim Carrey

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+ - 158 93
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Rushmore Bill Murray

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+ - 101 92
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Punch-Drunk Love Adam Sandler

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+ - 79 23
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Awakenings Robin Williams

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Patch Adams Robin Williams

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+ - 80 34
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One Hour Photo Robin Williams

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+ - 58 71
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The King of Comedy Jerry Lewis

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Enemy of the State Will Smith

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+ - 85 60
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Insomnia Robin Williams

21
+ - 36 10
Batman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
Batman Michael Keaton

22
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Reign Over Me Adam Sandler

23
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Seven Pounds Will Smith

24
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Broken Flowers Bill Murray

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Dreamgirls Jamie Foxx, Eddie Murphy

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The Number 23 Jim Carrey

27
+ - 52 53
King Kong is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
King Kong Jack Black

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The Majestic Jim Carrey, Matt Damon, Rob Reiner

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Life Is Beautiful Roberto Benigni

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Birdman Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis

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Funny People Adam Sandler, Seth Rogen

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Crimes and Misdemeanors Woody Allen, Daryl Hannah, Mia Farrow

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The Spanish Prisoner Steve Martin

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Grand Canyon Steve Martin, Kevin Kline, Mary-Louise Parker

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A Face in the Crowd Andy Griffith, Walter Matthau, Lee Remick

37
+ - 29 64
Big Fan is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
Big Fan Patton Oswalt

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Collateral Jamie Foxx

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The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe

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Everything Must Go Will Ferrell

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+ - 24 64
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Permanent Midnight Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson

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+ - 26 62
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Mrs Brown Billy Connolly

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Clean and Sober Michael Keaton

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Leap of Faith Steve Martin

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Spanglish Adam Sandler, Sarah Hyland, Téa Leoni

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The Big Short Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Finn Wittrock - Steve Carell

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Shopgirl Claire Danes, Steve Martin, Rachel Nichols

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The Razor's Edge Bill Murray

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Jakob the Liar Robin Williams, Liev Schreiber, Alan Arkin