films The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians  

Originally by
7.6k votes 983 voters 58k views 53 items Follow Embed

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!
list ordered by

1
+ - 384 71
Ranker Video v
Good Will Hunting Robin Williams

The Best Comedian Biopics The Best Dogs for City Living

2
+ - 374 111
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotle... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians

3
+ - 306 74
Ranker Video v
Dead Poets Society Robin Williams

4
+ - 367 112
Ranker Video v
The Truman Show Jim Carrey

5
+ - 268 93
Ranker Video v
Little Miss Sunshine Steve Carrell

6
+ - 185 105
Ranker Video v
Lost in Translation Bill Murray

7
+ - 140 73
Ranker Video v
Ray Jamie Foxx

8
+ - 188 93
Ranker Video v
Stranger than Fiction Will Ferrell

9
+ - 116 72
Ranker Video v
The Fisher King Robin Williams

10
+ - 135 99
Ranker Video v
Man on the Moon Jim Carrey

11
+ - 96 93
Ranker Video v
Being There Peter Sellers

12
+ - 122 81
Ranker Video v
Rushmore Bill Murray

13
+ - 169 99
Ranker Video v

14
+ - 91 27
Ranker Video v
Awakenings Robin Williams

15
+ - 110 98
Ranker Video v
Punch-Drunk Love Adam Sandler

The Best Stand-Up Comedy Movies on Netflix Instant The Best Movies Roger Ebert Gave Four Stars

16
+ - 97 43
Ranker Video v
Patch Adams Robin Williams

17
+ - 91 38
Ranker Video v
One Hour Photo Robin Williams

18
+ - 54 13
Batman is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
Batman Michael Keaton

19
+ - 61 76
Ranker Video v
The King of Comedy Jerry Lewis

20
+ - 66 49
Ranker Video v
Enemy of the State Will Smith

21
+ - 93 63
Ranker Video v
Insomnia Robin Williams

22
+ - 66 53
Ranker Video v
Reign Over Me Adam Sandler

23
+ - 64 52
Ranker Video v
Seven Pounds Will Smith

24
+ - 52 82
Ranker Video v
Broken Flowers Bill Murray

25
+ - 66 76
Ranker Video v
Dreamgirls Jamie Foxx, Eddie Murphy

26
+ - 63 55
Ranker Video v
The Number 23 Jim Carrey

27
+ - 17 7
Ranker Video v
Birdman Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis

28
+ - 21 34
Ranker Video v
The Majestic Jim Carrey, Matt Damon, Rob Reiner

29
+ - 54 57
King Kong is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
King Kong Jack Black

The Sexiest Characters in Comedies The Best Things About Fall

30
+ - 56 72
Ranker Video v
Funny People Adam Sandler, Seth Rogen

31
+ - 49 69
Ranker Video v

32
+ - 8 16
Ranker Video v
Crimes and Misdemeanors Woody Allen, Daryl Hannah, Mia Farrow

33
+ - 34 71
Ranker Video v
The Spanish Prisoner Steve Martin

34
+ - 22 10
Ranker Video v
Collateral Jamie Foxx

35
+ - 7 17
Ranker Video v
Grand Canyon Steve Martin, Kevin Kline, Mary-Louise Parker

36
+ - 21 14
Ranker Video v
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe

37
+ - 31 66
Big Fan is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Serious Movies Starring Comedians
Big Fan Patton Oswalt

38
+ - 4 14
Ranker Video v
A Face in the Crowd Andy Griffith, Walter Matthau, Lee Remick

39
+ - 38 71
Ranker Video v

40
+ - 17 19
Ranker Video v
Everything Must Go Will Ferrell

41
+ - 28 66
Ranker Video v
Permanent Midnight Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson

42
+ - 19 3
Ranker Video v
Life Is Beautiful Roberto Benigni

43
+ - 26 65
Ranker Video v
Mrs Brown Billy Connolly

The Best Netflix Original Movies The Best ABC Dramas of All Time

44
+ - 17 12
Ranker Video v
Leap of Faith Steve Martin

45
+ - 14 10
Ranker Video v
Clean and Sober Michael Keaton

46
+ - 5 0
Ranker Video v
MASH Robert Duvall, Donald Sutherland, Elliott Gould

47
+ - 15 13
Ranker Video v
Spanglish Adam Sandler, Sarah Hyland, Téa Leoni

48
+ - 5 3
Ranker Video v
The Big Short Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Finn Wittrock - Steve Carell

49
+ - 3 2
Ranker Video v
Arthur Liza Minnelli, Dudley Moore, John Gielgud

50
+ - 2 2
Ranker Video v
Foul Play Goldie Hawn, Chevy Chase, Dudley Moore