watchworthy presents

The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars 

Ranker TV
Originally by
Updated February 21, 2020 5.7k votes 864 voters 12.8k views 45 items

List Rules Vote up the best current TV shows that feature actors who are usually in movies. Series must be currently airing new episodes on TV or a streaming service

Between cable, Netflix, and premium channels like HBO and Showtime, there are a lot of high budget shows out there nowadays. Television shows have bigger budgets than ever before and that has brought a lot of the Hollywood's most recognizable movie stars to the small screen. Danny DeVito, Zooey Deschanel, Don Cheadle, and many other big name movie stars are all currently trying their hand at television shows, most with considerable success.

Current entertainment is much different than it was just a decade or two ago and movie stars moving to TV is a relatively new phenomenon. Increases in budget and production value have incentivized movie stars to make the jump and many new shows have at least one movie star on the cast, if not more.

Film used to be in a league of its own. Whether it was actors, special effects, quality, or any number of other elements, it used to be easy to tell the difference between a movie and just another mediocre television show, sometimes from  a single frame. Now, those lines have been seriously blurred. Huge budget shows like Game of Thrones have proven that shows can be just as good, if not better, than movies. Then add all of the new shows from Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu into the equation and the television show landscape is in completely uncharted territory. Everywhere you look, there are movie stars on television.

Now, check out this list of the best current TV shows of 2019 starring movie stars and vote up the best of them all.

 

Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
list ordered by
1
The Blacklist is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
NBC

Actors: James Spader, Megan Boone, Diego Klattenhoff

Premiered: 2013

Genres (Tv): Crime Fiction, Drama

James Spader (Avengers: Age of Ultron, Wall Street, Pretty in Pink)
The Blacklist (NBC, 2013) is an American crime drama television series created by Jon Bokenkamp. Raymond "Red" Reddington, a former U.S Navy officer turned high-profile criminal, ...more

More The Blacklist 

#30 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate #7 of 132 The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows Ranking the Best Seasons of 'The Blacklist'

2
Fargo is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
AMC

Actors: Billy Bob Thornton, Allison Tolman, Colin Hanks, Martin Freeman, Kirsten Dunst, + more

Premiered: 2014

Number of Seasons: 3

Genres (Tv): Comedy, Drama, Crime

Ewan McGregor (Trainspotting, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Moulin Rouge) 

Fargo (FX, 2014) is an American black comedy drama anthology television series created by Noah Hawley, and inspired by the 1996 film. Various chronicles of deception, intrigue and wrong doings ...more

More Fargo 

#94 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years #80 of 158 Shows with the Best Freakin' Series Finales of All Time All of the Clever Easter Eggs Hiding in Fargo the TV Series

3
Westworld is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
LanaYoshii added HBO

Actors: Evan Rachel Wood, Thandie Newton, Jeffrey Wright, James Marsden, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, + more

Premiered: 2016

Number of Seasons: 3

Genres (Tv): Sci-fi, Drama, Western

Anthony Hopkins (Silence of the Lambs, Nixon, Thor, Meet Joe Black)

More Westworld 

#126 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years #31 of 312 The Best Sci Fi Television Series of All Time What To Remember Before 'Westworld' Season 3

4
Mr. Robot is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
LanaYoshii added USA

Actors: Rami Malek, Christian Slater, Portia Doubleday

Premiered: 2015

Number of Seasons: 2

Genres (Tv): Drama, Thriller

Christian Slater (Heathers, Pump Up the Volume) Mr. Robot (USA Network, 2015) is an American drama–thriller television series created by Sam Esmail. Elliot (Rami Malek), a cybersecurity engineer and hacker who suffers from social anxiety ...more

More Mr. Robot 

#8 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate #13 of 132 The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows Mr. Robot Easter Eggs

5
The Walking Dead is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
LanaYoshii added AMC

Actors: Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies, Laurie Holden, Jeffrey DeMunn, + more

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 10

Number of Episodes: 144

Genres (Tv): Apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic fiction, Suspense, Drama, Horror Film, Thriller, + more

Andrew Lincoln (Love Actually)

The Walking Dead (A&E, 2010) is an American post-apocalyptic horror television series developed by Frank Darabont, based on the comic book series by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, and Charlie ...more

More The Walking Dead 

#3 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #12 of 52 Which Nerd Favorite Has The Most Annoying Fans? The Most Brutal Kills on The Walking Dead

6
Shameless is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Showtime

Actors: Emmy Rossum, William H. Macy, Ethan Cutkosky

Premiered: 2011

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 36

Genres (Tv): Drama, Comedy

William H. Macy (Fargo, Pleasantville)
Shameless is an American television comedy-drama which airs on Showtime. This remake of the award-winning British series is set in Chicago's Canaryville neighborhood on the South Side, although ...more

More Shameless 

#35 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #92 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years Every Season of 'Shameless', Ranked Best to Worst

7
Ray Donovan is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Showtime

Actors: Liev Schreiber, Paula Malcomson, Eddie Marsan

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 12

Genres (Tv): Crime, Drama, Action

Liev Schreiber (Lee Daniel's The Butler, Salt, X-Men Origins: Wolverine)
Ray Donovan (Showtime, 2013) is an American drama television series created by Ann Biderman. Ray Donovan, a professional "fixer" for the rich and famous in Los Angeles, can make ...more

More Ray Donovan 

#139 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #157 of 571 TV Shows Canceled Before Their Time Ranking the Best Seasons of 'Ray Donovan'

8
Brooklyn Nine-Nine is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
LanaYoshii added NBC

Actors: Andy Samberg, Stephanie Beatriz, Terry Crews, Melissa Fumero, Joe Lo Truglio, + more

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 1

Genres (Tv): Comedy, Sitcom

Andre Braugher (Duets, Frequency) Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Fox, NBC 2013) is an American police television sitcom created by Dan Goor and Michael Schur. Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg), an immature but talented NYPD detective in ...more

More Brooklyn Nine-Nine 

#107 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years #325 of 590 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time The Best Characters On 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine'

9
Elementary is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
voting closed at #11 LanaYoshii added CBS

Actors: Jonny Lee Miller, Lucy Liu, Jon Michael Hill, Aidan Quinn, John Noble, + more

Premiered: 2012

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 24

Genres (Tv): Crime Fiction, Drama, Mystery

Jonny Lee Miller (Mansfield Park, Hackers)

Elementary (CBS, 2012) is an American procedural drama series created by Robert Doherty, based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's character Sherlock Holmes. Following his fall from grace in London and ...more

More Elementary 

#148 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #128 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years The Best Characters On 'Elementary'

10
Preacher is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
voting closed at #12 LanaYoshii added

Actors: Dominic Cooper, Joseph Gilgun, Ruth Negga

Premiered: 2016

Genres (Tv): Drama, Black Comedy, Supernatural, Horror, Action

Dominic Cooper (Dracula Untold, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) Preacher (AMC, 2016) is an American television series developed by Sam Catlin, Evan Goldberg, and Seth Rogen, based on the comic book series created by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon. After a ...more

More Preacher 

#68 of 143 The Best Comic Book & Superhero Shows of All Time #6 of 12 The Best Fictional Representations Of Purgatory In Modern Pop Culture Rank These Custom "Preacher" Comic Book Covers

11
How to Get Away with Mur... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
ABC

Actors: Viola Davis, Billy Brown, Alfred Enoch, Katie Findlay, Jack Falahee, + more

Premiered: 2014

Genres (Tv): Drama, Crime, Legal drama

Viola Davis ( The Help, Prisoners)
How to Get Away with Murder (ABC, 2014) is an American legal thriller television series created by Peter Nowalk. A law professor (Viola Davis) at a prestigious Philadelphia university and five ...more

More How to Get Away with Murder 

#119 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #79 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate The Best Characters On 'How To Get Away With Murder'

12
Homeland is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
LanaYoshii added Showtime

Actors: Claire Danes, Mandy Patinkin, Rupert Friend

Premiered: 2011

Number of Seasons: 3

Genres (Tv): Suspense, Drama, Psychological thriller, Mystery, Thriller

Claire Danes (Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Les Misérables) Homeland (Showtime, 2011) is an American political drama thriller series developed by Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa based on the Israeli series Hatufim, which was created by Gideon Raff. The ...more

More Homeland 

#37 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #51 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate The Best Homeland Characters of All Time

13
Designated Survivor is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
LanaYoshii added Netflix

Actors: Kiefer Sutherland, Maggie Q, Natascha McElhone, Kal Penn

Premiered: 2016

Genres (Tv): Political Thriller

Kiefer Sutherland (Lost Boys, Stand By Me, Dark City)

Designated Survivor (ABC, 2016; Netflix, 2019) is an American political conspiracy drama television series. On the night of the State of the Union address, an incident claims the lives of the ...more

More Designated Survivor 

#561 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #19 of 57 The Best (and Worst) TV Shows Ending in 2018

14
Gypsy is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
lloydc added Netflix

Actors: Naomi Watts, Billy Crudup, Sophie Cookson, Lucy Boynton, Karl Glusman, + more

Premiered: 2017

Gypsy is a television drama series created by Lisa Rubin for Netflix. Naomi Watts plays a therapist who begins to develop dangerous and intimate relationships with the people in her patients’

More Gypsy 

#356 of 571 TV Shows Canceled Before Their Time #284 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate

15
American Crime Story is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
FX

Actors: Sterling K. Brown, Kenneth Choi, Christian Clemenson, Cuba Gooding Jr., Bruce Greenwood, + more

Premiered: 2016

Genres (Tv): True crime, Drama, Anthology

American Crime Story (FX, 2016) is an American anthology television series Scott Alexander, Larry Karaszewski, and Tom Rob Smith. Each season is presented as a self-contained miniseries, ...more

More American Crime Story 

#289 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate #2 of 29 The Best "American" TV Shows

16
It's Always Sunny in Phi... is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
FXX

Actors: Charlie Day, Glenn Howerton, Rob McElhenney, Kaitlin Olson, Danny DeVito

Premiered: 2005

Number of Seasons: 7

Number of Episodes: 94

Genres (Tv): Black comedy, Television comedy, Sitcom, Comedy

Danny DeVito (Batman Returns, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, L.A. Confidential)
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (FXX, 2005) is an American television sitcom created by Rob McElhenney. The series follows "The Gang", a group of five depraved underachievers: twins ...more

More It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia 

#55 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #33 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years 30 Dope Facts You Didn't Know About It's Always Sunny

17
Billions is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Showtime

Actors: Damian Lewis, Paul Giamatti, Maggie Siff, Malin Åkerman, Toby Leonard Moore, + more

Premiered: 2016

Genres (Tv): Drama

Paul Giamatti (Sideways, Saving Private Ryan, Rock of Ages)
Billions (Showtime, 2016) is loosely based on the activities of crusading federal prosecutor Preet Bharara, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. Bobby "Axe" Axelrod ...more

More Billions 

#203 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #234 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate The Best Seasons of 'Billions'

18
Ballers is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
HBO

Actors: Dwayne Johnson, Rob Corddry, John David Washington, Omar Miller, Donovan W. Carter, + more

Genres (Tv): Comedy

Dwayne Johnson (Fast & Furious 6, The Scorpion King, San Andreas)
Ballers (HBO, 2015) is an American comedy-drama television series created by Stephen Levinson. Former football superstar Spencer Strasmore (Dwayne Johnson) tries to find success as a financial ...more

More Ballers 

#279 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #881 of 1,328 The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows

19
The Wire is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Mary S Spiegel added BBC Four, HBO

Actors: Dominic West, Lance Reddick, Sonja Sohn

Premiered: 2002

Number of Seasons: 5

Number of Episodes: 60

Genres (Tv): Crime Fiction, Police procedural, Drama

The Wire (HBO, 2002) is an American crime drama television series created and written by David Simon. The series features the Baltimore drug scene, as seen through the eyes of drug dealers and ...more

More The Wire 

#20 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years #342 of 590 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time The Best Things Cast Members of The Wire Have Done Since the Genius Show Ended

20
Godfather of Harlem is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Epix

Actors: Forest Whitaker, Vincent D'Onofrio, Ilfenesh Hadera, Antoinette Crowe-Legacy, Nigél Thatch, + more

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Crime drama

Movie Star: Forest Whitaker (The Butler, The Last King of Scotland, Arrival)

Godfather of Harlem (Epix, 2019) is an American crime drama television series. After being released from prison, crime boss Bumpy Johnson (Forest Whitaker) takes on the Genovese crime family to ...more
21
Grace and Frankie is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Mary S Spiegel added Netflix

Actors: Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Sam Waterston, Martin Sheen, Brooklyn Decker, + more

Premiered: 2015

Number of Seasons: 6

Number of Episodes: 78

Genres (Tv): Comedy

Grace and Frankie (Netflix, 2015) is an American comedy-drama web television series created by Marta Kauffman and Howard J. Morris. Finding out that their husbands have been romantically ...more

More Grace and Frankie 

#189 of 295 The Greatest Sitcoms in Television History #11 of 271 The Best Female-Led TV Shows Ranking the Best Seasons of 'Grace and Frankie'

22
Carnival Row is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Amazon Video

Actors: Orlando Bloom, Cara Delevingne, Waj Ali

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Fantasy, Neo-noir

Orlando Bloom (Lord Of The Rings Trilogy, Pirates of the Caribbean franchise)

Carnival Row (Amazon Video, 2019) is an American neo-noir fantasy web television series created by René Echevarria and Travis Beacham. As a serial killer preys on mystical creatures in a ...more

More Carnival Row 

#637 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #64 of 104 The Best Fantasy TV Shows #19 of 29 The Best Neo-noir TV Shows

23
Catch-22 is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Hulu

Actors: Christopher Abbott, Kyle Chandler, Hugh Laurie, George Clooney

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Drama

Movie Star: George Clooney (Hail, Caesar!,O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Ocean's Eleven)

Catch-22 (Hulu, 2019) is an American-Italian drama miniseries, based on the novel of the same name by Joseph Heller. Following the story of Yossarian (Christopher Abbott), a US Air Force ...more
24
The Witcher is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Netflix

Actors: Henry Cavill, Freya Allan, Anya Chalotra, Anna Shaffer

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Fantasy, Action, Adventure, Drama

Henry Cavill (The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Mission: Impossible – Fallout, Man Of Steel)

The Witcher (Netflix, 2019) is a fantasy action-adventure series based on the series of short stories and novels by Andrzej Sapkowski. Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill), a solitary monster hunter, ...more

More The Witcher 

#4 of 8 In Case You Missed It: The Biggest Horror News From Jan. 20 - 24 #7 of 8 In Case You Missed It: The Biggest Horror News From Jan. 26 - 31 33 More Pieces Of 'Witcher' Fan Art

25
Catherine the Great is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Current TV Shows Starring Movie Stars
Sky Atlantic, HBO

Actors: Helen Mirren, Jason Clarke, Joseph Quinn, Gina McKee, Rory Kinnear, + more

Genres (Tv): Drama

Helen Mirren (The Queen, Teaching Mrs. Tingle, Red)

Catherine the Great (Sky Atlantic/HBO, 2019) is a British-American television miniseries following the life of Catherine The Great.