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The Best William Petersen Movies

Updated September 21, 2019 572 votes 95 voters 8.6k views25 items

List RulesVote for your favorite movies, regardless of critic reviews or how big the role was.

List of the best William Petersen movies, ranked best to worst with movie trailers when available. William Petersen's highest grossing movies have received a lot of accolades over the years, earning millions upon millions around the world. The order of these top William Petersen movies is decided by how many votes they receive, so only highly rated William Petersen movies will be at the top of the list. William Petersen has been in a lot of films, so people often debate each other over what the greatest William Petersen movie of all time is. If you and a friend are arguing about this then use this list of the most entertaining William Petersen films to end the squabble once and for all.

If you think the best William Petersen role isn't at the top, then upvote it so it has the chance to become number one. The greatest William Petersen performances didn't necessarily come from the best movies, but in most cases they go hand in hand.

Examples of films on this list: Cousins, To Live and Die in L.A. and more.

"This list answers the questions, "What are the best William Petersen movies?" and "What are the greatest William Petersen roles of all time?"

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  • 1
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    4

    Manhunter

    Brian Cox, Garcelle Beauvais

    Released1986

    Directed byMichael Mann

    Manhunter is a 1986 American thriller film based on Thomas Harris' novel Red Dragon. Written and directed by Michael Mann, it stars William Petersen as Will Graham and features Brian Cox as Hannibal...  more
  • 2
    27
    6

    Young Guns II

    Viggo Mortensen, Kiefer Sutherland

    Released1990

    Directed byGeoff Murphy

    Young Guns II is a 1990 western film, and the sequel to Young Guns. It stars Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Sutherland, Lou Diamond Phillips, Christian Slater, and features William Petersen. It was written...  more

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  • 3
    24
    9

    To Live and Die in L.A.

    Willem Dafoe, John Turturro

    Released1985

    Directed byWilliam Friedkin

    This film is a 1985 American action thriller film directed by William Friedkin and based on the novel by former U.S. Secret Service agent Gerald Petievich, who co-wrote the screenplay with Friedkin....  more

    More To Live and Die in L.A. 

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  • 4
    21
    8

    Gunshy

    Diane Lane, Meat Loaf

    Released1998

    Directed byJeff Celentano

    Gunshy is an American 1998 crime drama film directed by Jeff Celentano and starring William Petersen, Michael Wincott, and Diane Lane....  more
  • 5
    24
    15

    The Skulls

    Malin Åkerman, Paul Walker

    Released2000

    Directed byRob Cohen

    The Skulls is a 2000 American psychological thriller film starring Joshua Jackson, Paul Walker and Leslie Bibb, directed by Rob Cohen. Its plot is based upon some of the conspiracy theories...  more
  • 6
    15
    6

    Kiss the Sky

    Terence Stamp, Gary Cole

    Released1999

    Directed byRoger Young

    Kiss the Sky is a 1999 film drama directed by Roger Young. The plot follows two men in their forties, friends since college, who travel together on a business trip to the Philippines. There they...  more
  • 7
    14
    8

    In the Kingdom of the Blind, the Man with One Eye Is King

    Michael Biehn, Paul Winfield

    Released1995

    Directed byNick Vallelonga

    In the Kingdom of the Blind, the Man with One Eye Is King is a 1995 film written and directed by Nick Vallelonga....
  • 8
    19
    15

    The Staircase

    Barbara Hershey, Diane Ladd

    Released1998

    Directed byKaren Arthur

    The Staircase is a 1998 television film....  more
  • 9
    16
    12

    The Contender

    Gary Oldman, Jeff Bridges

    Released2000

    Directed byRod Lurie

    The Contender is a 2000 political drama film written and directed by Rod Lurie. It stars Gary Oldman, Joan Allen, Jeff Bridges and Christian Slater. The film focuses on a fictional United States...  more
  • 10
    10
    6

    12 Angry Men

    Jack Lemmon, James Gandolfini

    Released1997

    Directed byWilliam Friedkin

    12 Angry Men is a 1997 television film directed by William Friedkin, adapted from the Reginald Rose teleplay of the same title. It is a remake of the film of 1957....  more
  • 11
    14
    13

    The Beast

    William Petersen, Adrienne-Joi Johnson

    Released1996

    Directed byJeff Bleckner

    The Beast is a 1996 television movie starring William Petersen, Karen Sillas and Charles Martin Smith. Aired in two parts as a miniseries, the movie is based on the 1991 novel Beast by Jaws author...  more
  • 12
    10
    10

    Cousins

    Isabella Rossellini, Ted Danson

    Released1989

    Directed byJoel Schumacher

    Cousins is a 1989 American romantic comedy film directed by Joel Schumacher and starring Ted Danson, Isabella Rossellini, Sean Young, William Petersen, Keith Coogan, Lloyd Bridges and Norma Aleandro....  more
  • 13
    0
    5

    Haven

    Anne Bancroft, Martin Landau

    Released2001

    Directed byJohn Gray

    Haven is a 2001 historical drama film written by Suzette Couture and directed by John Gray....  more
  • 14
    7
    6

    Long Gone

    Virginia Madsen, Dermot Mulroney

    Released1987

    Directed byMartin Davidson

    Long Gone is a 1987 baseball film by HBO that is based on Paul Hemphill's 1979 book of the same name. The made-for-television film was directed by Martin Davidson and starred William Petersen,...  more
  • 15
    15
    17

    Fear

    Reese Witherspoon, Alyssa Milano

    Released1996

    Directed byJames Foley

    Fear is a 1996 American thriller drama film directed by James Foley. It was written by Christopher Crowe, who created the TV series B.L. Stryker, The Watcher, B.J. and the Bear and Seven Days. The...  more

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  • 16
    8
    8

    Keep the Change

    Jack Palance, Fred Thompson

    Released1992

    Directed byAndy Tennant

    Keep the Change is a 1992 drama television film directed by Andy Tennant....  more
  • 17
    10
    13

    Hard Promises

    Sissy Spacek, Mare Winningham

    Released1991

    Directed byMartin Davidson

    Hard Promises is a 1992 romantic comedy film directed by Martin Davidson....  more
  • 18
    8
    10

    The Rat Pack

    Don Cheadle, Ray Liotta

    Released1998

    Directed byRob Cohen

    The Rat Pack is a 1998 HBO TV movie about the Rat Pack. The movie stars Ray Liotta as Frank Sinatra, Joe Mantegna as Dean Martin, Don Cheadle as Sammy Davis, Jr., and Angus Macfadyen as Peter...  more
  • 19
    8
    10

    Thief

    Willie Nelson, James Caan

    Released1981

    Directed byMichael Mann

    This film is a 1981 neo-noir film written and directed by Michael Mann and based on the 1975 novel by "Frank Hohimer". The film stars James Caan as the titular thief and Tuesday Weld as his...  more
  • 20
    6
    10

    Mulholland Falls

    Jennifer Connelly, Nick Nolte

    Released1996

    Directed byLee Tamahori

    Mulholland Falls is a 1996 American neo-noir thriller film directed by Lee Tamahori and written by Pete Dexter. It stars Nick Nolte, Jennifer Connelly, Chazz Palminteri, Michael Madsen, Chris Penn,...  more
  • 21
    5
    10

    Amazing Grace and Chuck

    Jamie Lee Curtis, Gregory Peck

    Released1987

    Directed byMike Newell

    Amazing Grace and Chuck is a 1987 film starring Gregory Peck, Jamie Lee Curtis and William Petersen. The film was directed by Mike Newell. It was released on VHS in the UK as Silent Voice....  more
  • 22
    4
    8

    Passed Away

    Tim Curry, Bob Hoskins

    Released1992

    Directed byCharlie Peters

    Passed Away is an American ensemble comedy film from 1992....  more
  • 23
    4
    8

    Wrigley Field: Beyond the Ivy

    William Petersen

    Released2001

  • 24
    6
    12

    Seeking a Friend for the End of the World

    Keira Knightley, Steve Carell

    Released2012

    Directed byLorene Scafaria

    Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is a 2012 comedy-drama film written and directed by Lorene Scafaria, in her directorial debut. The film stars Steve Carell and Keira Knightley. The title and...  more

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  • 25
    4
    15

    Detachment

    Christina Hendricks, Lucy Liu

    Released2011

    Directed byTony Kaye

    Detachment is a 2011 American drama film about the high school education system directed by Tony Kaye, starring Adrien Brody with an ensemble supporting cast....  more