Hollywood developing movies based on successful television shows is a trend that dates back decades. With shows like HBO’s Deadwood about to go into production and Downton Abbey already in production on their own films, there’s no reason to believe these leaps from the small screen to big are doomed to become a passing fad.
As you can imagine the list of movies based on TV shows grows with each passing year. There are comprehensive lists scattered around the Internet, such as this one at Wikipedia, that explore these films.
To our knowledge there isn’t a single list that instead focuses on movie posters from movies based on TV series. That’s a mouthful; so to fill this gap we made our own list based entirely on vintage original movie posters that we currently have in stock at FFF Movie Posters.
Every movie poster pictured below is an actual picture of an authentic movie poster we currently have for sale.
This list, broken into several posts alphabetically due to size, is both a testament to the number of films Hollywood has produced based on TV shows as well as our expansive inventory of original movie posters. Because it’s based on our poster inventory there are some gaps with newer films, such as Charlie’s Angels, The Last Airbender and The A-Team.
In instances where we have more than one of the pictured poster below in stock, we chose and linked to the one in the best collectible condition.
To own the best one, or others that we literally have only one and may never get another, you must act fast. As time goes on and old vintage posters aren’t properly preserved, the remaining numbers will dwindle and increase in value.
The original Addams Family television series with its now iconic theme song ran from 1964 to 1966 on ABC. The film version was released in 1991 and starred Anjelica Huston, Raul Julia, Christopher Lloyd, Dan Hedaya, Christina Ricci, Jimmy Workman, Judith Malina, and Elizabeth Wilson. Our poster example is a Lurch-focused advance one-sheet.
These Avengers saved the world with style on the big screen long before Nick Fury introduced himself to Tony Stark in the Iron Man post-credits scene. The original ITV series ran from 1961 to 1969, with the big screen version starring Sean Connery, Ralph Fiennes and Uma Thurman coming in 1998. Thurman and Fiennes are front-and-center on the striking poster art while Connery’s presence looms overhead.
Adam West and Burt Ward were the original Batman and Robin on either screen. The 1966 Batman movie came out the same year the TV show premiered on ABC. Batman continues to live on in many mediums. This rare 1966 one-sheet features artwork as goody and silly as the show was.
We cheated a little on this one. Battlestar Galactica was originally conceived as an expensive TV series in response to the surprise success of Star Wars. By its release, Universal Pictures turned the very expensive pilot into a movie. What’s great about the poster art is Universal boasting their bloated budget for everyone to see and marvel at.
In 1993, MTV debuted Beavis & Butthead and before long the delinquent duo dominated the airwaves. By 1996, Beavis & Butthead had their own culturally insensitive movie, but by then their popularity was peaking and a slow ratings descent would follow. Beavis & Butthead creator Mike Judge would use the series’ fame to develop and release cubicle cult classic Office Space in 1999.
The poor become rich and relocated to Beverly Hills in this big screen adaptation of the comedy series that aired from 1962 to 1971. Dabney Coleman, Lea Thompson, Cloris Leachman, Lily Tomlin, Rob Schneider and Jim Varney headlined the cast. It earned over $70 million at the global box office but failed to spawn a sequel.
Bewitched made twinkling your nose all the rage when it premiered on ABC back in 1964. Colombia Pictures tried to recapture the show’s magic with a big screen version starring Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell in 2005. Over $131 million in global box office earnings couldn’t lift Bewitched high enough for a sequel.
It’s hard to find a more famous television family than The Brady Bunch. While reruns still air today, the 1995 theatrical attempt with a different cast to capitalize on the show’s evergreen popularity failed to speak to a new generation. Paramount has not attempted to produce another Brady Bunch film since.
Any child of the 1980s cannot forget The Care Bears craze. The original 1985 movie was designed to both capitalize on the toy line and TV show’s popularity, while also introducing all new characters — in this case The Care Bears Cousins — to sell as toys. The film and its Disney-esque poster art was successful enough to produce two sequels, though dramatically diminishing returns with each pushed The Care Bears into the closet.
Dr. Seuss stories are brought back in new mediums even to this day. One of the earlier more risky adaptation’s was 2003’s live-action The Cat in the Hat starring Mike Myers as the titular feline. It barely made back the over $100 million budget not including marketing. The advance poster above offers a tease of the cat to come.
Tim Burton’s 2012 Dark Shadows starring Johnny Depp stumbled out the gate in the U.S. but earned nearly $250 million worldwide. The poster art evokes a modern familial interpretation of the original TV series that ran from 1966 to 1971 on ABC. It also features two distinct tag-lines that are a play on words: “strange is relative” and “every family has its demons.”
Joe Friday and Pep Streebek were introduced to a new generation in 1987. Dan Aykroyd and Tom Hanks stepped into the iconic roles of Friday and Streebek, respectively, with Harry Morgan providing a connection to the original TV show by reprising the role of Bill Gannon. The infamous Dragnet police badge artwork and famous quote “just the facts” carries forward from the TV show to the movie poster.
Continue to Part 2: E through L
Part 3: M through Z