10 Best TV Shows Based On Movies, According To Ranker

Fans are thrilled for the long-awaited return of Westworld, one of the most exciting shows on television. However, fans of the series might not know that it was first brought to life as the 1973 sci-fi movie of the same name.

Movies have been adapted into television shows for many years with most of these attempts failing and going unnoticed. But Ranker has highlighted some of the most popular shows based on movies, which range from fun cartoon adaptations of beloved classics to series that have built a strong legacy of their own.

10 Back To The Future (1991-1993)

Standing as one of the touchstone time travel movies as well as the kickoff to its own popular trilogy, Back to the Future is an all-time classic. And while it has no threat of being overshadowed by a television adaptation, it appears the cartoon take on the story was a big hit with fans.

The series only lasted two seasons but continued the adventures of Marty McFly and Doc Brown as they traveled through time and got up to all kinds of mischief. Interestingly, the majority of the animated show's episodes were directed by Peyton Reed.

9 Westworld (2016-)

Though there are fans of the cheesy sci-fi original movie starring Yul Brynner as a rogue robot cowboy in a Western theme park, there's no denying that the Westworld series did something more ambitious and interesting with the material.

The series examines the complexities of creating artificial intelligence and forcing it into a subservient role. The show has grown in scope and in its ideas from the thrilling first season and there are many who can't wait to see where it goes next.

8 Aladdin (1994-1995)

Just about all of the Disney animated movies have been spun off into a cartoon series at some point. But it appears as though fans like the television adaptation of Aladdin the best. The show picks up with Aladdin and Jasmine living their happy life and going on adventures along with their friends, including the magical Genie.

Of course, the show is missing the crucial element of Robin Williams's iconic voice performance. But getting to spend more time in this magical and thrilling world with these beloved characters seemed to be enough for many fans.

7 Highlander: The Series (1992-1998)

While Henry Cavill will be taking over the Highlander franchise, the original movie starring Christopher Lambert and Sean Connery has plenty of fans. But there is also a strong following for the lesser-known series based on the movie.

Highlander: The Series found Duncan MacLeod (now played by Adrian Paul) living in modern society and keeping his identity as an ancient immortal secret while also battling other immortals. The fantasy action elements of the show found a niche crowd for six seasons.

6 Star Wars: Clone Wars (2008-2020)

There have been a number of Star Wars series inspired by George Lucas's original movies, including the recent Obi-Wan Kenobi. But many fans point to Clone Wars as their favorite in the television side of the franchise.

The animated series takes place in the same era as the prequel movies and focuses on the war in which the Jedi fought against the droid armies. The show included beloved characters like Yoda and Anakin Skywalker while also introducing the likes of Ahsoka Tano and Cad Bane.

5 Stargate SG-1 (1997-2007)

The sci-fi adventure Stargate starred Kurt Russell and James Spader as members of a team who investigate a strange artifact that serves as an interstellar teleportation device between different worlds.

The movie itself was not overly popular, but it seems that some saw the potential in the premise and turned it into a sci-fi series. Stargate SG-1 follows a secret military team who uses the so-called "stargates" to explore other planets. It made for a fun ride that went on for 10 seasons.

4 The Real Ghostbusters (1986-1991)


Though Ghostbusters is one of the most popular comedy movies of all time and the recent Ghostbusters: Afterlife was well received as a fitting reboot, there is still plenty of love for The Real Ghostbusters.

The animated series featured the four heroes of the movie taking on various paranormal threats. It was an acclaimed series that ran for seven seasons and some fans feel it lives up to the original more than any of the other movies.

3 Beetlejuice (1989-1991)

Tim Burton's Beetlejuice was a wonderful comedy with a slight horror movie vibe and featuring an iconic performance from Michael Keaton in the titular role. He played the ghoulish troublemaker who is hired by a newly deceased couple to get rid of the new residents of their house.

While fans are still waiting for a sequel, the animated series was a big hit even without Keaton's performance. It was a fun and humorous adventure in the afterlife with a hugely entertaining lead character.

2 Buffy The Vampire Slayer (1997-2003)

It is interesting to see a movie that fails then transformed into a much more successful television series. Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a horror-comedy about a high school cheerleader who finds out she is the next in a long line of vampire hunters.

After the movie became a critical and financial disappointment, it was repurposed into a show that toned down the comedy somewhat and put more emphasis on the horror. The result was a beloved cult hit that featured a badass hero taking on all kinds of memorable supernatural threats.

1 M*A*S*H (1972-1983)

Robert Alman's satire M*A*S*H told the story of the staff at a war field hospital during the Korean War. Though it was an acclaimed and Oscar-winning movie, few could have predicted it would make a good sitcom, let alone one of the most acclaimed shows of all time.

The series may have included a laugh track and some wackier characters to appeal to a wider audience, but it was still ground-breaking in how it tackled heavy subject matter. It was a massive hit, famously lasting far longer than the war it was based on.

NEXT: 10 Best New TV Shows Of 2022, According To Ranker

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