Just because an actor or actress makes a huge splash in the television world, doesn’t mean that they are going to be able to duplicate the same level of success on the big screen. Many have tried, most have a failed, and a few have managed to leave lasting legacies in both genres of entertainment.
With that being said, let’s take a look at 8 actors who experienced wild success in television, but who flopped out when it came to movies: some more so than others.
1. David Caruso
I only say that Caruso had success on television because CSI: Miami was a popular, long running show. Realistically, his castmates and the popularity of police procedural dramas are why it lasted so long, not because of Caruso. He is left looking like the butt end of a joke, and with good reason. Caruso tried to make it in movies, but you wouldn’t have heard of any of the titles he took part in. Big thumbs down, with good reason.
2. Matthew Perry
We all remember Perry from his nearly decade long stint as Chandler on the wildly popular 90s sitcom, Friends. Arguably one of the most popular shows of all time, Perry attempted to make a name for himself on the big screen, and had some success with The Whole Nine Yards. Many people attribute that movie’s success to his co-star, Bruce Willis. Perry is a great actor, he just ins’t meant for movie stardom.
3. Courteney Cox
Another member from the cast of Friends, Cox jumped right into the movie scene. She had relative success in the cult movie series, Scream, and with Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. These supporting roles didn’t earn her any massive acclaim. She has had a couple more TV series gigs, but nothing compared to the fame that she earned on Friends.
4. Michael C. Hall
After playing everyone’s favorite serial killer on Dexter, and a conflicted undertaker on Six Feet Under, it is surprising that he hasn’t become more of a major motion picture star. He is one of the more versatile actors around, having also worked on live stage in a few productions, and doing voice work for the cartoon Star vs. the Forces of Evil. We don’t know when or if Hall will get the film career he deserves.
If you were born in the 80s, the next four actors were on your television screen as you grew up.
5. Timothy Olyphant
Not that Olyphant hasn’t had his share of movie credits, he has, and he plays his roles well. It just seems that he is typecast and doesn’t get a real opportunity to stretch his artistic wings. He often plays charismatic villains, remember him in Hitman or The Girl Next Door? After what he showed us on Justified and Deadwood, he deserves better than what Hollywood has given him.
6. Melissa Joan Hart
Our favorite teenage witch, Hart rose to afternoon TV fame for her roles in Clarissa Explains It All and Sabrina the Teenage Witch. Her first attempt at making a Hollywood movie, the 1999 teen rom-com Drive Me Crazy flopped hard, forcing Hart to head back for three more years of Sabrina. Nothing she has done in several years has gained any acclaimed attention.
7. Ben McKenzie
This guy has made a name for himself with some extremely popular television hits. McKenzie starred in The O.C., Southland, and more recently Gotham. He actually garnered some critical acclaim for his role in the 2005 indie movie, Junebug. Since then, nothing he has done has been for the big screen.
8. Jensen Ackles
Ackles has made it work no matter what shows he has been on. He has starred in some of the biggest shows of the day, in a wide variety of genres. He has appeared on Days of Our Lives, Dark Angel, Dawson’s Creek, Smallville, and for the last 13 years, he has played Dean Winchester in Supernatural. He once scored the lead in the 3D version of My Bloody Valentine, but honestly with a title like that, you know how well the movie did.
What do you think of our list? Let us know in the comments, and share with your friends.