We can’t possibly be more excited about El Camino. For those still not in the know, it’s not one of the made-up gaalis SRK’s Raj gives the local cops on his European vacation in DDLJ. It’s the Breaking Bad spin-off movie, where series creator Vince Gilligan writes and directs the follow-up journey of Aaron Paul’s Jesse Pinkman. While we’ll have to wait for 11th October to know whether the film lives up to the much-loved AMC series, we’ve had some terrific movies which have been born from hit TV shows. Here are 10 of the best.
Sacha Baron Cohen introduced three characters on his Channel 4 TV show Da Ali G Show of which all three got their own movies. But the funniest of the three, certainly not the least offensive, is Borat: Cultural Learnings for Make Benefit of Glorious Nation of Kazhakstan, where the well-intentioned but wildly misogynistic and staunchly anti-semitic TV reporter Borat Sagdiyev visits the USA and poses obnoxious questions to everyone he bumps into.
Mel Brooks’s howlarious take on a secret agent was a very popular TV show in the 1960s where Don Adams played the inept and clumsy but ultimately effective Agent 86, Maxwell Smart. Fresh from his Office popularity, Steve Carrell got into the shoes of Smart with aplomb and created a steamy chemistry with Anne Hathaway in the 2008 film version.
The Gene Roddenberry-created TV series itself has had five reboots and the two famous movie outings happened in 1979 with Robert Wise (Sound of Music) as director and in 2009 with J.J. Abrams (Armageddon) behind the megaphone. And given the success of the 2009 version, there will certainly be many more Star Trek-ing on screens, big and small.
Starsky & Hutch
Way before director Todd Phillips created a splash with The Hangover, he turned the much-loved ABC TV series of the 1970s about the adventures of two California detectives into a laugh riot in 2004. With Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson in the title roles, it was a thoroughly enjoyable buddy cop movie. Snoop Dogg as Huggy Bear stole the show, though.
Very few actually know that the 1987 Brian De Palma masterpiece was actually based on a TV series from the late-1950s-early-1960s. That’s because the film, which won Sean Connery an Oscar for the Best Supporting Actor, was far superior to the original show. Written by David Mamet, the film revolved around Prohibition agent Eliot Ness’s (Kevin Costner) pursuit of mob boss Al Capone (Robert de Niro) in 1930s Chicago.
21 Jump Street
Another cop buddy-hood, this one’s about two young police officers going undercover in college to investigate crimes on the campus. The show was huge in the late 80s and early 90s with Johnny Depp being the breakout star. The film hit the right notes in 2012 with Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum getting into their college shoes to bust a drug ring.
The Addams Family
Cinematographer Barry Sonnenfeld turned director with this 1991 big-screen adaptation of the 1964 TV series about an absolutely eccentric family with all its kooky members. Anjelica Huston was a riot as Morticia Addams, even winning a Golden Globe nomination for her performance. The film’s commercial success earned itself a lousy sequel a couple of years later.
Opinions are divided whether the 2000 film version was as fun and entertaining as the hit TV show (remember Farrah Fawcett as Jill?) of the 1970s but you just couldn’t take your eyes off Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu and Drew Barrymore kicking some serious ass. Bill Murray as Bosley helped.
Perhaps best remembered in Bollywood for being the source material for the Nagarjuna-Manisha Koirala film Criminal which itself is best remembered for the song Tu mile dil khile, this 1993 Harrison Ford film was an adaptation of the 1960s ABC show with the same name about a doctor being wrongfully convicted for the murder of his wife.
Another Brian De Palma film, at least the first M:I movie was. Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt and his missions were actually born many, many years back in 1966 when Bruce Geller created Mission: Impossible the TV series for CBS. In fact, the famous theme music of the film franchise was created for the TV show by Argentine composer Lalo Schifrin.