In the never-ending search for feature length ideas, one of the big screen's most bountiful wells has undoubtedly been the small screen. And with plenty of memorable films and movie franchises getting their roots from programs that we've enjoyed from the comforts of our own couches and Lovesacs, we thought it was time to take another look at the best films that made the jump from the living room to the cineplex.
Since the number of films with television roots can be overwhelming, we had to set some ground rules. We chose movies that are big screen adaptations of TV series, mini-series, or sketches, along with movies that include the series' principal cast members. We left out films that are fundamentally derived from other sources (so no Superman or Batman: The Movie this time around, as they are best known for their comic book roots), but have included others that are first and foremost remembered as television shows (The Addams Family).
So back away from the warm glow of your television set and prepare to dive into the climate-controlled comforts of your local theater as we countdown the 50 Best Television Adaptations of all time!
Each critic from our discrete list gets one vote, all weighted equally.
Reviews without ratings are not counted toward the results.
Because reviews are continually added, manually and otherwise, we have a cutoff date at which new reviews are not counted. The current cut off date is 6/11/2010.
We use a weighted formula to account for variation in the number of reviews per movie per year. The winners are determined by the rankings, designated as the "adjusted score," after applying said formula:
t + ((r-a) ÷ a) if number of reviews > average number of reviews for corresponding year.
t * (r ÷ a) if number of reviews < average number of reviews for corresponding year
t if number of reviews = average number of reviews for corresponding year
with "r" representing the number of rated reviews, "t" the Tomatometer score, and "a" the average number of reviews per movie for corresponding year