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Best transition from comedic to serious/dramatic actor.

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View Poll Results: Best transition from comedic to serious/dramatic actor.
Adam Sandler
1
0.74%
Jamie Foxx
3
2.21%
Bill Murray
32
23.53%
Jim Carrey
9
6.62%
Tom Hanks
74
54.41%
Robin Williams
16
11.76%
Other (specify below)
1
0.74%
Voters: 136. You may not vote on this poll

Best transition from comedic to serious/dramatic actor.

Old 05-09-05, 03:33 PM
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Best transition from comedic to serious/dramatic actor.

Posted this elsewhere, wanted to see your opinions here.

I thought of this poll just having watched Jim Carrey in The Majestic. Horrible contrived piece of schmaltz IMO. But his performance in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind was award worthy. Who has most successfully/effectively made the transition to serious or dramatic acting roles having originally come from a standup/comedic/improv background? I believe Tom wasn't a standup comic to begin with but in his early career he was to me a comedic/feel good actor. Starting with his tv series Bosom Buddies some of his early hits (Big, Bachelor Party, Splash). Only four or five of his first 18 movies were not comedic in one way. He did crash and burn early on (Bonfire of the Vanities) but it wasn't until Philadelphia I believe that he made people sit up and take notice of him in a different light.

I think Robin Williams edges out Tom Hanks, just in the way he can creep me out in roles (One Hour Photo, Insomina) that make me forget he was an original funny man to begin with.

Thoughts?
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Old 05-09-05, 03:46 PM
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His performance in Grand Canyon led me to believe Steve Martin should top the list, but since then things haven't panned out that way.
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Old 05-09-05, 04:19 PM
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of the choices offered, I had to vote for Bill Murray.
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Old 05-09-05, 04:22 PM
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Bill Murray
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Old 05-09-05, 04:44 PM
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Holy shit, I'm the first to vote for Hanks??? I'd put Robin Williams a close second, but sometimes, his expressions betray a little too much innate goofiness...
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Old 05-09-05, 05:22 PM
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1. Bill Murray
2. Robin Williams
3. Tom Hanks
4. Jamie Foxx
5. Adam Sandler
6. Jim Carrey
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Old 05-09-05, 05:27 PM
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And my prediction for someone making that list in the next few years?

Will Farrell.
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Old 05-09-05, 05:37 PM
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Wow, i'm surprised Bill Murray is winning. I voted for Hanks, and i think he wins by a mile.
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Old 05-09-05, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by fumanstan
Wow, i'm surprised Bill Murray is winning. I voted for Hanks, and i think he wins by a mile.
Same here. I voted for Tom Hanks.
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Old 05-09-05, 05:45 PM
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Definately Hanks.
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Old 05-09-05, 05:47 PM
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Bill Murray gets my vote.
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Old 05-09-05, 05:53 PM
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Until Murray gets a new serious guy role, I'll go with Hanks. I know many accuse Hanks of playing the same character over and over. I disagree. Bill Murray is basically Bill Murray in every movie. Serious Bill or Funny Bill, its still Bill. He's such a talent that it works, but I wouldnt consider him anywhere near the level of Hanks.
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Old 05-09-05, 11:55 PM
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1. Tom Hanks
2. Bill Murray
3. Jim Carrey
4. Jamie Foxx
5. Adam Sandler
6. I couldn't vote Robin Williams dog catcher
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Old 05-10-05, 12:51 AM
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Went with Bill Murray. I'd probably put Williams second, followed by Carrey, Foxx, Hanks, and Sandler.
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Old 05-10-05, 12:55 AM
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Although I wouldn't put him anywhere near the top of this list, people never seem to remember that Bruce Willis began as a comedian.
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Old 05-10-05, 09:45 AM
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I think Jack Lemmon should have been on the list.

He started early in his career on comedy but then took up some very serious roles such as Days of Wine and Roses and Missing.
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Old 05-10-05, 10:49 AM
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I voted other for Bruce Willis.
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Old 05-10-05, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Hannibal
I think Robin Williams edges out Tom Hanks, just in the way he can creep me out in roles (One Hour Photo, Insomina) that make me forget he was an original funny man to begin with.
Most of Robin Williams recent comedy roles make me forget he was funny to begin with.
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Old 05-10-05, 03:33 PM
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Kevin Spacey started as an amateur stand-up comic, but I guess he doesn't count because he was not well-known.
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Old 12-05-08, 08:32 AM
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How about best transition from serious to comedic: John C. Reilly
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Old 12-05-08, 08:55 AM
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Mary Lynn Rajskub gets my vote.
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Old 12-05-08, 09:10 AM
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Probably not the greatest actor of his generation, but come on--no love for Eric Bana?

From stand-up and character work, to Chopper, to Black Hawk Down, etc. I think he's come a pretty long way.
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Old 12-05-08, 09:11 AM
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Robin Williams, simply because his comedy was very over the top, and it is amazing that he was able to do something dramatic. The guy always played crazy characters like Mork from Ork, and then to play a serious professor in Dead Poets Society or Good Will Hunting, and be able to pull it off, shows how talented he is.
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Old 12-05-08, 09:59 AM
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There seems to be two answers to this question. Like the thread title says, who made the 'best' transition. There's only one clear answer to that question, Tom Hanks. Going from Bosom Buddies, Splash, Dragnet, Turner & Hooch to multiple Oscar winner/nominee is clearly head and shoulder's above the rest. It's hard to argue otherwise.

On the flip side of the coin, you can look at the question as who made the most surprising turn as an actor from comedy to drama. Jim Carey was phenomenal in both the Truman Show and Eternal Sunshine but has kinda stalled in the drama arena. Murray's deadpan humor made for an easy transition to drama. Sandler? Seriously? I can't stand his comedies and couldn't even name a drama he's in. Jamie Foxx seems to be hit or miss. He needs more roles under his belt.

I'd have to go with Robin Williams. He has roles on opposite ends of the spectrum while everyone kinda sticks to the middle. Mork from Ork playing a serial killer? Who would have ever saw that coming? Not to mention he gave an Oscar caliber performance in Dead Poet's Society. It's clear to me that his win for Good Will Hunting was a "sorry for last time, this one's really for DPS."

Last edited by Michael Corvin; 12-05-08 at 10:02 AM.
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Old 12-05-08, 10:04 AM
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Takeshi Kitano gets my vote.
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