Sunday, April 11, 2010


I am a huge fan of movies - obviously. Movies are the reason I fell in love with this profession in the first place. The way movies effected my life and created memories that will last a lifetime. For almost every time in my life - I can associate a movie with it that will bring back thousands of memories - good and bad. I see movies every chance I get - however - with the schedule I keep, and the cost of movies - I find it harder and harder to make it to the theater as often as I would like - and have found myself instead turning on the good old TV on my short breaks - and I have discovered something....

I feel that in the past 5-6 years - there has been a huge change in the quality of the shows on TV - so much so that I would argue there are now shows on TV that I feel are on par with any film you might see in the theater - some even better. Could this be the new coveted "job" for Actors? Directors? 

In the past - I would have said no. I would have argued that if you wanted a really great character driven role - you would need to go for films - but I don't think this is true anymore. I'm not just talking HBO/STARZ/SHOWTIME either - while these channels have some of the greatest shows I've seen - I've noticed even prime time channels have some really compelling shows out right now - shows that any actor would be proud to be a part of and sink their teeth into these roles. While there are many - I will list a few examples of shows that have really blown me away - acting wise - as well as production...

Breaking Bad (AMC): I was recently turned onto this show - and I'm hooked! The acting - the writing - the overall feel and look - I would put this up against a lot of films and argue this is just as good - if not better than some.


Saving Grace (TNT): This is some of the best acting I've seen - and one of my favorite Holly Hunter performances. I love any role that allows a woman to be powerful and in charge - where you root for her and she is strong.

Dexter (Showtime): I can't say enough about this show. It's brilliant and compelling - edge of your seat - greatness. And you never know what's going to happen. I would say this is far better than some of the movies I've seen lately (Clash of the Titans...ahem)

Damages (FX): First - Martin Short and Lily Tomlin are excellent in these serious roles. I mean excellent. And Second - Glenn Close... enough said.

I could go on - but really my whole point in writing this is - I no longer believe that TV is limited to sitcoms and reality shows and crappy one hour dramas. I used to always say that as an actor - being on TV would be scary because you could get type cast as one certain character and then what? But I don't think that is true anymore. I think that TV is just as much a launching pad for any serious acting career as a film would/could be. It makes me excited as an actor for all the new opportunities available for such excellent roles. 


  1. I could not agree more - and every single show you mentioned above - and many more - like Six Feet Under - Sopranos - The Wire.... incredible shows/stories - stunning performances - bring me to my thought that the landscape is absolutely changing/has changed. The line/taboo about TV and movies - not so much at all anymore. I think it started with the HBO campaign - it's not TV... it's HBO - blew the doors off the taboo of TV being inferior. From that point on - TV has gotten so meaty with quality on many occasions - what's on TV is blowing away whats on the big screen - if only the internet would do the same - all will be grand.

  2. I would have to agree, it seems that there is a lot more "heavy" stuff on TV than ever before. Themes are heavier, therefore the characters are deeper and more intense. These parts seem to have more credence than most characters of the past.

    That being said, do you think that actors can become as big a "hit" on television as in the movies? For comparison, Leonardo Decaprio....Titanic made him an overnight sensation. Do you think TV can do the same, though on a slightly longer term?

  3. I think so Steve - to a degree - George Cloney with ER comes to mind and Farrah Fawcett - I think moreso what is intriguing is that with todays TV - the jump from film to TV and back is not a career death ride - I think its because TV used to have a stigma that "real" actor were on the screen - and today - with todays writers and directors - the stories on TV are demanding top notch acting - and actors see the challenge of all the roles on TV - one thing I see a lot is actors waiting to challenge themselves - TV used not offer that - now i think it does. From Jeremt Renner to having his show to the the Hurt Locker - Holly Hunter Harvy Kietel Glen Close and on and on. In fact I am seeing certain actors that are on par with the heavy weights in movies - staying with TV - Michael who plays Dexter went from Six Feet Under to Dexter - possibly one of the greatest acting jobs from an actor I've seen in years - to go from one iconic role in Six Feet - to playing Dexter - and doing it without any disbelief - blew me away. My thinking is such - TV has grown up - it's got weight - and now actors who love to act - don't have to sit around and wait on good roles once a year in a movie role ;-)

  4. I think your last couple sentences really summarizes it well. TV has grown up with challenging characters that the best actors want to play.