10 Movie Stars Who Gave Their Best Ever Performance On TV

Kate Winslet gave a career-best performance in Mare of Easttown.

Mare of Easttown Kate Winslet
HBO

Once upon a time, if a movie star decided to appear on a TV show, it was a sign their career was on the skids.

But with "prestige TV" becoming ever-more lucrative and respected over the last 20 years, it's now the biggest game in Hollywood, with even Oscar-winning industry veterans turning their talents to the small screen.

The larger canvas of a TV series can be a liberating tool for creators and actors alike to dig deep into their stories and characters, and occasionally it has even allowed beloved actors to turn in the very strongest work of their entire careers.

These 10 actors, all card-carrying Movie Stars in their own rights, were well-known performers long before they appeared on these TV shows, but these performance represent the peak of their life's work to date.

From the most phenomenally successful comedy movie star of the '90s to darling starlets, Oscar mainstays, and everything in-between, these actors benefited enormously from taking their talents to the world of TV where they found a part perfectly suited to their skills.

With more quality TV than ever being produced right now, the future is sure to see A-listers increasingly dabbling in the more expansive medium of long-form television...

10. Jim Carrey - Kidding

Mare of Easttown Kate Winslet
Showtime

Though Jim Carrey is best known for his broad, multiplex-filling studio comedy movies, he's also received plaudits for his more dramatic work, particularly his exceptional performances in the likes of The Truman Show, Man on the Moon, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and I Love You Phillip Morris.

But Carrey's best performance is the one that far too many have slept on - his turn as troubled children's TV presenter Jeff Pickles in Showtime's dark dramedy series Kidding.

It's a part which harnesses both the energetic pep of Carrey's comedy roles and the more considered melancholy of his dramatic parts, as both a Mr. Rogers-esque icon of family TV and a man crippled by grief following the death of his young son.

Carrey is mesmerising in a way like never before - having been away from the mainstream stage for quite some time now, he's is exceptional as a man trying to make sense of inestimable tragedy in middle-age.

It is a role that absolutely came to Carrey at the perfect time in his life and career.

Sadly Kidding was cancelled following the airing of its second season last year, but it nevertheless gave Carrey his richest character to date, and he more than rose to the occasion with a jaw-droppingly full-bodied performance.

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Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.