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  • Doctor Who had two films starring Peter Cushing as 'Dr. Who' which took place outside the series' continuity. "The Five Doctors", a 90-minute special to celebrate the 20th anniversary, was basically a Movie. A canon film was the 1996 Paul McGann TV movie, which was an attempt to get the show back on track after its original 1989 cancelling. The 50th anniversary special was billed as a movie, and showed in theaters along with the global simulcast.
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  • The X-Files used its first movie The X-Files: Fight the Future to further its storyline, although it mostly used the medium to reveal important secrets of the Government Conspiracy. By contrast, The X-Files: I Want to Believe has nothing to do with the Myth Arc, so it's more of a Non-Serial Movie.
  • Firefly spawned a theatrical film, Serenity, which tied up most (but not all) of the dangling threads from the short-lived series. Universally known to fandom as the Big Damn Movie. Fan Fiction even uses this to help identify the time frame: Post Show Pre BDM, Post BDM, No BDM. There are some that are Post BDM + AU.
  • Blue Mountain State ended after 3 seasons. While the final episode did finish its story, fans wanted there to be at least one more season (students normally spend 4-6 years in an American college and since each season represented a school year, fans wanted to see Alex Moran's senior year) to the point where they signed a petition and the creators launched a Kickstarter. The result was Blue Mountain State: The Rise of Thadland, released on February 2, 2016.
  • The 1970s Speculative Fiction series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century found its pilot released to theatres rather than broadcast.
    • This was also the case for the original Battlestar Galactica, at least in Canada and Europe.
      • ...and In America! Where it appeared in some theaters ... in Sensurround!
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000 's movie was actually shorter than any episode of the TV series - having apparently had a few of the 'host segments' cut right out just prior to release - and featured slightly dumbed-down riffing (i.e. fewer obscure references, more crude language) as well as an actually tolerable movie (This Island Earth, considered by many to be a sci-fi classic) due to Executive Meddling. This is not to say the movie isn't still pretty funny.
    • This Island Earth was itself edited down significantly for use in the MST3K movie which- even including the new footage- still ran almost 15 minutes shorter than the original film.
  • Star Trek and Star Trek: The Next Generation have had 10 films between them — six of the former and four of the latter. In a more conventional way of speaking, however, the first one (Star Trek: The Motion Picture) was the The Movie for TOS and the seventh and first unnumbered one (Star Trek: Generations) for TNG—the sequels to them essentially icing on the The Movie cake, allowing their respective shows to basically continue well past their final TV episodes and to engage in the Grand Finales they didn't have during their original run. Then again, if you have not heard about the "even-odd rule"... basically, there is a strange pattern in which the even-numbered films are (in general) better than the odd-numbered films. The result is that the second TOS film, The Wrath of Khan, is usually considered their best, and the second TNG film (movie #8), First Contact, is also considered the quintessential TNG film, distilling all that was best in their respective series. Still, their first movie outings still had that "The Movie" effect, where everything was a shiny new movie set focusing more on "wow, we're actually in a theatrical film now". Of course, of the four TNG films - movies #7 through #10 - #7 and #9 fell victim to the odd-numbered rule (though #9 is more like a pleasant stand-alone, the cast officially thinks it's boring), and #10 (Nemesis) officially broke the "even numbered Trek films are great" rule (the cast openly stated that "it sucked"), First Contact was the only TNG film universally accepted as a great entry.
    • Reviews for The Motion(less) Picture were better than one might expect based on how commonly it's panned today (Ebert gave it 3/4 stars, and it's got a 45% on Rotten Tomatoes, which is ... well ... rotten by the stated standards, but significantly higher than a lot of arguably better movies). While it didn't meet its over-optimistic revenue expectations, it did at least make back its budget 2-3 times over, which was good enough for Paramount to green-light a (lower-budget) sequel after booting Roddenberry, who was perceived to be much of what went wrong with the first one.
  • The '60s' Batman series had a theatrical film (Batman: The Movie) between the first and second seasons, featuring The Joker, The Penguin, The Riddler, and Catwoman as a Legion of Doom.
    • Also - according to Adam West, the series' three-part arcs were meant to be edited together into telefilms for overseas distribution (as with several contemporary shows like The Man from U.N.C.L.E.. It's unknown if any of these plans actually went ahead, though.
  • McHale's Navy spawned two movies during its run as a TV series in the early 1960s; then The Film of the Series in 1997 attempted to tell an "after-the-series" story mainly by ignoring the show's World War II roots and throwing in a Cold War Retcon.
  • The Naked Gun series of films continue the adventures of the short-lived series Police Squad!. The combined running-length of the three films is 253 minutes, over an hour and a half more screen-time than the six-episode series which you've probably never seen or heard of.
  • Gilligan's Island had three Made For TV Movies, in addition to its two Animated Adaptations.
    • Rescue From Gilligan's Island had the cast finally escape the island, struggle to reintegrate into normal life, and finally become shipwrecked on the island once again during a reunion cruise.
    • The Castaways on Gilligan's Island saw them escape yet again, but return to open a holiday resort. This was intended to be the pilot for a Spin-Off that never eventuated.
    • The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan's Island saw, you guessed it, The Harlem Globetrotters crash landing on the island before helping to thwart the schemes of a Mad Scientist who wants the island for its rich energy supply. The issue is, naturally, settled in a basketball match between The Globetrotters and the Mad Scientist's robotic team.
  • Noah's Arc: Jumping the Broom, the movie about Wade and Noah's wedding (and the craziness that precedes it).
  • After already being a spinoff of the original Stargate movie, once Stargate SG-1 was canceled, the major plot of the ninth and tenth seasons was brought to a climax in the movie Stargate: The Ark of Truth. This was then followed by a sequel called Stargate Continuum. Further movies were apparently planned, including another SG-1 movie, an SGA movie, and an SGU movie, but these have since devolved into Development Hell if not cancelled altogether.
    • The unusual thing about Stargate fandom is that the film referred to as "The Movie" is actually not The Movie in the sense of this trope; it was the first film that everything else is based off of (essentially the opposite of The Movie). The reason for this is simply that it's the only part of the entire franchise that doesn't have a subtitle, so there's pretty much nothing else to call it. And then it gets even more complicated because the cast and creators of the film don't consider the series canon, and have frequently remarked on their desire to complete the film series as they intended and ignoring the spinoff entirely, while the series in turn diverges from the movie in a number of areas as well.
      • So while other shows might have The Series followed by the Big Damn Movie, Stargate has The Movie followed by the Big Damn Series. (This is considering that in the first movie they only saved one planet, whereas afterwards they go on to save multiple galaxies several times over and uncover the Secrets of the Universe).
  • Numerous Brit Coms of the 1970s had movie spinoffs, featuring the original cast and (usually) writers, but filmed on different sets and locations. These films typically featured the cast going on a bus trip, or a cheap foreign holiday, and generally had poor reviews. Examples include:
  • Thunderbirds: The series was followed by two theatrical movies, which were unexpected box-office flops (in fact, the second film was greenlighted despite the first one being a flop as they thought it was a fluke!).
  • In one of the largest dichotomies in this trope, the otherwise-cheery and humorous Sesame Street had Follow That Bird, a full-length Tear Jerker of a film that delves into much darker territory of family, loss, and self-identity than anything that ever showed up in the normal show. This was followed over a decade later by Elmo in Grouchland.
  • Some '80s US sitcoms had made for TV extensions:
    • Family Ties Vacation sends the cast to Merrie Olde England after Alex wins a summer scholarship to Oxford.
    • The Facts of Life had more than one of these: The Facts of Life Goes to Paris sends Mrs. Garrett and the girls to France, while The Facts of Life Down Under sends them to Australia. There was also a reunion movie about a decade after the show ended.
  • Moving into the '90s, Sabrina the Teenage Witch had two during the run of the live-action show: Sabrina Goes To Rome and Sabrina Down Under. Unlike most movies of this ilk, the majority of the regular cast weren't involved (in both cases only Sabrina and Salem got to make the trip).
  • Blossom also had Blossom In Paris (subsequently shown in syndication in four parts).
  • Several movie-length Reunion Shows:
    • Leave It to Beaver had a reunion movie (Still the Beaver) which led to a new series (titled, creatively enough, The New Leave It To Beaver) in the '80s. It also had a very forgettable theatrical version, with a whole new cast and set in more modern times, in 1997.
    • The Brady Bunch had two reunion movies The Brady Girls Get Married, A Very Brady Christmas. Each of these spawned a short-lived series (The Brady Brides, The Bradys).
    • The Andy Griffith Show (Return to Mayberry)
    • Eight is Enough: A Family Reunion
    • I Dream of Jeannie: 15 Years Later
      • Also, I Still Dream of Jeannie
    • The Love Boat: A Valentine Voyage
    • Back to the Streets of San Francisco
    • Several Rockford Files movies in the '90s.
    • The Growing Pains Movie and Growing Pains: Return Of The Seavers.
    • Bring Me the Head of Dobie Gillis for The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis.
  • The Ultra Series has done a fair number in its later years.
    • In 1990, Ultra Q got one (some twenty-four years late!) called Ultra Q The Movie: Legend of the Stars, featuring an alien named Wadatsujin and her kaiju Nagira.
    • Ultraman Tiga: The Final Odyssey was released in 2000 (three years after the series ended), but wrapped up some of the remaining plot points in the series (such as Daigo and Rena finally getting engaged) and featured cameos from the cast of Sequel Series Ultraman Dyna to bridge the gap between series. It also revealed a fair bit about Ultraman Tiga's past and that of the prehistoric civilization he defended.
    • Ultraman Cosmos had an entire trilogy. It's first movie served as a prequel to the series and a Milestone Celebration for the franchise's 35th anniversary. The next two movies took place after the events of the show and featured a new hero called Ultraman Justice.
    • Ultraman Mebius And The Ultra Brothers continued the Ultraman Mebius theme of "commemorating 40 years of Ultraman", as Mebius meets the first four Ultramen (the original, Seven, Jack, and Ace), battles a gang of aliens pulled from the early shows, and learns about what it means to be an Ultraman.
    • 2010s Ultramen (Ultraman Ginga, Ultraman X, Ultraman Orb, and Ultraman Geed) would always have a movie after the series concludes.
  • Power Rangers got two movies during the height of their popularity. The first is a non-canon film based on Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: The Movie. It introduced early the ninja powers they would be using for Season 3 (which later formed their own story arc on how they got those powers). The second was used to introduce the Power Rangers Turbo series. This one was part of the TV show's continuity.
  • On the Japanese end of things, every year (since the early 2000s) there's a Super Sentai/Kamen Rider double-feature (aka Super Hero Time: The Movie (insert year here)), with the Sentai movie getting about half the screen time the Rider movies get. (In contrast to America, where toku shows can be divided into the categories of "Power Rangers" and "everyone else", Kamen Rider is much bigger than Super Sentai in Japan.)
    • Super Sentai also has a team-up with the current team and its predecessor every January. Kamen Rider is getting in on the action with that lately every December. And now, Rider/Sentai teamups (Super Hero Taisen series) are also going to be an every year thing. So by now, you've got a Super Hero Time double-feature, a Sentai 'versus' movie, a Kamen Rider 'Movie Wars' movie, and a Super Hero Taisen movie every year. Also, if a series is popular enough, it'll get a movie or two after its run finishes, though usually DVD only. Japan really loves its Toku.
  • Lizzie McGuire and its Spiritual Successor Hannah Montana both have one.
  • Columbo started as an NBC made-for-TV-movie, then spawned a TV series, then spawned even more TV Movies!
  • Sex and the City took 4 years to get the movie out. Originally planned for the year after, but Kim Cattrall wanted more money for the work. (and who can blame her?) So it dragged on for a while until Kim got a deal.
  • British political satire The Thick of It spawned In the Loop, in which the action transferred to the US and most of the actors played different characters.
  • The new Battlestar Galactica got two of these in Direct To DVD form: Razor and The Plan. Razor is a Midquel and The Plan is a P.O.V. Sequel. Each focuses on a troubled villainous character, Admiral Helena Cain and Brother John Cavil, respectively.
  • Get Smart had planned to make a full-length movie, which instead became the three-episode story arc "A Man Called Smart". Way after the series ended, there was a bad movie, a made-for-tv movie, and another 2008 movie.
  • The Gong Show Movie.
  • The League of Gentlemen's Apocalypse, in which all the characters became Refugees From TV Land, and enacted a terrible revenge on the writer-performers.
  • Monty Python refilmed a bunch of their TV sketches and released it in 1972 as And Now For Something Completely Different. It became must-see viewing on the midnight movie circuit.
  • Our Miss Brooks had a theatrical movie at the end of its run. Miss Brooks finally marries Love Interest Mr. Boynton. She also spends much of her time tutoring a Lonely Rich Kid
  • Studio 3's Bitcom segment of shorts became popular enough to get its own 40-minute Spin-Off special, Bitcom And The Oblivion Ray.
  • Thomas the Tank Engine, The Railway Series and Shining Time Station had Thomas and the Magic Railroad, and here's a brief summary. Sir Topham Hat has vacation and leaving Mr. Conductor in charge. They have to find a lost engine named Lady while this is going on.
  • Barney & Friends had Barney's Great Adventure, a movie where Barney and the kids have to chase after a rainbow-striped egg which contains a creature that can make people's dreams appear before them.
  • There was going to be a Teletubbies movie, but there was a dispute between the American distributor of the Teletubbies and the original creator of the Teletubbies, Anne Wood. This resulted in the Oogieloves.
  • Little House on the Prairie had quite a few TV-movies after the series' run which gave the show closure, the most notable movie being when the town of Walnut Grove is destroyed.
  • A theatrical version of Dragnet was released in 1954. It's slightly Darker and Edgier than the series tended to be, with a bit of a downer ending involving a Pyrrhic Victory. It was notable in being the first movie based on a TV show.
  • The Peter Gunn movie Gunn (1967) had Craig Stevens once again as the title character.
  • Tracker had a movie of sorts that was really a couple of episodes edited together and released as Alien Tracker. The poor quality and fan refusal to buy it is probably what made Lion's Gate think DVDs wouldn't sell, and no season set was ever released.
  • Wayne's World, Coneheads and The Blues Brothers are all The Movies of recurring skits from Saturday Night Live.
  • Similarly, Kevin & Perry Go Large, based on the characters from Harry Enfield and Chums.
  • The Muppet Movie and its seven theatrical follow-ups, as well as two TV flicks and a direct-to-video movie.
  • Blackadder Back & Forth, which had an extremely limited theatrical release; it was commissioned for the Millennium Dome's Skyscape Cinema, and subsequently went to DVD.
  • Dark Shadows got two: House of Dark Shadows (1970) and Night of Dark Shadows (1971). Tim Burton made another Dark Shadows film in 2012.
  • Veronica Mars got a limited-release movie in 2014 after a successful Kickstarter campaign.
  • Due to the popularity of Flemish series Kabouter Plop created by Studio100, a couple of movies were released in Belgium starting in the mid 2000's.
  • Downton Abbey ended in 2015, but in 2019 got a full-length theatrical film appropriately titled, Downton Abbey.
  • The Army Game: 1958's I Only Arsked!, directed by Montgomery Tully and made by Hammer Films. In it, slapstick ensues when the inept army recruits from Hut 29 are transferred to a post in the Middle East.
  • Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries received a feature film in 2020 titled Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears. In it, Phryne goes on a globetrotting adventure from Palestine to England and back again, dragging a reluctant DI Jack Robinson in her week. Most of the other series regulars have at least a cameo.
  • Psych has had two movies so far, Psych: The Movie in 2017 and Psych 2: Lassie Come Home in 2020.
  • Odd Squad has two: Odd Squad: The Movie in 2016, and the Made-for-TV Movie World Turned Odd in 2018. Odd Squad: The Movie was unique in that it reunited the main cast of Seasons 1 and 2 of the show and also had star power like Jack McBrayer and Hannah Simone, while World Turned Odd was co-creator Tim McKeon's last time-travel-related concept made for the show, since he was banned from making any more time-travel episode suggestions in the writer's room.


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