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Jason Bateman — From Michael Bluth to Marty Byrde, Check Out the Actor’s Most Iconic Roles

Which is your favorite on the list?

Jason Bateman can play comedic roles with the best of the best just as well as he can bring dark drama to the screen in Emmy Award winning series like Ozark — and as the star of some of our favorite movies and TV shows, each new project is a treat. Since his debut in Little House on the Prairie in 1981 to his most recent roles in films like Air (2023), the 55-year-old actor keeps us coming back for more.

Getting his start in a Golden Grahams commercial in the 80s to earning Golden Globes, Emmys and Screen Actors Guild Awards, Jason Bateman has come a long way, acting in some of the most critically acclaimed films and series of the past two decades.

Jason Bateman, 1985
Jason Bateman, 1985Darlene Hammond/Getty Images

Here, take a look at our top ten favorite Jason Bateman movies and TV shows — did yours make the list?

Jason Bateman movies and TV shows, Ranked

10. This Is Where I Leave You (2014)

Four adult siblings reunite when they learn of their father’s death to sit shiva for a week at his request. All at different points of their lives and dealing with individual personal issues, the group comes together under one roof, in the presence of their mother (played by Jane Fonda), and have to face the past, present and future.

Related: If Jane Fonda Could Go Back in Time, She Might Not Have Gotten a Facelift

This film about life, loss and family is both hilarious and heartwarming, and one of Jason Bateman’s most underrated roles.

9. Air (2023)

Based on true events, Air chronicles the revolutionary partnership between Nike and basketball player Michael Jordan, back when Nike wasn’t comparable to other brands. Their union impacted sports history and made the brand what it is today.

Bateman played Rob Strasser, Marketing VP, alongside Matt Damon, Ben Affleck and Viola Davis.

8. Arrested Development (2003 — 2013)

This sitcom has garnered a cult following over the years, making it one of Jason Bateman’s most iconic roles. The story revolves around the eccentric Bluth family, with Jason Bateman starring as Michael Bluth.

When Michael’s father, a successful real estate developer, is arrested, his family must learn to adjust to their new, far less glamorous lives. Michael is perhaps the most level-headed of his family members, and does his best to keep his mother and siblings in check.

The series also starred Portia de Rossi, Will Arnett, Michael Cera, Alia Shawkat, Tony Hale, Jeffrey Tambor, David Cross and Jessica Walter.

7. Zootopia (2016)

Jason Bateman takes on a voice acting role in this 2016 animated film. The story follows an adorable bunny (voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin) who has finally achieved her dream of becoming a rabbit cop in Zootopia.

Struggling at first, she gets the opportunity to prove herself and solve a mysterious case — and who better to help than Nick Wilde, a con-artist fox (voiced by Jason Bateman) who just might be the key to putting the pieces together.

6. Horrible Bosses (2011)

Three men, played by Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis and and Charlie Day, are sick of being at the mercy of their employers. Coming to the conclusion that the only way to rid themselves of their distress is to get rid of their bosses, they hatch a plan to carry out their mission — only to discover that it isn’t as easy as they thought it’d be.

It isn’t long before things start to go south for this trio as they seek to put an end to the torment they face each day at the hands of their horrible bosses.

5. The Outsider (2020) Jason Bateman movies and TV shows

This dark miniseries mixes crime and the supernatural together, with Jason Bateman playing the role of Terry Maitland, a man accused of murdering a young boy. What starts out as a standard investigation turns into something far darker, as forces unknown to man begin to make themselves known.

4. Juno (2007) Jason Bateman movies and TV shows

High schooler Juno learns she is pregnant and decides she will give her baby up for adoption. She meets a young childless couple and they decide to proceed with a closed adoption. As time progresses, Juno learns that she and the future adopted father of her child, played by Jason Bateman, share various common interests.

As the nine months of her pregnancy unfold, Juno’s life becomes more and more complicated, both in terms of her relationship with the baby’s biological father, as well as with its soon-to-be-adopted father.

3. Game Night (2018) Jason Bateman movies and TV shows

Max and Annie (Jason Bateman, Rachel McAdams) are a couple whose usual game night gets elevated when Max’s brother (Kyle Chandler) organizes a murder mystery party for their group to partake in. However, it’s not long before the lines between real and fake start to get blurred.

Related: ‘Friday Night Lights’ Star Kyle Chandler: Where Is He Now & Will There Be a Reboot?

As the game goes on, the group learns that the external players bringing this murder mystery to life may be more dangerous than they had anticipated, and Max’s brother’s kidnapping, which they assumed was all part of the game, was legitimate.

2. The Gift (2015) Jason Bateman movies and TV shows

Simon and Robyn (Jason Bateman and Rebecca Hall) are a married couple who find their life turned upside down when an old acquaintance of Simon re-enters their lives.

As he makes his presence known more and more, Robyn learns that there’s more to the story, more to the mysterious Gordo and most importantly — more to her husband.

1. Ozark (2017 — 2022)

Ozark is perhaps one of Bateman’s most critically acclaimed roles, as his part as Marty Byrde won him countless accolades over the years. Marty is a financial planner that gets mixed up in the world of Mexican drug cartels, money laundering and more illicit activity.

The family relocates from Chicago to the Ozarks, where as the seasons go on, they find themselves dug deeper and deeper into the underworld of crime.

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