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From ‘Roseanne’ to ‘The Big Lebowski’ Here Are John Goodman’s Top 10 Movies and TV Shows, Ranked! 

We explore John Goodman's best projects—did your favorite make the list?

Few voices are as recognizable on big and small screens as beloved TV dad John Goodman’s. The longtime Roseanne star has enjoyed great success from these John Goodman movies and TV shows — from a voice actor to his time as family patriarch Dan Connor on the ABC sitcom (a character he’s remarkably still playing today), and most notably voicing the character of Sulley in Disney/Pixar’s Monsters, Inc. 

The actor recently made headlines for his incredible 100-pound weight loss and has also admitted to having a drinking problem for more than three decades. But that didn’t stop the 71-year-old from contributing to over 70 films through his nearly 50-year career. 

MUST READ: John Goodman Has Lost Even *More* Weight — See the Incredible Photos!

man laying posed on Hollywood walk of fame; john goodman movies and tv shows
John Goodman at Hollywood Walk of Fame (2017)Alberto E. Rodriguez / Staff

With nine years on Roseanne under his belt, a revival and spin-off, and his roles in an array of cult classics, Goodman shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. He remains in demand for his ability to transition from comedy to drama effortlessly and seamlessly, sometimes all at once. 

Here, we look at the top ten movies and films of Goodman’s career, ranked in descending order and ending with our favorite. While we had to deem the first few on the list as ‘the worst,’ they all hold a special place in our hearts! 

10. Coyote Ugly (2000): John Goodman movies and TV shows

Although Coyote Ugly — a movie about a group of twenty-somethings who work in a New York City saloon — was panned by critics, it grossed $113 million at the box office and bar-danced its way to cult classic status. It even spurred an international franchise of bars of the same name.  

Goodman plays Bill Sanford, the helicopter dad of the main character, Violet (Piper Perabo). Violet is an unknown songwriter who gets sidetracked by her job at Coyote Ugly. Goodman was the biggest name cast in the movie at the time — which counted Tyra Banks, Perabo, and Bridget Moynahan among its stars. 

9. The Flintstones (1994)

Another film that was blasted by critics but a box office success was The Flintstones, the movie inspired by the long-running animated series of the same name. Goodman was cast as—you guessed it—the dad, Fred Flintstone. 

Goodman has said he was “sandbagged” into taking the role by Steven Spielberg, joking in a podcast interview, “Oh God. Not this. I knew I was going to hear Yabba Dabba Doo for the rest of my life.” 

8. Arachnophobia (1990) : John Goodman movies and TV shows

Arachnophobia brought everyone’s worst fear to life—an invasion of creepy crawly but aggressive spiders in a small California town. Goodman plays Delbert McClintock, an eccentric exterminator who’s up against his greatest enemy yet. 

Goodman was reportedly hired to bring some humor to the horror film, which Disney called a ‘thrillomedy.’ It turns out it paid off; it grossed more than $53 million at the box office. 

7. Revenge of the Nerds (1984) 

Goodman has a penchant for taking roles in movies that go on to become cult faves—and Revenge of the Nerds is no different. Goodman memorably plays football coach Coach Harris in the 1984 flick about a group of bullied high school misfits who decide to fight back against the popular kids. 

Nearly 40 years later, many accounts across YouTube still share Goodman’s infamous locker room “pep talk” scene. 

6. Patriot’s Day (2016) : John Goodman movies and TV shows

Although he’s best known for his comedic roles, Goodman has occasionally taken on a serious part. Such is the case with the 2016 movie Patriot’s Day, which was inspired by the real-life events of the Boston Marathon bombing. 

Goodman plays Boston police commissioner Ed Davis. He told CBS News that he felt a lot of “pressure” making this movie. “I put so much pressure on myself, and we had such a big job to do that I had to just forget about it and focus on what we were doing,” Goodman told the news outlet. 

5. Raising Arizona (1987) 

In yet another movie that has cemented itself in pop culture cult status, Goodman joined the ensemble of criminals on Raising Arizona as ex-con Gale Snoats. 

The Coen brothers’ film follows an unlikely pair who go to extreme lengths to have a child and the subsequent mayhem that ensues among the group, including stupid criminal Snoats. 

4. Blues Brothers 2000 (1998) : John Goodman movies and TV shows

While Blues Brothers may be synonymous with hilarious musical duo John Belushi and Dan Akroyd—John Goodman is a close third. The John Landis movie was based on a Saturday Night Live (SNL) skit in which Goodman was somewhat of a regular guest host. Although he didn’t appear in the first film in 1980, Goodman was cast to ‘replace’ Belushi in the 1998 sequel after he died in 1982.

3. Monsters, Inc. (2001)

In the early 2000s, Goodman was mostly heard and not seen, appearing in several animated films, including Monsters, Inc. and its prequel, Monsters University. The movie centers around Goodman’s “Sulley,” a hairy but lovable monster who helms the child-scaring company Monsters, Incorporated, and his best friend Mike (Billy Crystal). 

The film was the third highest-grossing film in 2001 and won an Academy Award. An animated TV series spinoff was produced in 2021 in which Goodman returned to voice Sulley. Goodman also voiced characters in The Emporer’s New Groove, The Jungle Book 2, Clifford’s Really Big Movie, The Princess and the Frog and Bee Movie. 

2. The Big Lebowski (1998) : John Goodman movies and TV shows

Perhaps Goodman’s most notable role, next to Roseanne, is in another Coen brothers film, The Big Lebowski, which earns second place on our list. Goodman plays Walter Sobchak, the gun-toting bowling buddy of the main character, slacker “The Dude” (Jeff Bridges). 

When “The Dude” is mistaken for a millionaire, two thugs attempt to coerce him into paying a debt by peeing on his rug. He enlists the help of Vietnam vet Sobchak for vindication, leading to a series of hilarious misadventures. 

In 2018, Goodman appeared on the Today show to address the film’s legacy. “There’s a whole generation now that’s growing up with this stuff, kids in college seeing it for the first time.”

1. Roseanne (1988-1997) and The Connors (2018-Present) 

Goodman credits the Roseanne Barr helmed sitcom about a fictional working-class family in Illinois for making him a household name. “Doing Roseanne made me famous. To this day, people will call me Dan Arnold. They will shout, ‘Where’s Roseanne?” he said. 

The actor was integral to the cast, playing Roseanne’s husband, Dan Connor. He appeared in every single episode of the show right up until its ninth season, when he was written out of most of the episodes. Viewers assumed Goodman’s character was dead until the 2018 revival, in which he appears very much alive. 

Roseanne fans were thrilled when the Connor family came to life again on their TV screens and learned that Dan was indeed still alive, but matriarch Roseanne (Roseanne Barr) was killed off after the actress made controversial remarks on Twitter. The spin-off features most of its original cast members plus Married… with Children star Katey Sagal. 

The ABC show began its sixth season in February of 2024.

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