Ran: Nine seasons, 1976–1985
In what has to be one of the strangest movie-to-TV transitions, writer/creator Robert Getchell took the characters from Martin Scorsese's 1974 feminist drama Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore and put them in…a comedy? Once you get past the cognitive dissonance of the movie's single-mother and waitress Alice Hyatt and her cohorts at Mel's Diner being turned into comic figures, however, you can see why the show was such a success; it was a Seventies sitcom, yes, but it was a stellar Seventies sitcom. The ensemble cast had real chemistry, the talented Linda Lavin rightfully became a TV star thanks to the role and the phrase "Kiss my grits!" became part of the cultural lexicon. It was not the film, but you have to tip your cap to this CBS series for its endurance and long tenure in the Nielsen's Top 30 — and be sure to tip your waitresses.
Success rate: 7