Watch These Tv Shows Written by Playwrights

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You've seen their work onstage, but did you know some of your favorite playwrights are working their magic for the small screen too? Since we can't go to the theater right now, we're getting our theater fix by bingeing shows created, produced, and written by playwrights from the U.S. and UK.

Check out some of our favorite shows, featuring theatrical voices, below, and get ready to start streaming!

"This Is Us" (NBC)

Bekah Brunstetter
Bekah Brustetter's plays include "F*cking Art" and "The Cake," which was inspired by the U.S. Supreme Court case Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. Her work in television is extensive, with credits including "Switched at Birth," "American Gods," and "This Is Us" (she's also a producer on the show).

Watch "This is Us" in the U.S. on NBC
Watch "This is Us" in the UK on Amazon Prime

"Shameless" (SHOWTIME)

Dominique Morisseau
The Tony-nominated playwright made her Broadway last season with "Ain't Too Proud: The Life and Times of the The Temptations." When she's not writing a heart-wrenching drama for the stage, she's pulling at the heart strings as a writer, story editor, and co-producer on Showtime's "Shameless."

Sheila Callaghan
Like Morisseau, Callaghan also brings the drama onstage and on screen for "Shameless." As a playwright, she's written multiple plays which include "Women Laughing Alone With Salad," which was featured on The Kilroys' List in 2014, and "That Pretty Pretty (Or, The Rape Play)."

Watch "Shameless" in the U.S. on SHOWTIME

"Smash" (NBC)

Theresa Rebeck
Theresa Rebeck is one of America's most prolific playwrights and holds the record of the most-produced female playwright on Broadway ("Mauritius," "Seminar," "Dead Accounts," and 2018's "Bernhardt/Hamlet"). There's a huge chance you've seen her work on television too. She created and executive produced the iconic and short-lived show "Smash," as well as written for the ABC drama “NYPD Blue," “L.A. Law," and “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.

Watch "Smash" in the U.S. on NBC
Watch "Smash" in the UK on Amazon Prime

"The L Word" (SHOWTIME)

Adam Rapp
Pulitzer Prize finalist Adam Rapp ("Red Light Winter") brought his play "The Sound Inside" to Broadway in 2019. He made the transition to television with Showtime's “The L Word," and the Starz drama series “Flesh and Bone."

Watch "The L Word" in the U.S. on SHOWTIME
Watch "The L Word" in the UK on Amazon Prime

"P-Valley" (Starz)

Katori Hall
Katori Hall's work can currently be found in "Tina: The Tina Turner Musical" but theater fans may also be familiar with her plays "The Mountaintop" or "The Hot Wing King" (recently produced Off-Broadway at Signature Theatre.) She's the showrunner and executive producer of the upcoming Starz drama series "P-Valley," which is set to premiere this summer.

Ming Peiffer
“Usual Girls” was a sold-out hit (and New York Times Critics Pick) when it had its world premiere at Roundabout Theatre. The feminist powerhouse of a play (which marked the Ming Peiffer's professional debut) was a deeply personal portrait of growing up female and Asian-American. Peiffer’s writing can also be found on screen — she’s a staff writer on two Netflix shows: “Gypsy” and “Locke & Key."

Watch "Gypsy" in the US on Netflix

"The Affair" (SHOWTIME)

Sarah Treem
Sarah Treem's plays have premiered off Broadway and across the U.S. at companies like Playwrights Horizons, South Coast Repertory, and Manhattan Theater Club, but she is perhaps best known for being the co-creator and showrunner of the Golden Globe-winning Showtime drama "The Affair." She was also a writer and co-executive producer on "House of Cards" and "In Treatment."

David Henry Hwang
Sarah Treem wasn't the only playwright working on "The Affair" — two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist and a Tony Award winner for “M. Butterfly, David Henry Hwang was a staff writer on the show.

Watch "The Affair" in the U.S. on Showtime

"Riverdale" (The CW)

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa is best known for his work for Marvel Comics and for the television series such as "Glee," "Big Love," "Riverdale," and "Chilling Adventures of Sabrina." For the stage, he wrote the book for the musical adaptation of "American Pyscho" and co-wrote "Spider-Man, Turn Off the Dark." We're sensing a common theme here.

Watch "Riverdale" in U.S. on The CW

"Boardwalk Empire" (HBO)

Itamar Moses
Before he won a Tony Award for "The Band's Visit," Itamar Moses was working in television as a producer, staff writer, and story editor on shows such as "The Affair," "Outsiders," "Boardwalk Empire," and "Men of a Certain Age."

Rolin Jones
Rolin Jones's plays include the 2006 Pulitzer Prize Finalist "The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow" and "Sovereignty." His work for television can be seen in "Boardwalk Empire," Showtime's "Weeds," and more.

Watch "Boardwalk Empire" in the U.S. on HBO
Watch "Boardwalk Empire" in the UK on Amazon Prime

"Brothers & Sisters" (ABC)

Jon Robin Baitz
Jon Robin Baitz is a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist for his plays "A Fair Country" and "Other Desert Cities." He created the ABC drama "Brothers & Sisters" and also worked on "The Slap" and "The West Wing."

Watch "Brothers & Sisters" in the U.S. on ABC
Watch "Brothers & Sisters" in the UK on Amazon Prime

"She's Gotta Have It" (Netflix)

Lynn Nottage
Lynn Nottage was the first (and remains the only) woman to have won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama twice — the first for “Ruined” (2009) and the second for “Sweat” (2017). When she's not making history onstage, she's was a producer and writer for the first season of Netflix's "She's Gotta Have It."

Watch "She's Gotta Have It" on Netflix

"Secret Diary of a Call Girl" (ITV2)

Lucy Prebble
Lucy Prebble is a British playwright who wrote the plays "The Sugar Syndrome," "The Effect," and "ENRON." She is now a series writer of ITV2’s acclaimed series "Secret Diary of a Call Girl."

Watch "Secret Diary of a Call Girl" in the U.S. on Hulu
Watch "Secret Diary of a Call Girl" in the UK on Amazon Prime

"Britannia" (Sky Atlantic)

Jez Butterworth
Theater fans may know Jez Butterworth for his Tony Award-winning play "The Ferryman," but he also created the Sky Atlantic's historical fantasy drama series "Britannia."

Watch "Brittania" on Sky Atlantic

"House of Cards" (Netflix)

Beau Willimon
Beau Willimon helped develop the American version of the series "House of Cards" and served as showrunner for the first four seasons, but before his work in television his plays were produced by MCC Theater, Ars Nova, HERE Arts Center, Battersea Arts Centre in London, and more.

Watch "House of Cards" on Netflix

"The Morning Show" (Apple TV+)

Jeff Augustin
Miami-born playwright Jeff Augustin's plays include "Where the Mountain Meets the Sea," The New Englanders," and "Little Children Dream of God." He's currently a writer on the three-time Golden Globe-nominated "The Morning Show."

Watch "The Morning Show" on Apple TV Plus.

"Orange is the New Black" (Netflix)

Nick Jones
Nick Jones is known for his work as a writer and producer on the first four seasons of the Netflix series "Orange is the New Black." For the stage, he's written several critically acclaimed works including the musical "Jollyship the Whiz-Bang," "The Coward," and "Trevor."

Watch "Orange is the New Black" on Netflix

"GLOW" (Netflix)

Liz Flahive
Beginning her career as a playwright, Liz Flahive wrote "From Up Here" and "The Madrid." She was the producer, executive story editor, and writer on Showtime's "Nurse Jackie," producer and writer for Showtime's "Homeland," and the co-creater, executive producer, and writer of Netflix's "GLOW."

Watch "GLOW" on Netflix