The Walking Dead series ran for 12 years, 11 seasons, and 177 episodes. That is quite an accomplishment for a TV series. The series broke new ground in the zombie genre and pop culture. Several guest actors appear throughout the series, some of whom you may not have known about or recognized due to SFX makeup. Check out the cameos and guest appearances featured in The Walking Dead series
Sam Witwer is well known for his roles in The Mist, Being Human, Battlestar Galactica, and more were featured in season 1 of The Walking Dead. Viewers wouldn’t have recognized him as he was the walker featured with Rick (Andrew Lincoln) in the tank in Atlanta. Known as the Tank Walker, original showrunner Frank Darabont had an idea to tell more of this person’s story before becoming a member of the undead in season 2. You can read about it here.
Scott Ian, guitarist, and co-founder of the thrash metal band Anthrax, played a walker in season 5. This was at the site where Rick hid a gun in a blender outside of Alexandria. When he returned, the gun was missing. After he and Carl (Chandler Riggs) take out some walkers, another grabs Rick from under a pile of junk. Carl stabs him in the head. This was Ian.
Chris Hardwick hosted Talking Dead, The Walking Dead aftershow, from season 2 of through the series’ final season. He was offered the opportunity to stand in as a walker numerous times but didn’t accept until season 9. He was featured in “Scar” as a walker who attempts to attack Judith (Cailey Fleming).
Hines Ward is a well-known name in college football as he was a wide receiver for the University of Georgia, along with fellow Walking Dead actor IronE Singleton and in the NFL for numerous honors while playing for the Pittsburg Steelers. His connection with Singleton helped him land the role of a walker in “The Suicide Kings” in season 3. Ward spent two hours in the makeup chair to be transformed for his role.
The Walking Dead – famous guest-starring actors
Ethan Embry is known for his roles in Can’t Hardly Wait, That Thing You Do!, and Grace & Frankie. In season 6 of The Walking Dead, he joined the series as a member of Alexandria named Carter. He doesn’t care for Rick and how he wants to do things but goes along and is eventually bitten by a walker.
M.C. Gainey is an actor who plays menacing roles and is probably best known for his roles in Con Air and Justified, but many might not know he also briefly starred on TWD. In the season 5 episode “Slabtown,” Gainey played a walker.
Keisha Castle-Hughes is an actress who is well-known for her role as Obara Sand on Game of Thrones. Before being cast in that role, she starred in the same episode Gainey (above) starred in, “Slabtown.” She played Joan, a patient at Grady Memorial who was one of Gorman’s (Cullen Moss) victims who a walker bit, had her arm amputated, and chose to end her life by opening her stitches and bleeding out. She was put down by Dawn Lerner (Christine Woods).
Rutina Wesley is known for her roles in True Blood and Queen Sugar, and in between those two series took time to star in one episode of The Walking Dead. She played Jocelyn, an old friend of Michonne’s (Danai Gurira), in the season 9 episode “Scars.”
Alica Witt played Paula, a member of the Saviors, in season 6. She met with Carol (Melissa McBride) and Maggie (Lauren Cohan), which ended badly for Paula. She starred in two episodes, “Not Tomorrow Yet” and “The Same Boat.” Witt is known for her roles in Urban Legend and Two Weeks Notice.
Thora Birch is an actress known for her Ghost World and Hocus Pocus roles. She played a member of the Whisperers known as Gamma/Mary during season 10 of the series. She tried to redeem herself but met a gruesome end at the hands of Beta (Ryan Hurst).
Michael Biehn, known for The Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgement Day, played the leader of Riverbend in season 11 of The Walking Dead. He didn’t last long but made an impact with the skulls of his enemies displayed on his wall.
Robert Patrick joined The Walking Dead for the episode “One More” in season 11 as twins, Mays, and his brother. It was a disturbing and amazing episode featuring Gabriel (Seth Gillam) and Aaron (Ross Marquand). Patrick is well known for his roles in Terminator 2: Judgement Day, The Faculty, and many more.