Michael Rooker movies and TV shows to watch if you're missing The Walking Dead

Michael Rooker has had an extensive career with many notable credits to his name.
New York Comic Con 2023 - Day 3
New York Comic Con 2023 - Day 3 / Bryan Bedder/GettyImages

Actor Michael Rooker made a name for himself in The Walking Dead universe for his portrayal of Merle Dixon, brother of Daryl (Norman Reedus). Although he began his journey as a horrible person, spewing racial and sexist slurs, he did try to redeem himself in the end. What other movies and shows does Rooker star in? Take a look!

Merle Dixon (Michael Rooker) and Ben (Tyler Chase) - The Walking Dead_Season 3, Episode 15_"This Sorrowful Life" - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC /

Rooker's career really took off after his role in Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1989). Directed by written by John McNaughton, the story is inspired by real convicted serial killers Henry Lee Lucas and Ottis Toole. The movie was released without a rating as the MPAA stated that no cut of this film could qualify for an R-rating. It is a chilling tale of senseless violence.

He would go on to more dramatic roles, starring in Eight Men Out, Mississippi Burning, and JFK, but would become well known for roles in action and thriller themed titles. He has starred in Sea of Love, Days of Thunder, Cliffhanger, and Tombstone.

He portrayed Yondu Udonta in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, starring in the Guardian of the Galaxy franchise. He reprised the role in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special and the What If...? series. He also made a cameo in the third Guardians film.

Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2..Yondu (Michael Rooker)..Ph: Film Frame..©Marvel Studios 2017 /

Michael Rooker list of movies and TV shows

His extensive career sees him with many movie credits, including more recent titles, The Out-Laws, a Netflix original, White Elephant, and Brian Durlin/Savant in The Suicide Squad. He portrayed Buddy in the recent F9, part of the Fast and Furious franchise. You can also see him in Brightburn, Fantasy Island, and Love and Monsters.

(Center) MICHAEL ROOKER as Savant in Warner Bros. Pictures’ action adventure “THE SUICIDE SQUAD,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release. © 2021 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved. /


Rooker's other TV credits include The Rookie, The Dark Tower, True Detective, Burn Notice, Criminal Minds, Law & Order, and many more.

He has done voice work in several video games, including Merle Dixon in The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct. Other games he is known for include Call of Duty: Black Ops I & II, Days of Thunder, and more recently, Crime Boss: Rockay City. He also voiced Lutador in the Netflix animated movie Vivo.

In the first season of Walking Dead director, EP, and SFX guru, Greg Nicotero's Creepshow, Rooker starred as Beau in the sixth episode "Drug Traffic."

Michael Rooker as Beau - Creepshow _ Season 3, Episode 6 - Photo Credit: Mark Hill/Shudder /

Next, Rooker stars in Kevin Costner's two-part epic Western Horizon: An American Saga. Costner co-wrote, produced and directed the films in which he also stars. Set in pre-and post-Civil War, the movies tells of westward expansion of the American West. The film has an ensemble cast that includes Sienna Miller, Sam Worthington, Jena Malone, Luke Wilson, Danny Huston, Will Patton, Tatanka Means, Jamie Campbell Bower, Giovanni Ribisit, and Walking Dead alum Tom Payne. The two-part film premieres Chapter 1 on June 28, 2024, and Chapter 2 on August 16, 2024.

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