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The Best Law & Order Actors

Updated June 14, 2019 826 votes 78 voters 1.4k views25 items

List RulesOnly main and supporting cast members - no guest stars. Vote based on their performances on Law & Order.

The Law & Order cast consists of some of the most recognizable faces in America due to the show's success not only during its 20-year run but also for its popularity as everyone's favorite re-run binge. Many of the actors on Law & Order were even recognized for their contributions to one of the best serial legal dramas of all time by racking up a series of awards for their performances. You might be surprised to learn, however, that not all the Law & Order characters earned the actor or actress who played them a guaranteed nomination. In fact, many of the best actors playing detectives and laywers on Law & Order only managed to get nominated for a shared award for best ensemble performance. 

Here you'll get the chance to decide which actors on the original Law & Order gave the greatest performance. Alongside each actor or actress, you'll find the character they played on Law & Order as well as any awards or nominations they received for their work on the show. Be sure and vote for your favorites in order to help reveal the Internet's choice for the best Law & Order actors of all time. 

 

  • Jerry Orbach
    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain

    Primetime Emmy Awards
    Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (2000)

    Screen Actors Guild Awards
    Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series (2005- Win)

    • Characters: Lennie Briscoe
    • Age: Dec. at 69 (1935-2004)
    • Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of America
    57
    5
    Were they great on Law & Order?

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  • Golden Globes
    Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama (1995)

    Primetime Emmy Awards
    Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (1997, 1999, 2000)

    Screen Actors Guild Awards
    Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series (1998, 1999- Win)

    • Characters: E.A.D.A. Jack McCoy
    • Age: 79
    • Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA
    52
    9
    Were they great on Law & Order?

    More Sam Waterston 

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  • Steven Hill
    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Fair use

    Primetime Emmy Awards
    Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (1998, 1999)

    Screen Actors Guild Awards
    Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001)

    • Characters: Adam Schiff
    • Age: 98
    • Birthplace: Seattle, Washington, USA
    33
    2
    Were they great on Law & Order?
  • Jesse L. Martin
    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain

    Image Awards
    Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series (2000, 2001, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008)

    Screen Actors Guild Awards
    Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2000, 2001, 2002, 2004)

    • Characters: Ed Green
    • Age: 51
    • Birthplace: Rocky Mount, Virginia, United States of America
    37
    7
    Were they great on Law & Order?