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Roots Cast List

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Updated June 14, 2019 39.2k views 30 items

Roots cast list, including photos of the actors when available. This list includes all of the Roots main actors and actresses, so if they are an integral part of the show you'll find them below. You can various bits of trivia about these Roots stars, such as where the actor was born and what their year of birth is. This cast list of actors from Roots focuses primarily on the main characters, but there may be a few actors who played smaller roles on Roots that are on here as well.

This list contains items like Ian McShane and Ed Asner

If you are wondering, "Who are the actors from Roots?" or "Who starred on Roots?" then this list will help you answer those questions.

In most cases you can click on the names of these popular Roots actors and actresses to find out more information about them. If you're looking for a particular Roots actor or actress, then type their name into the "search" bar to find them directly.
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1
Alex Haley is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Roots Cast List
Alexander Murray Palmer Haley (August 11, 1921 – February 10, 1992) was an American writer and the author of the 1976 book Roots: The Saga of an American Family. ABC adapted the book as a ...more
2
Ben Vereen is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, Intruders, Tenspeed and Brown Shoe
Ben Vereen (born October 10, 1946) is an American actor, dancer, and singer who has appeared in numerous Broadway theatre shows. Vereen graduated from Manhattan's High School of Performing
3
Chuck Connors is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, The Rifleman, Werewolf
Kevin Joseph Aloysius "Chuck" Connors (April 10, 1921 – November 10, 1992) was an American actor, writer, and professional basketball and baseball player. He is one of only 13 athletes ...more
4
Cicely Tyson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, The Women of Brewster Place, The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman
Cicely L. Tyson (born December 19, 1924) is an American actress and former fashion model. In a career spanning more than six decades, she became known for her portrayal of strong ...more
5
Beverly Todd is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Roots Cast List
Love of Life, The Redd Foxx Show, Having Babies
Beverly Todd (born July 11, 1946) is an American actress, producer and writer. She is known for her roles in films Brother John (1971), Moving (1988), Lean on Me (1989) and The Bucket List
6
Ed Asner is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Roots Cast List
The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Gargoyles, Roots
Yitzhak Edward Asner (; born November 15, 1929) is an American actor, voice actor and a former president of the Screen Actors Guild. He is primarily known for his role as Lou Grant during the ...more
7
Georg Stanford Brown is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, North and South, The Rookies
Georg Stanford Brown (born June 24, 1943 in Havana, Cuba) is a Cuban-American actor and director, perhaps best known as one of the stars of the ABC police television series The Rookies from ...more
8
John Amos is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Roots Cast List
The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Good Times, Roots
John Allen Amos Jr. (born December 27, 1939) is an American actor known for his roles as James Evans, Sr. on the CBS television series Good Times and in the 1977 miniseries, Roots, for which he ...more
9
Leslie Uggams is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, All My Children, Backstairs at the White House
Leslie Marian Uggams (born May 25, 1943) is an American actress and singer. Beginning her career as a child in the early 1950s, Uggams is recognized for portraying Kizzy Reynolds in the ...more
10
Doug McClure is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Roots Cast List
Doug McClure The Virginian, Out of This World, Search
Douglas Osborne McClure (May 11, 1935 – February 5, 1995) was an American actor whose career in film and television extended from the 1950s to the 1990s. He is best known for his role as the ...more
11
LeVar Burton is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Roots Cast List
Star Trek: The Next Generation, Captain Planet and the Planeteers, Roots
Levardis Robert Martyn Burton Jr. (born February 16, 1957) is an American actor, presenter, director and author. He is best known for his role as Lt. Commander Geordi La Forge in Star Trek: The ...more
12
Lloyd Bridges is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, Police Story, Sea Hunt
Lloyd Vernet Bridges Jr. (January 15, 1913 – March 10, 1998) was an American film, stage and television actor who starred in a number of television series and appeared in more than 150 feature ...more
13
Lorne Greene is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Roots Cast List
Bonanza, Roots, Battlestar Galactica
Lorne Hyman Greene, (born February 12, 1915 – September 11, 1987) was a Canadian actor, radio personality and singer. His television roles include Ben Cartwright on the western Bonanza, and ...more
14
Louis Gossett, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, Touched by an Angel, Backstairs at the White House
Louis Cameron Gossett Jr. (born May 27, 1936) is an American actor. He is best known for his Academy Award winning role as Gunnery Sergeant Emil Foley in the 1982 film An Officer and a ...more
15
Lynda Day George is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Roots Cast List
Mission: Impossible, Roots, Rich Man
Lynda Louise Day George (born December 11, 1944) is an American television and film actress whose career spanned three decades from the 1960s to the 1980s. She was a cast member on Mission: ...more
16
Ian McShane is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Roots Cast List
Deadwood, Dallas, Jesus of Nazareth
Ian David McShane (born 29 September 1942) is an English actor. He is known for his television performances, particularly the title role in the BBC series Lovejoy (1986–1994) and as Al ...more
17
Maya Angelou is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, The Richard Pryor Show
Maya Angelou ( (listen); born Marguerite Annie Johnson; April 4, 1928 – May 28, 2014) was an American poet, singer, memoirist, and civil rights activist. She published seven autobiographies, ...more
18
Moses Gunn is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, The Women of Brewster Place, Father Murphy
Moses Gunn (October 2, 1929 – December 16, 1993) was an American actor of stage and screen. An Obie Award-winning stage player, he co-founded the Negro Ensemble Company in the 1960s. His 1962 ...more
19
Olivia Cole is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, North and South, The Women of Brewster Place
Olivia Carlena Cole (November 26, 1942 – January 19, 2018) was an American actress.
20
Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs ... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, Welcome Back, Kotter
Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs (born September 4, 1953) is an American actor and singer. He has appeared in a number of films and television shows, including Claudine (1974), Cooley High (1975), Roots ...more
21
Ralph Waite is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Roots Cast List
NCIS, Carnivàle, Roots
Ralph Waite (June 22, 1928 – February 13, 2014) was an American actor and political activist, best known for his role as John Walton, Sr. on The Waltons (1972–1981), which he occasionally ...more
22
Robert Reed is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Roots Cast List
The Brady Bunch, Roots, Mannix
Robert Reed (born John Robert Rietz Jr.; October 19, 1932 – May 12, 1992) was an American actor. He played Kenneth Preston on the legal drama The Defenders from 1961 to 1965 alongside E. G. ...more
23
Sandy Duncan is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, My Little Pony, The Hogan Family
Sandra Kay "Sandy" Duncan (born February 20, 1946) is an American singer, dancer, comedian and actress of stage and television. She is known for her performances in the Broadway ...more
24
Scatman Crothers is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Roots Cast List
The Transformers, Roots, Hong Kong Phooey
Benjamin Sherman Crothers (May 23, 1910 – November 22, 1986), known professionally as Scatman Crothers, was an American actor and musician. He played Louie the Garbage Man on the TV show Chico ...more
25
Thalmus Rasulala is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Roots Cast List
Roots, The Sophisticated Gents
Thalmus Rasulala (born Jack Crowder; November 15, 1939 – October 9, 1991) was an American actor with a long career in theater, television, and movies. Noted for starring roles in Blaxploitation ...more