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Actors With Frequently Recurring Roles

Name the actors who have portrayed the same character in the highest number of films, and the characters that they portrayed in those films, not including Harry Potter.
Feature-length films with wide theatrical releases and a major American distributor only.
Only films from after 1957.
Not including roles that are exclusively voice/puppeteering work.
Small roles and uncredited cameos count! Harry Potter films do not.
Quiz by kalbahamut
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Last updated: September 3, 2015
First submittedMay 20, 2013
Times taken1,791
Rating3.22
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Appearances
Role
Actor
17, 1963-1999
Q
Desmond Llewelyn
15, 1962-1985
Miss Moneypenny
Lois Maxwell
10, 1958-1976
Dracula
Christopher Lee
9, 1958-1970
Larry
Larry Fine
9, 1958-1970
Moe
Moe Howard
9, 2005-2014
Madea
Tyler Perry
8, 1979-2013
Mr. Spock
Leonard Nimoy
8, 1979-1994
Scotty
James Doohan
8, 1994-2016
Silent Bob
Kevin Smith
8, 1994-2016
Jay
Jason Mewes
8, 2000-2016
Wolverine
Hugh Jackman
7, 1962-1983
James Bond
Sean Connery
7, 1973-1985
James Bond
Roger Moore
Appearances
Role
Actor
7, 1977-2015
C3-P0
Anthony Daniels
7, 1977-2015
R2-D2
Kenny Baker
7, 1979-1994
Captain Kirk
William Shatner
7, 1979-1994
Pavel Chekov
Walter Koenig
7, 1984-2003
Freddy Krueger
Robert Englund
7, 1984-1994
Larvell Jones
Michael Winslow
7, 1984-1994
Eugene Tackleberry
David Graf
7, 1984-1994
Eric Lassard
George Gaynes
7, 1995-2012
M
Judi Dench
7, 2001-2010
Machete
Danny Trejo
7, 2004-2010
Jigsaw
Tobin Bell
7, 2008-2016
Iron Man
Robert Downey Jr.
7, 2008-2015
Nick Fury
Samuel Jackson
+2
level 77
May 20, 2013
This didn't really turn out as well as I'd hoped. I got the idea walking out of Star Trek: Into Darkness and thinking about the fact that the original Spock had been in more Trek films than any other character, and at the same time I was walking past movie posters for The Wolverine and Iron Man 3 and I was thinking how with Avengers 2 RDJ is going to have played Tony Stark at least 6 times (assuming no future cameos in phase 2) and how cool that was. But... when I got around to making the quiz, first it got really bogged down with Harry Potter. :P blech. Like this site needs another HP quiz. Then I found I could not make it comprehensive and for all time because when you go back before the golden age of television, people and movie studios treated the cinema like television. Some actors played the same role over and over and over again because there were no sitcoms or TV dramas and movies filled the gap. For example, Clarence Mulford played Hopalong Cassidy an astonishing 66 times!
+1
level 77
May 20, 2013
So I set up the restriction that only movies after 1957 would count. I picked 1957 because this was the last year I Love Lucy was on the air, and really this was the transition point when Americans began sitting at home watching television all the time instead of going out to the movies. Even then, the quiz was too large and obscure. I had to get rid of foreign films (tons of extremely lengthy Japanese and Chinese film series out there), direct-to-video, porn, cartoons, etc. or else it was just too difficult to sort out. And after all that, the list was still too extensive to include anything less than 7 appearances. I got tired of researching actors that had played a role six times and just settled on making the cut-off seven. So, sorry about that Rocky Balboa, and Vin Diesel, and Iron Man... the original inspiration for the quiz. You got pushed off by stupid Filius Flitwick. :P
+2
level 77
May 21, 2013
sorry Gandalf, and R2-D2, and Uhura, and... etc etc etc...
+3
level 76
Jul 6, 2014
Just giving a word of support for Harry Potter. As a grandmother, I think the series teaches a wonderful thing to kids - it's not who you are, but the decisions you make which are important in life. I loved the books and movies, too, although it was sad that so much had to be left out of the movies, and they relied on action rather than content sometimes.
+1
level 77
Jul 7, 2014
I despise the movies, but, obviously there are plenty who disagree with me.
+1
level 77
Nov 16, 2014
major update and overhaul, details in comment below...
+1
level 77
May 20, 2013
I made this totally from scratch so... feel free to speak up if I missed someone. I'm sure I probably did.
+1
level 77
May 21, 2013
In my original comment I forgot to say that it's also cool that really, Hugh Jackman IS Wolverine. (and at least he made it on the quiz) It's not something that happens often these days where one actor really owns a role that is portrayed across many different movies and multiple different series. Robert Downey has done the same thing with Tony Stark but that was more by design because of the way that Marvel handles making its films. (X-Men and Spider-man are officially Sony properties for now, at least on the big screen) It would be cool to see Jackman show up in Avengers 2 I think, then he would not only be crossing over to 4 different series but also 2 different studios and film universes.
+1
level 77
Jun 4, 2013
Finally managed to get 100% on my own quiz- but I had to cheat on Tom Felton.
+1
level 73
Sep 12, 2013
got the one that nobody got right...gaynes...but failed to get most of the harry potter people
+1
level 77
Sep 13, 2013
cool. Some love for Cmdt Lassard...
+1
level 55
Dec 3, 2013
What about Judi Dench? She played M in James Bond 7 times.
+1
level 77
Dec 4, 2013
Hey, you're right. :) Thanks for pointing that out. I'll add Dame Dench.
+1
level 34
Jan 16, 2014
Lol, I accidentally got M while trying to type "Mr. Spock"
+1
level 77
Jan 17, 2014
Yes, that's pretty much unavoidable. No way to fix it.
+1
level 49
Dec 21, 2015
Bernard Lee also portrayed the character "M" for eleven films 1962-1979, appearing in each of the films "Dr No" through to "Moonraker". :)
+1
level 77
Dec 22, 2015
Yes, you're right. I may or may not add him. The answers "M" and "Lee" are both already used elsewhere on the quiz, but I suppose I'll put him in with the next update.
+1
level 36
Dec 3, 2013
I thought the quiz was well done but it took me a minute to figure it out. I managed to get 30/58 on my first try but that was mainly due to the James Bond and Harry Potter actors. I suggest modifying the requirements to this list though. Have less secondary characters. The only characters from the Harry Potter Movies that I would count are Harry, Ron, Hermione, Snape, and then either McGonagall or Hagrid. There is no need to include the entire Weasley family and Flitwick when you can add main characters from other franchises, such as Vin Diesel in Fast & Furious movies and Judy Dench as M.
+1
level 77
Dec 4, 2013
I would consider that but what criteria could I use that would be fair and consistent to determine which characters were "main" or not? and Dench was omitted by error, Diesel will be added after the release of F&F 7.
+1
level 77
Dec 4, 2013
Oops, my mistake. I forgot that Diesel did not appear in 2F2F at all. Walker starred in the 2nd film, Diesel was busy making xXx. The 3rd starred neither of them but Diesel made a cameo appearance at the end. I guess if they make a F&F8 and Vin is in it then he might finally make this list.

On the other hand, I fixed the omission of Judi Dench. Now the scores are all reset and I need to go plug this quiz again. :P
+1
level 77
Feb 9, 2014
C3P0/Anthony Daniels would have gotten another bump in the rankings for their appearance in the LEGO Movie (had to look it up after I saw it but that was indeed Daniels and Billy Dee Williams), except I'm not counting voice-only work for the purpose of this quiz.
+1
level 77
Apr 12, 2014
At the rate they're going, you'll be able to add John McClane/Bruce Willis from the Die Hard franchise...
+1
level 77
Apr 13, 2014
Maybe. Though Willis has said he's going to walk away after the sixth film. We'll see.

I do need to add Nick Fury to this quiz, though. With his appearance in Captain America: The Winter Soldier he's up to 7 big screen appearances played by the same actor, and he was even on the Agents of SHIELD TV series, though that doesn't count for the purposes of this quiz.
+1
level 77
Apr 13, 2014
whoops, I mean six appearances. But he'll be at 7 when Avengers 2 comes out.
+1
level 63
Jan 10, 2019
Yea with the subject of who has aplayed a role multiple times, he was definately one of the firsts to come to mind. Looking at the dates I thought of star trek. And bond ofcourse. BUt didnt make it much further than that. Maybe make one with just the leading role? And then you can drop it down to 5 apearances. (cause 6 of the roles, and 15 of these actors I have never heard about. Not that my knowlegde should be the standard. But I mean, people tend to remember the leading roles the best)
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level 55
May 28, 2014
I think Scott should work for Scotty, as that's his real name.
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level 77
May 28, 2014
Good point. Next time I update this I'll try to remember to add that as an acceptable answer.
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level 32
Jul 16, 2014
About the Harry Potter actors: apparently Devon Murray played Seamus in 8, Josh Herdman played Goyle in 8, Geraldine Somerville played Lily in 8, Julie Waters played Molly in 7, Mark Williams played Arthur in 7, Adrian Rawlins played James in 7, Alfie Enoch played Dean in 7... I actually have to sleep now, but there could be more (or less, I'm not positive about all of them). Thanks.
+1
level 77
Jul 16, 2014
I don't know who any of those actors or characters are. Looked up a few of them and appears you may be right. poo poo. I might just have to make a version of this quiz that does not include Harry Potter.
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level 77
Nov 21, 2014
...I decided just to remove Harry Potter completely. I didn't like doing it, it makes the quiz incomplete, but they really did an amazing job of keeping all of the ensemble on board through the entire very lengthy series of films and as a result, if you count them, then more than half the quiz is Harry Potter actors. Many of whom are only minor characters. I think it's better without Potter.
+1
level 22
Sep 2, 2014
eugene levy should be in this list, he played Jim's dad in all 8 american pie movies
+1
level 77
Sep 4, 2014
My god. Have there really been 8 of them? Well I'll look into it when I update the quiz. I'm planning to do a small overhaul soon and remove all of the Harry Potter actors and just add a caveat that the quiz does not include Harry Potter. However, I think that many of the Pie movies that would get Levy a spot on this list are probably disqualified because they are direct-to-video and did not have a "wide theatrical release with a major American distributor." but I'll look it up and thanks for the tip. ;-)
+1
level 77
Nov 21, 2014
I looked it up and several of the Pie sequels were in fact direct-to-video and thus do not count for this quiz. However, I gave him a spot on this spin-off quiz I did, which was not intended to be comprehensive and so I could loosen up the criteria for inclusion.
+1
level 44
Sep 10, 2014
Wow, this was terribly difficult. I never liked Star Trek. And although I saw every Harry Potter movie but the last I found them completely forgettable and didn't remember the characters from one film to the next, except the main ones. I was expecting things like James Bond, Indiana Jones, Dirty Harry, only to see the minimum was 7! I almost gave up but I lucked into 17 of them. Proud to have gotten Krueger and Englund though.
+1
level 77
Sep 10, 2014
Happy to challenge you. I agree the Harry Potter movies were forgettable. I saw all of them except the last one which I made a point of avoiding since I regretted getting suckered in to seeing all the previous ones one way or another. When I remove the HP actors then this quiz will suddenly be a much more manageable size, I just have been busy preparing to leave Saudi Arabia and haven't gotten around to updating it yet.
+1
level 59
Nov 15, 2014
I'm not sure about the movie count for Scotty. He should have the same number as Chekov. Doohan played another character called Scotty in another movie but it was just a joke - it wasn't Montgomery Scott. Unless he is another Star Trek movie I don't know about. He was in STTMP, II through VI, plus Generations. That's 7, same as Chekov. Is there another?
+1
level 77
Nov 15, 2014
I was counting his appearance in The Naked Gun as Scotty. I guess that's the movie you are saying was just a joke?
+1
level 59
Jan 18, 2015
Yes, he was a character named "Scotty" but it wasn't the same character - it wasn't Montgomery Scott of the USS Enterprise. It was just a cop named Scotty played by him as a joke. I don't think it should count.
+1
level 77
Jan 18, 2015
He was obviously supposed to be the same basic character even if in an alternate reality where he was born centuries earlier and worked as a police officer, but, doesn't really matter that much does it? Even if you didn't count that appearance he has still played Montgomery Scott enough times on film to get on this quiz (7).
+2
level 77
Nov 16, 2014
UPDATED AND OVERHAULED. I decided to simply remove Harry Potter from this quiz and put in a caveat. I have no good reason to do it, other than it makes the quiz significantly less cluttered and more manageable which I think makes it better. I'm going to spin this off in to two other quizzes which will both include a couple Potter characters, maybe that will make up for it. I also updated.

brief note: while doing research for the update, I came across the fact that on IMDB there are seven film appearances each listed for both Jay and Silent Bob (played by Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith). However, one of those seven films is something called Lucy You Love It. I can't find any information about this film at all, except that it was apparently released in 2000 and in at least one place it's listed as a documentary. Other than that, nothing. So I'm going to assume that it did not have a wide theatrical release and is therefore not counted for this quiz.
+1
level 71
Sep 2, 2015
Jay and Silent Bob actually have been in seven movies to date that meet your criteria (and an eighth to release in 2016): Clerks (1994) Mallrats (1995) Chasing Amy (1997) Dogma (1999) Scream 3 (2000) Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001) Clerks II (2006) Clerks III (2016)
+1
level 77
Sep 3, 2015
Hey... you're right. How did I miss that? I don't remember Scream 3 being listed at IMDb before. Either it was recently added or I somehow overlooked it. Thanks for bringing this to my attention. If I have time to update I will add them in.
+1
level 77
Sep 3, 2015
Actually maybe it was because it's debatable whether or not the original Clerks ever saw a "wide theatrical release." On one hand, it was screened nationally. On the other hand, a "wide release" is specifically defined in some places as 600+ sceens. Clerks was never screening on more than 50 at the same time.
+1
level 77
Sep 3, 2015
But given Clerks 3 coming out later... I'll add them both to the quiz.
+1
level 59
Jan 18, 2015
I don't see how Iron Man is in 7 movies. I count 3 iron man movies, 2 avengers movies - makes 5. What are the other 2? Do you mean Civil War and the Hulk? But the Hulk movie was just a cameo, no? And Civil war is pretty far out to count, I think.
+1
level 77
Jan 18, 2015
The clue gives dates through 2016, and the caveats indicate that cameos count, so yes, Civil War and The Incredible Hulk are both counted.
+1
level 41
May 31, 2015
I don't think this has been mentioned, but what about Bernard Lee? He played M in 11 bond films according to Wikipedia. And even if that's wrong I am sure he's in at least 7.
+1
level 77
Jun 1, 2015
Wasn't mentioned before. Good catch. I'll consider adding him when I've got time.
+1
level 77
Jun 1, 2015
Though it actually wouldn't make the quiz any more difficult as Lee is already an answer for Christopher Lee and M is already a character played by Judi Dench... :) but I will look into it.
+2
level 77
Nov 22, 2015
Note to self: when updating this next, add Stallone for his 7th portrayal of Rocky Balboa in Creed.
+1
level 57
Dec 21, 2015
Stallone as Rocky should be up to 7 as of December 2016. Rocky 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, Rocky Balboa (Rocky 6), and Creed.
+1
level 77
Dec 21, 2015
As I noted myself in the previous comment. But thanks all the same.
+1
level 57
Dec 26, 2015
Haha, fair enough. First time commenting on something, didn't realize all the new comments appeared at the bottom of the list, instead of the top.
+1
level 84
Mar 31, 2017
Patrick Stewart has now been in all 3 Wolverine spinoffs in addition to the 4 X-Men movies from the original timeline. Be sure to include him when you update.
+1
level 44
May 9, 2017
Also need to add Ford as Han Solo. If there is any debate as to episode 7 being a significant role, he is essential to the story as there would not be anyone to find Rey and make her want to be a jedi/guide her towards the eventual purpose of the story
+1
level 77
May 10, 2017
No debate. That was definitely a significant role. I just haven't updated this quiz since before The Force Awakens was released.
+2
level 59
Jul 17, 2018
Why should Harrison Ford as Han Solo count? He was only in 4 Star Wars movies - the cutoff is 7. A new Hope, Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi and the Force Awakens. He wasn't in episodes 1-3.
+1
level 77
Jul 17, 2018
True. I honestly am not sure what I was thinking when I wrote that.
+1
level 14
May 28, 2017
The moment when you realize that Chris Evans doesn't make the cut. He was in First Avenger, Winter Soldier, Avengers, Age of Ultron,and soon to be, Infinity War
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level 30
Jun 16, 2017
Chris Evans as Captain America should be added. He has appeared in Captain America: the First Avenger, The Avengers, Thor: the Dark World, Captain America: the Winter Soldier, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ant Man, and Captain America: Civil War.
+1
level 77
Jun 17, 2017
He was in Thor 2? I don't remember that. Was it a post-credits scene?
+1
level 67
May 16, 2019
Not sure if this counts but captain america also shows up in spider-man: homecoming but only on a screen. he is in these cheesy videos that they show at peter's highschool, one of them is shown when he's in detention and captain america is giving a speech about being a good student or something like that.
+2
level 14
Sep 22, 2017
No, he was in the one scene where Thor broke Loki out of prison and they're walking down the hall or whatever it was, and Loki's just like " Well, we could be a little less conspicuous." And the last illusion he does is a Captain America one.
+1
level 14
Sep 22, 2017
Kalby, I'm sorry, but you need to add Alec Baldwin as Jack Ryan. He's played that role 6-7 times!
+1
level 77
Sep 22, 2017
well... if it was 6 times then he missed the cutoff. :) I haven't updated this quiz in a long time and there are several I know I need to add now. If I ever do update it again then I'll look into it. Thanks. ;-)
+2
level 65
Jun 16, 2018
And now Chris Hemsworth makes the list with 3 Thor films, 3 Avengers films, and the post-credits scene in Dr. Strange.
+2
level 65
Jun 16, 2018
And if we're including upcoming films, Scarlett Johannsen as Black Widow and Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts.
+2
level 77
Jun 16, 2018
yeah this quiz is years out of date. If I ever do update it I'm afraid I might have to exclude the MCU the same way I excluded Harry Potter, otherwise the quiz will be 3/4 Marvel characters.
+1
level 24
Oct 7, 2018
wheres chris evans as captain america he has been in 9 marvel films
+1
level 77
May 16, 2019
I haven't updated this in a while.
+1
level 67
May 16, 2019
Curious that Larry and Moe are on here but not curly. did they replace him at some point?
+1
level 77
May 16, 2019
Curly replaced Shemp.
+1
level 45
Jun 18, 2019
Peter Mathew played Chewbacca in Star Wars S Ep 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and Solo: A Star Wars Story
+1
level 77
Jun 18, 2019
Mayhew. But yes, I haven't updated this in a long time.
+1
level 76
Jul 29, 2019
Patrick Stewart as Professor X in the X-Men series has appeared in 7 movies: X-Men, X-Men 2, X-Men the Last Stand, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, The Wolverine, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and Logan
+1
level 77
Jul 29, 2019
I last updated this 2 years before Logan came out.
+1
level 62
Sep 17, 2019
Crushing that Jim Varney's Ernest character didn't make it. He was in nine films, but it looks like only five of them had a theatrical release. I loved those movies as a kid, but I sense they're probably unwatchable through adult eyes.
+1
level 77
Sep 17, 2019
I quite liked Ernest Goes to Camp, but I think even as a kid I thought the many subsequent films were increasingly bad.
+1
level 77
Sep 17, 2019
...and... just found some clips from Ernest Goes to Camp on YouTube. Yeah. Unwatchable.