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23 Actors Who Have Actually Played More Than One Role On A “Law & Order” Series
23 Actors Who Have Actually Played More Than One Role On A "Law & Order" Series,Before landing her critically acclaimed role as Gerri on <i>Succession</i>, J. Smith-Cameron appeared as four different characters in four episodes of <i>Law & Order</i> starting in 1992.

23 Actors Who Have Actually Played More Than One Role On A “Law & Order” Series

Given the storylines on Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU, and more, this post contains mentions of sexual assault.

1. First, Sarah Hyland appeared in two episodes of Law & Order: SVU in 2001 and 2009, playing two different characters. Her appearance in Season 10 is still regarded as one of the best guest-starring roles in the series.


Who he played: Paul Donatelli, whose wife is murdered, and Herman Capshaw, a former US army marksman who kidnapped a boy named Justin (played by Sebastian Stan).

Episodes he appeared in: “Turnstile Justice” (Season 11, Episode 2) and “Sheltered” (Season 13, Episode 22)

3. Pedro Pascal appeared in two episodes of Law & Order: Criminal Intent as different characters in 2006 and 2009 respectively. He’s also played roles on Law & Order and Law & Order: SVU.


Who he played: Reggie Luckman, an actor who is caught with a gun and a kidnapped girl, and Kevin Green, who is linked to the murder of a diplomat.

Episodes he appeared in: “Weeping Willow” (Season 6, Episode 10) and “The Glory That Was…” (Season 8, Episode 8)

4. Before landing her starring role as Det. Rollins on Law & Order: SVU, Kelli Giddish appeared in an episode in Season 8 as a character named Kara Bawson.


Who she played: Kara Bawson, a woman who is sexually assaulted, and then Det. Amanda Rollins, who begins working with the Special Victims Unit after moving from Atlanta.

Episodes she appeared in: “Outsider” (Season 8, Episode 12) and then as a series regular from Season 13 through Season 24.

5. Also, prior to starring as Det. Carisi on Law & Order: SVU, Peter Scanavino guest-starred in a Season 14 episode as a character named Johnny Dubcek.


Who he played: Johnny Dubcek, who assaulted two people, including a pedophile, and then ADA Dominick Carisi Jr., who was a detective with the Special Victims Unit before becoming ADA.

Episodes he appeared in: “Monster’s Legacy” (Season 14, Episode 13) and then as a series regular starting in Season 16.

6. Before starring on Grey’s Anatomy, Ellen Pompeo appeared in episodes of Law & Order in 1996 and 2000 as two different characters. Her work as Jenna Weber in a Season 6 episode was also one of her first acting credits.


Who she played: Jenna Weber, who is accused of murdering her mom and brother, and Laura Kendrick, who was serial killer Peter Williams’ partner.

Episodes she appeared in: “Savior” (Season 6, Episode 16) and “Fools for Love” (Season 10, Episode 15)

7. Chandra Wilson guest-starred in two episodes of Law & Order: SVU as two different characters. She played a nurse in a 2002 episode and then as Rachel Sorannis, an FBI agent, in a 2005 episode that aired a few months after Grey’s Anatomy Season 1 premiered.


Who she played: A nurse, who is asked about a sexual assault victim by Det. Benson, and Rachel Sorannis, an FBI agent who is assigned to help on a case involving a missing girl.

Episodes she appeared in: “Waste” (Season 4, Episode 8) and “911” (Season 7, Episode 3)

8. Prior to landing their breakout role on Grey’s Anatomy, Sara Ramirez popped up as two different characters on Law & Order: SVU in 2000 and 2002, respectively.


Who they played: The mother of a young boy who shot and killed his classmate, and Lisa Perez, a sex worker who reported an assault.

Episodes they appeared in: “Baby Killer” (Season 2, Episode 5) and “Chameleon” (Season 4, Episode 1)

9. Before starring on Shameless and The Bear, Jeremy Allen White had roles as two different characters on Law & Order in 2007 and 2008.


Who he played: Jeremy, a boy who is playing a game of strip chess when a body is discovered, and Andy Steel, who is at the scene of a shooting with his friends.

Episodes he appeared in: “Melting Pot” (Season 17, Episode 15) and “Driven” (Season 18, Episode 5)

10. Kelly Bishop has guest-starred on three episodes of Law & Order: SVU playing two different characters. She first appeared as a registrar in Season 1 and then returned to play Julia Zimmer in two episodes in Season 10.


Who she played: A registrar Det. Munch asks for help and defense attorney Julia Zimmer, who is later murdered.

Episodes she appeared in: “Slaves” (Season 1, Episode 22), “Persona” (Season 10, Episode 8), and “Zebras” (Season 10, Episode 22)

11. Long before she starred as Gerri on Succession, J. Smith-Cameron appeared in four episodes of Law & Order between 1992 and 2009 as four different characters. She’s also guest-starred on Criminal Intent and SVU, too.


Who she played: Ms. Moskowitz, who witnesses the murder of her two business associates, Paula Downing, whose son is murdered, Linda Dorsi, whose daughter is accused of arson and murder, and Attorney Ward, who is, well, an attorney.

Episodes she appeared in: “Severance” (Season 2, Episode 13), “Flight” (Season 9, Episode 4), “Blaze” (Season 14, Episode 5), and “Take-Out” (Season 19, Episode 16)

12. Hayden Panettiere has guest-starred twice on Law & Order: SVU as two different characters. She first appeared in a 2001 episode when she was only 12 years old, and then returned in 2005 for another episode.


Who she played: Ashley Austin Black, a young girl who becomes attached to Det. Benson, and Angela Agnelli, who confessed to killing a man in order to retrieve a sex tape.

Episodes she appeared in: “Abuse” (Season 2, Episode 11) and “Hooked” (Season 6, Episode 15)

13. Long before Stranger Things, David Harbour appeared in episodes of Law & Order in 1999 and 2008 as two different characters. His first appearance marked one of his earliest acting credits.


Who he played: A waiter who is questioned and Jay Carlin, a con artist.

Episodes he appeared in: “Patsy” (Season 10, Episode 7) and “Submission” (Season 18, Episode 12)

14. Before starring on The Vampire Diaries, Paul Wesley appeared as two different characters in Law & Order: SVU in 2000 and 2005, respectively.


Who he played: Danny Burrell, who best friend was sexually abused, and Luke Breslin, a baseball player with an addiction to steroids.

Episodes he appeared in: “Wrong Is Right” (Season 2, Episode 1) and “Ripped” (Season 7, Episode 4)

15. Ann Dowd has guest-starred as three different characters on Law & Order: SVU between 2001 and 2009. She’s also played four different characters on Law & Order, too.


Who she played: Louise Durning, a woman who is accused of killing rapists, Sally Wilkens, a mother who tries to protect her son, who is a rapist and murderer, and Lillian Siefeld, a nurse who works for a doctor whose accused of sexual assault.

Episodes she appeared in: “Victims” (Season 2, Episode 13), “Soulless” (Season 4, Episode 25), and “Lead” (Season 10, Episode 15)

16. Before returning to the show as serial killer William Lewis in Season 15 of Law & Order: SVU, Pablo Schreiber previously appeared as a totally different character in Season 8 in 2007.


Who he played: Dan Kozlowski, an ex-drug dealer who is awarded custody of his son, and William Lewis, a serial killer and rapist who tortures Det. Benson.

Episodes he appeared in: “Haystack” (Season 8, Episode 15), and then he became a recurring guest star starting in the Season 14 finale.

17. Paget Brewster has guest-starred as two characters on Law & Order: SVU during the time she was also starring on Criminal Minds. She appeared in a 2007 episode and then returned for two episodes playing Bureau Chief Paula Foster in 2012.


Who she played: Sheila Tierney DuMont, the adopted daughter of a man who was part of a group that robbed banks, and Paula Foster, a bureau chief ADA who was bribed to frame someone for murder.

Episodes she appeared in: “Scheherazade” (Season 8, Episode 10), “Lost Reputation” (Season 14, Episode 1), and “Above Suspicion” (Season 14, Episode 2)

18. Allison Janney appeared as two different characters on Law & Order in 1992 and 1994, five years before landing her notable role on The West Wing.


Who she played: Nora, a secretary who is questioned, and Ann Madsen, a witness against her corrupt business partner who is accused of murder.

Episodes she appeared in: “Star Struck” (Season 2, Episode 12) and “Old Friends” (Season 4, Episode 22)

19. Bradley Whitford has guest-starred twice on Law & Order: SVU, playing two different characters. He first appeared in a 2015 episode before his recent guest appearance in 2023.


Who he played: Frank Maddox, a television producer who is accused of sexually assaulting his sister-in-law, and Pence Humphreys, an author with dementia who murdered his wife.

Episodes he appeared in: “Reasonable Doubt” (Season 15, Episode 22) and “King of the Moon” (Season 24, Episode 15)

20. Broadway star Aaron Tveit has guest-starred in two episodes of Law & Order: SVU as two different characters in 2010 and 2011, respectively. He was also guest-starring on Gossip Girl around the same time.


Who he played: Jan Eyck, the boyfriend of a woman who is murdered, and Stevie Harris, a former basketball player who accused his coach of sexual assault.

Episodes he appeared in: “Beef” (Season 11, Episode 20) and “Personal Fouls” (Season 13, Episode 2)

21. While starring as Omar Little in The Wire, Michael K. Williams also appeared in Law & Order: SVU as two different characters. He first popped up in a Season 5 episode, and then he returned in Season 8. Michael also played three different characters in Law & Order.


Who he played: Double-D Gamble, who worked with Michael Baxter and was accused of kidnapping, and John Victor Bodine, a serial killer who also hired women for sex work.

Episodes he appeared in: “Escape” (Season 5, Episode 11) and “Underbelly” (Season 8, Episode 7)

22. Before landing her breakout role on GLOW, Betty Gilpin appeared on Law & Order: Criminal Intent as two different characters. She first popped up in a Season 6 episode in 2006, and then in Season 8 in 2009. Betty has also guest-starred on Law & Order and SVU.


Who she played: Amanda Dockerty, a US Army soldier home on leave who goes missing, and Stacey Hayes-Fitzgerald, who is the daughter of a politician who is shot.

Episodes she appeared in: “The War at Home” (Season 6, Episode 8) and “Playing Dead” (Season 8, Episode 1)

23. And finally, Friday Night Lights and Mike Flanagan Universe star Zach Gilford has guest-starred on Law & Order: SVU as two different characters. He first appeared in a 2005 episode and then popped up again in a 2019 episode.


Who he played: Kevin Wilcox, a lacrosse player who is accused of sexual assault, and James Miller, who sexually abused his stepdaughter.

Episodes he appeared in: “Contagious” (Season 6, Episode 11) and “The Burden of Our Choices” (Season 21, Episode 4)

There are obviously a ton more actors who have appeared as multiple characters in one (or even more) Law & Order universe shows; which other ones do you love? Tell us in the comments below!

Law & Order and Law & Order: SVU are currently streaming on Peacock

If you or someone you know has experienced sexual assault, you can call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE, which routes the caller to their nearest sexual assault service provider. You can also search for your local center here