Cameo Roles in The Wire – did you know?

There’s a few cameo roles in the Wire, here’s a few as mentioned in the book The Wire: Truth Be Told:

Detective Ray Cole
Played by The Wire‘s late executive producer, Robert F. Colesberry, Detective Cole was a low-key piece of work, better suited, perhaps to teaching high school history.

“It was a brave move on Bob’s part to get out there on the floor with the actors,” said Pat Moran. “And he had that handsome, beleaguered look of a homicide cop.”

English teacher in prison library during discussion of The Great Gatsby
Richard Price, author of the novels Clockers, Samaritan, and The Wanderers, as well as the screenplay for The Color of Money. Price led the study group where D’Angelo Barksdale, having seen the truth about his Uncle Avon, sees beyond Gatsby’s glitter as well.

The obnoxious, bald-headed newspaper reporter shouting questions at Frank Sobotka in the media scrum that follows his arrest by the FBI at the union hall
David Simon, executive producer and creator of The Wire…

Of this performance, Moran said, “He should stick to what he knows best.”

I really enjoy cameo roles, it’s a bit of an inside joke which is there to be discovered only by insiders and fans. Do you know any more camoes on the wire?



Filed under cameo roles, The Wire

19 responses to “Cameo Roles in The Wire – did you know?

  1. Patrick

    These aren’t actually cameos, but they’re similar in effect:
    Lt. Mello (Bunny’s man in the Western) is played by the real Jay Landsman. Landsman was a homicide detective in Baltimore years ago. He was a main character in the book HOMICIDE (led to the NBC series).
    The Deacon (counsel to Bunny and Cutty) was the real-life inspiration for Avon Barksdale.
    There’s a couple more I can’t remember at the moment.

    • mike smith

      your tie-ins are off here.the deacon is Lil Melvin(Williams).his life in NO WAY reflects on a character who’s life is based on a person 40 yrs,including criminal life,is way different.actually,the avon barksdale character is based on the real person of the same name,who’s street nickname is,guess what? bodie.a name of another character in the story,but in real life avon”bode” barksdale is one guy….im surprised no one picked up on the crooked city politician getting interviewed by the real-life version of himself,ex-senator larry young…im surprised mr young even played the role,i would have been embarrassed

      • mike smith

        and actually the real Bodie Barksdale had a cameo…when the hamster dam experiment was being started,and a group of “big guys” were talking about it,The real Bodie ,playing whoever,says “its a setup”,not to cooperate w the idea..he has on a red cap

  2. Yo, you see that Wire vs Sopranos story in Slate?

  3. >> eugene
    nope, u know of a digital copy i could view? anything good!?

  4. >> Patrick
    thanks for the comment, good stuff !

  5. David Holland

    The outgoing Governor of Maryland played a security guard at the statehouse when Garcetti was trying to meet with the fictional governor.

  6. Eli

    Kurt Schmoke, former mayor of Baltimore, played a health commisioner who helped advise Mayor Royce during the Hamsterdam affair. He has unorthodox views about legalization.

    Deandre McCullogh, the main character in David Simon’s book “The Corner” played Brother Mouzone’s assistant.

    • bunt

      also the “real life” Fran from david simmon’s “the corner” plays a public health worker in hamsterdam and tests bubbles for h.i.v at the end of the series. in her real life she actually does work with addicts.

  7. Gary D’Addario, a shift Lieutenant who was featured in David Simon’s “Homocide: A year on the Killing Streets, played a grand jury prosecutor.

    Clarence Clemons played Roman in two episodes.

    • Gladiator

      Was Re-watching the Wire Season 3, Ep 8 – saw the guy break up a fight between 2 young kids and said “Self, that looks just like Clarence Clemons!” AND HERE I FOUND YOUR 1 sentence note on it!! AWESOME Bill. ~!!!

  8. Rapper Jim Jones is simply hanging on a corner when snoop and chis walks out of a store in episode 8, season 5.

  9. I’m late to this party…but I’m pretty sure that Nancy Stoll (aka Mink Stole) of John Waters’ movie fame has a cameo in the first episode of Season 5. This is hilarious, because both Waters’ movies and The Wire are set in Baltimore.

    In The Wire, she works at The Baltimore Sun. Maybe she’ll appear again…I’m just about to start episode 2.

  10. Fred

    Last Episode of Season 5… there a shot of the pressroom and David Simon is seen chewing on a pen sitting at a desk… as a reporter.

  11. bunt

    “Snoop” pretty mcuh plays herslef on this show. Felisha “snoop” pearson was actually convicted of murder ata young age and got on the show by meeting the actor who plays Omar in a Baltimore club. other notable cameos in the fith season when Guss Hains goes to the bar to press some old sources and “Munch” of Simmons Homecide and later Law and Order is hanging out in the bar trying to get out of paying a tab. The Sun’s court reported is also a major writter on the the wire.

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    Left to right*** Chris, Snoop, Jim Jones.

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