Pop culture media are always making lists. I just read one in People titled “9 Films You Didn’t Know J.K. Simmons Was In”. Don’t forget the numerous ones about child stars and “Where Are They Know Segments”. I too make lists, but am far too nerdy for simple tabloid fare. Rather, I have decided to compile the names of all the actors that have appeared in two of Britain’s biggest series: Doctor Who and Harry Potter. Yes, I’m THAT nerdy. Here were go, in alphabetical order.
John Atterbury: Unknown unless you have a really good eye, memory or did extensive research like me. Atterbury appears as Phineas Nigellus Black in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and two Second Doctor Serials: The Mind Robber – in which he plays a robot – and one episode of The War Games, in which he portrays an alien guard.
Terence Bayler: Bayler is one of the few non-British born thesps on this list (he was birthed in Wanganui, New Zealand). He makes a brief appearance as the Bloody Baron in The Philosopher’s Stone, and appears as alien named Yendom in the First Doctor Serial The Ark, and also appeared in The War Games as Major Barrington
David Bradley: The wily character actor may be the most connected person on our list. Besides appearing as gruff janitor Argus Filch in seven of the eight Potter films (he did not appear in Deathly Hallows: Part 1), he played the conniving Solomon in the cheesy but endearing season 7 episode Dinosaurs on a Spaceship. But it doesn’t end there. Bradley has also voiced the vulture humanoid creatures Shamsheeth in two episodes of The Sarah-Jane Adventures, and in 2013 played First Doctor William Hartnell in the TV Movie that chronicles the making of the series: An Adventure in Space and Time. In other words, he is whovian royalty.
Jim Broadbent: Our first Oscar-winner. The Iris star is a bit unique because of what he appeared in. The Curse of The Fatal Death was a two part special made for the Red Nose Charity telethon, and was the only live-action production commissioned between the 8th Doctor TV Movie and the 2005 revival. It is also the only parodic episode to be featured in the DWM archives and was featured on the cover of the magazine twice. In the Hogwarts world, he appears as potions teacher Horace Slughorn.
John Cleese: The comedian who seems to have been in everything, now officially has been in everything. Hilarity ensued with his cameos as Nearly Headless Nick. However, if you blink you might his fleeting appearance as an art gallery visitor in the Tom Baker serial City of Death, an episode that was co-written by the brilliant Douglas Adams and co-stars Richard Dawkins’ wife Lalla Ward as companion Lady Romana. Less than a year after the serial aired, Ward would marry the fourth Doctor himself. The union was brief.
Ellie Darcey-Alden: Quite possibly our youngest contestant on this list, at 15 this budding star has made significant contributions to both series. She appeared as young Lily Potter in Deathly Hallows: Part 2 and as Francesca, one of the children in Victorian Clara’s care in The Snowmen. Fun fact: her brother in that episode was played her real-life brother.
Derek Deadman: Deadman is one of those unknown character actors who has bits and pieces of all over a 40 year career. In the late 70s, he was Stor, the ruthless Sontaran commander who hunts down the sixth doctor, and the world of Hogwarts, he was Tom, the barman and innkeeper of the Leaky Cauldron.
Warwick Davis: Davis seems to be a favourite in fandom, due in no small part to his appearances in Star Wars. But he has played with wizards and aliens. He has actually played two characters in Potter: the first is, obviously, charms Filius Flitwick. He also voiced Griphook the bank teller in Philosopher’s Stone, (in which he was played by Verne Troyer). In the Deathly Hallows films, he physically portrayed the role as well. On the small screen, he stood up to the cybermen as the mayor-in-hiding porridge in Nightmare in Silver. He is most likely as well the smallest actor on this list at 3’6.
Michael Gambon: We have our first knight. This Irish-born took over the role of Albus Dumbledore after the death of Richard Harris in 2002. He simultaneously entered the world of Dickens with his DW appearance, playing Elliot/Kazran Sardick in the very touching episode A Christmas Carol.
Jimmy Gardner: This man is the first on our list, to have a Distinguished Flying Medal for his service in WWII. A well known man in Shakespearian circles, his roles in our two series were relatively brief. He appeared as Idmon in the fourth Doctor Serial Underworld, and helped Harry escape when he played Ernie Prang, the driver of the night bus.
Julian Glover: Gotta love the Glovers. Don’t be surprised if you didn’t notice appearance in Hogwarts; he wasn’t actually on camera. Rather it was his voice that brought life to Aragog, the giant creepy spider. Speaking of creepy, he played Scaroth in the wildly popular City of Death, as well as Richard Lionheart in the first doctor serial The Crusade.
Shirley Henderson: Poor Ms. Henderson, terrible things are always happening to her. Whether it’s being killed and trapped forever in a bathroom as she in Potter and getting stuck in a slab of concrete while trying to ward off an alien. Nevertheless, her appearances as Moaning Myrtle and Ursula were beautiful and sincere.
John Hurt: Our second knight, first actual doctor, and possibly most recent addition to this list. He was the previously undocumented War Doctor, who wreaked confused havoc with Smith and Tennant, and popped in the land of Hogwarts as Mr. Ollivander the mysterious wand maker, who sell Harry his destiny.
Jessica Hynes: Hynes has also portrayed two characters in the DW universe, albeit in a slightly different fashion than some others. She starred ten and Martha as Joan Redfern in Human Nature and The Family of Blood; later briefly appears in The End of Time as Verity Newman, Joan’s great-granddaughter. Her appearance in Potter is also brief, voicing the character of Minister Mafalda Hopkirk.
Toby Jones: Everyone loves a good house elf, and Dobby’s death still ranks as one of the most heart-wrenching moments of the entire series. Jones voiced him beautifully. He showed his sinister side in the delightfully surreal episode Amy’s Choice, his second time working with Matt Smith. They did not play gay lovers this go round.
Helen McCrory: McCrory is really apt playing villains and other sneaky people. She is evil beauty queen and mother to Draco, Narcissa Malfoy, as well Rosanna, the Saturnyian Queen disguised as a vampire in the brilliant The Vampires of Venice.
Bill Nighy: Bill Nighy became a global force in the early 2000s with his appearances in Love Actually and Shaun of The Dead. Did I also mention, Pirates of the Caribbean? Before his appearance as the curator, in what has been called one of the saddest DW episodes in existence, Vincent and the Doctor, he was actually courted to play Nine, but turned it down (the right move in my opinion). In Harry’s World, he is minister of magic Rufus Scrimgeour.
Roger Lloyd Pack: Helen McCrory and David Bradley might have competition for the most sinister appearance on DW. For you see, not only was Pack a bad guy, he was the creator of the ultimate bad guys. He was John Lumic, founder of the cybermen. He also played David Tennant’s father Barty Crouch Sr. in Goblet of Fire.
Jeff Rawle: He might have the coolest character name of anyone on this list: Plantagenet, who appears in the fifth doctor adventure Frontios. As if that weren’t enough, he was also Robert Pattinson’s farther and was heartbroken when he died.
Adrian Rawlins: We have had Harry’s mum, so it is only appropriate that we have his dad as well. That lucky actor is Adrian Rawlins who appeared as ill-fated James Potter. He also appeared as Dr. Ryder, who meets a similar fate in Planet of the Ood. Fun Fact: In 1989, Rawlins starred in a TV movie adaptation of the horror novel The Woman in Black. 23 years later, his on-screen would star in the same role in the feature-film version.
Elizabeth Spriggs: Our second actor, to have played a poster. She is the Fat Lady guarding Griffyndor in Philosopher’s Stone. She is also Tabby, a woman who was controlled by aliens in the seventh doctor adventure Paradise Towers.
Imelda Staunton: Staunton is renowned for her performance as the Christy Clark of Hogwarts, Dolores Umbridge. However, she was also somewhat helpful, yet unrecognizable as the voice of the Interface in one of Karen Gillan’s best performances of the series: The Girl Who Waited.
David Tennant: This one is so obvious it is probably not even worth mentioning. But then again not everyone is a whovian and/or Potter fan. He is our second doctor on this list, and plays arguably everyone’s favourite time-travelling Gallifreyan (at least in the revived series), the tenth incarnation. His is appearance in Potter was more brief, but no less important: the sly Bartholomew Crouch, Junior.
Marnix Van den Broek: We go from the most obvious, to perhaps the most obscure. So obscure that he’s not even an actor, let alone British-born. Van den Broek is a Dutch stuntman (and former ballet dancer) from Axel. His very first movie ever was Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, where he played a werewolf. He has had a smattering of other roles since, most notably as the silence in the sixth season of DW.
Zoe Wanamaker: One of my favourites on the list, simply because of who Wanamaker plays. In Potter, she is Quidditch instructor Madam Hooch. It is in DW however where her talent soars. She is Lady Cassandra, the last “Human” on earth. She plays it perfectly to melancholy hilarity. Fun fact: For any Shakespeare fans out there, Zoe’s father – the American Sam Wanamaker – was the man responsible for the current globe theatre in London. He also came to England because of his alleged communist ties and to escape HUAC. So there’s that.
Mark Williams: Our list comes to an end with a man who is comically brilliant at playing doting, but slightly inept fathers. Mark Williams is of course Arthur Weasley, father to Rupert Grint, the Phelps twins et al. He has another Arthur connection, as he plays dad to Arthur Darvill in season 6 and perhaps has one of the funniest scenes in the show: eating a sandwich while dangling his legs over the edge of the TARDIS as it flies through space.
Bonus: Okay, so I lied slightly. There are two people I want to add to this list. While neither of them have appeared in a DW episode, their connections run strong:
Alfie Enoch: Although he is currently in Shondaland on How To Get Away With Murder, he first came to our attention as Dean Thomas in Potter. His connection comes from him being the son of one William Russell, who played Ian Chesterton, one of the very first companions. You may ask isn’t Enoch a little young to be Russell’s son? Russell fathered Enoch at 63.
Harry Melling: Harry’s favourite cousin can also boast to being part Gallifreyan, as he is the grandson of second doctor Patrick Troughton. Those are some genes.
So there you have it, that’s the end (for now). Did I miss anybody?