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SYFY WIRE Sharknado

The Wildest Cameos in the Sharknado Films: From Stargate Alums to George R.R. Martin

A lot of Sharknadoes mean a lot of celebrities getting chomped.

By Matthew Jackson
David Hasselhoff sits at a booth in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! (2015)

By the time Sharknado 2 rolled around in 2014, the whole world was aware of the over-the-top joy of the original Sharknado film. That meant upping the ante for the sequels, and it also meant that plenty of celebrities of all stripes were willing to get in on the fun. 

RELATED: Sharknado Creators React to Franchise's Impact 10 Years Later

Ever since that first sequel, Sharknado and celebrities have gone together like...well, like sharks and tornadoes. From acting legends to reality TV stars to news anchors and even the occasional scientist, the five sequel films have packed in lots of famous faces. So, as SYFY looks back at the whole saga with a massive marathon on Tuesday, July 18 kicking off at 12 p.m. ET, let's take a look back at our favorites.

Kurt Angle - Sharknado 2: The Second One

Kurt Angle appears in Sharknado 2: The Second One

Near the end of the first Sharknado sequel, WWE legend and real life Olympian Kurt Angle pops up just as the film's climactic triple sharknado disaster is about to strike. He doesn't get a glorious death scene, but he does get to hang out with the film's stars as one of the most jacked fire chiefs in cinema history. 

Al Roker - Sharknado 2-6

Al Roker smiles

When you have an entire movie series based around a made-up, extreme weather phenomenon, you need a real authority to help drive your points home, and who better than America's favorite weatherman. Al Roker first popped up in Sharknado 2 to drop some knowledge about the storms, then stuck around for each and every sequel, no matter how crazy the weather got. 

David Hasselhoff - Sharknado 3- 4


By the third Sharknado film, Ian Ziering's Fin Shepard had basically become an action superhero, complete with chainsaw accessories. So, when it was time to cast someone as his father, the filmmakers had to get someone appropriate. They went with The Hoff, and we can't imagine a better fit. 

Mark Cuban - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

Mark Cuban appears in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! (2015)

It makes sense that the franchise would eventually get some of the "sharks" from Shark Tank in on the action, and while Mark Cuban isn't the only Shark Tank star to appear in a Sharknado, he is the only one to play the President of the United States. That's right, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks got to play the President in a movie about a shark tornado, and it still played better than some actual Presidencies.

Christopher Judge - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

Christopher Judge smiles

Stargate legend Christopher Judge got to put his imposing stature to use as a Secret Service agent in the third Sharknado, and in the process he got one of the best deaths in the series. There's nothing like bragging about how safe you are right before a shark flies into your face.

Lou Ferrigno - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

Lou Ferrigno runs from a shark in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! (2015)

The legendary Hulk himself, Lou Ferrigno, also got to play a Secret Service Agent — Agent Banner, get it? — in the third Sharknado, and even cozied up for a selfie with Fin at the White House. Sure, it's not as flashy as having him Hulk out and destroy the sharknado single-handedly, but it's always nice to see him.

Maria Menounos - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

Maria Menounos is eaten by a shark in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! (2015)

Opening Sharknado 3 with an awards ceremony at the White House made the third film a cameo bonanza from the very start, which meant that everyone's favorite movie pre-show host, Maria Menounos, got in on the fun. Plus, in a sly nod to The West Wing, she gets to play White House staffer "C.J. Sorkin." 

Jerry Springer - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

A shark is about to eat Jerry Springer in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! (2015)

Sometimes you see a Sharknado cameo and think "Oh, of course they made time for this!" The late, legendary talk show host Jerry Springer is one of those people. Appearing as "Mr. White" in Sharknado 3, he's one of the unlucky people who happens to pose with a giant shark on the boardwalk, only to find that shark is still very much alive.

Penn & Teller - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

Magicians Penn Jillette and Teller

Sometimes you get eaten by a shark because you dared to go out and confront the shark. Sometimes, the shark comes in and gets you. That's what happened to the legendary magical duo of Penn & Teller, who were just sitting at a diner trying to help come up with a plan when sharks crashed the place and wiped them out. Now you see them, now you don't.

George R.R. Martin - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

George R.R. Martin smiles

George R.R. Martin is one of those rare household name authors that many fans would recognize on sight, which makes him a perfect candidate for the Sharknado franchise. In Sharknado 3, he pops up just long enough to take in a shark disaster movie at a theater, only to be chomped to pieces by real sharks flying through the screen. How metafictional.

Kathie Lee and Hoda - Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb scare of sharks with broken bottles in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! (2015)

Al Roker's not the only major NBC News personality to make it into the Sharknado universe. Over the years, numerous stars from the Today show and beyond have made their mark, including best wine-drinking buds Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb. The pair first showed up in Sharknado 3, and of course, they mixed their carnivorous weather with a little wine. 

Lloyd Kaufman - Sharknado 4: The 4th Awakens

Actor, producer and director Lloyd Kaufman poses

Make a list of filmmakers who inspired Sharknado and its many sequels, and Lloyd Kaufman is bound to be on it. The legendary Troma Studios schlock filmmaker is one of the reasons movies like this exist, so it makes sense that he finally popped up in one. It took three sequels, but you never forget a Lloyd Kaufman appearance once you know what you're looking for.

Steve Guttenberg - Sharknado 4: The 4th Awakens

Steve Guttenberg smiles

Sometimes a Sharknado cameo is still capable of surprising us, even four films into the saga. That was the case when Police Academy and Cocoon star Steve Guttenberg popped up in the fourth volume, but he wasn't alone. For a rare double cameo, Guttenberg also happened to be the owner of a bright red car called Christine, a treat for Stephen King fans. 

Nichelle Nichols - Sharknado 5: Global Swarming

Nichelle Nichols in Star Trek: The Original Series

When Sharknado needs someone to play an authority figure, the franchise goes two routes: The laugh or the genuine "Oh, wow!" As the U.N. Secretary General in Sharknado 5Star Trek icon and sci-fi trailblazer Nichelle Nichols was definitely the latter.

Tony Hawk - Sharknado 5: Global Swarming

Tony Hawk appears in Sharknado 5: Global Swarming

Look, you don't ever need a good reason to put Tony Hawk in your movie or TV show. Just ask him, be glad he shows up, enjoy the appreciation you get from viewers. It's that simple.

Dolph Lundgren - Sharknado 5: Global Swarming

Dolph Lundgren smiles

Any time is a good time to bring in an action cinema legend like Dolph Lundgren, but his character reveal in Sharknado 5 is especially over-the-top even for this franchise. The iconic star of Rocky IV and The Expendables series pops up as an aged version of Fin's son Gil, setting in motion the time travel plot that would wrap up the franchise.

Neil deGrasse Tyson - The Last Sharknado: It's About Time

Neil deGrasse Tyson smiles

Neil deGrasse Tyson is known for two things: Science education, and poking holes in the scientific logic of movies on Twitter. That means he doesn't necessarily seem like a likely candidate for a Sharknado cameo, but it's nice that he showed up to poke fun at his own reputation for breaking down implausible movies. Plus, thanks to the time travel premise of the whole finale, he even got to play Merlin. 

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