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Premiere January 23, 1977
Finale January 30, 1977
Creator Alex Haley (novel),
William Blinn (adapted for TV)
Network ABC
Style 60/120-minute historic drama
Company David L. Wolper Productions,
Warner Bros. Television
Episodes 8
Origin USA
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Roots is a historic drama that aired on ABC.



Actor Character
Billed Cast
Maya Angelou Nyo Boto
Ji-Tu Cumbuka Wrestler
Moses Gunn Kintango
Thalmus Rasulala Omoro (Kunta's father)
Harry Rhodes Brima Cesay
William Watson Gardner
Ren Woods Fanta
LeVar Burton Kunta Kinte/Toby Reynolds
Edward Asner Capt. Thomas Davies
O.J. Simpson Kadi Touray
Ralph Waite Slater
Louis Gossett, Jr. Fiddler
Robert Reed Dr. William Reynolds
Lorne Greene John Reynolds
Lynda Day George Mrs. Reynolds
Vic Morrow Ames
Paul Shenar John Carrington
John Amos Toby
Madge Sinclair Bell
Gary Collins Grill
Lee de Broux Trumbull
Tanya Boyd Genelva
Beverly Todd Fanta
Thayer David Harlan
Raymond St. Jacques The Drummer
Sandy Duncan Missy Anne Reynolds
Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs Noah
John Schuck Ordell
Leslie Uggams Kizzy
Roxie Roker Melissa
Elma Jackson Mama Ada
Carolyn Jones Mrs. Moore
Macdonald Carey Squire James
Scatman Crothers Mingo
Olivia Cole Mathilda
George Hamilton Stephen Bennett
Ian McShane Sir Eric Russell
Lillian Randolph Sister Sara
Richard Roundtree Sam Bennett
Ben Vereen 'Chicken' George Moore
Wally Taylor Reverend
Davis Roberts Leonard
Lloyd Bridges Evan Brent
Georg Stanford Brown Tom Harvey
Brad Davis Ol' George Johnson
Hilly Hicks Lewis
Doug McClure Jemmy Brent
Lynne Moody Irene Harvey
Lane Binkley Martha Johnson
Richard McKenzie Sam Harvey
Austin Stoker Virgil
Sally Kemp Lila Harvey
Burl Ives Sen. Arthur Johnson
John Quade Sheriff Biggs
Charles Cyphers Drake
Todd Bridges Bud
Supporting/Recurring Cast
Rebecca Bess Girl on Ship
Grand L. Bush Captured runaway slave
Henry Butts Sitafa
Brooks Clift McAlmon
Betty Cole Sassy Woman
Chuck Connors Tom Moore
Pat Corley Referee
Fred Covington Auctioneer
Yvonne De Carlo Slave Owner's Wife
Joe Dorsey Calvert
Kermit Echols Vilars
Richard Farnsworth Slave catcher
Bill Gribble Seaman Grimes
Stan Haze Field singer
Wayne Heffley Telegrapher
Cindy Henderson Bess
Maurice Hunt The doctor
Brion James Slaver
John Dennis Johnston Man at cockfight
Lee Kessler Miss Constable
Yaphet Kotto
Ronnie Leggett Kalila
Rachel Longaker Caroline
Macon McCalman Poston
Robert Phalen Rufus Jackson
Hank Rolike John
Fred D. Scott
Roosevelt Smith James
Ernest Thomas Kailuba
Cicely Tyson Binta (Kunta's mother)
Alex Haley Himself (uncredited)
Sonny Shroyer Seaman Thompson (uncredited)


# Title Airdate
1 Episode 1 January 23, 1977
2 Episode 2 January 24, 1977
3 Episode 3 January 25, 1977
4 Episode 4 January 26, 1977
5 Episode 5 January 27, 1977
6 Episode 6 January 28, 1977
7 Episode 7 January 29, 1977
8 Episode 8 January 30, 1977


DVD Releases

Title Release Date #
Complete Series
25th Anniversary Edition January 15, 2002 3

30th Anniversary Edition May 22, 2007 7