‘The Rockford Files’ Turns 50, Do You Remember All These Guest Stars?

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Always in demand by women, if not clients, the (falsely imprisoned) ex-con turned detective Jim Rockford might have famously charged “$200 a day, plus expenses,” but he earned his money, trading insults for injuries from the bad guys. Never above helping clients down on their luck (he lived in a house trailer on the beach, after all), “Jimbo” patiently solved cases with wit and style from 1974 to 1980. But as any fan of the show knows, you watched because of ex-Maverick star James Garner, who brought a whole new level of laid-back cool to the gumshoe genre.

The Rockford Files, like many TV Westerns before it, also brought a host of special guest stars some veteran actors and some just starting out. For the 50th anniversary of this beloved crime drama, we cover some of the most notable actors who shared the screen with Garner & gang.

Tom Atkins 

S1.E3 “The Countess” (1974) – Alex Diel

S1.E15 “Sleight of Hand” (1975) – Alex Diel

S1.E20 “The Four Pound Brick” (1975) – Alex Diel

S2.E7 “The Real Easy Red Dog” (1975) – Alex Diel

S2.E16 “A Portrait of Elizabeth” (1976) – Alex Diel

S2.E20 “Where’s Houston?” (1976) – Alex Diel

S4.E3 “The Battle of Canoga Park” (1977) – Lt. Thomas Diehl

S4.E6 Requiem for a Funny Box” (1977) – Alex Diel

Lauren Bacall

THE ROCKFORD FILES, Lauren Bacall in 'Lions, Tigers, Monkeys and Dogs', (Season 6, episode 602, aired October 12, 1979), 1974-1980.

NBC/Everett Collection

S6.E2 “Lions, Tigers, Monkeys and Dogs” (1979) – Kendall Warren

Ned Beatty

S1.E12 Profit and Loss, Part 1: Profit (1974) – Leon Fielder

S1.E13 Profit and Loss, Part 2: Loss (1974) – Leon Fielder

S3.E9 Return to the 38th Parallel (1976) – Al Brennan

Tara Buckman

S4.E12 The Queen of Peru (1977) – Girl

Jackie Cooper

S1.E17 Claire” (1975) – Capt. Highland

S4.E21 “The House on Willis Avenue” (1978) – Garth McGregor

Linda Evans

THE ROCKFORD FILES -- "The Farnsworth Stratagem" Episode 202 -- Pictured: (l-r) Linda Evans as Audrey Wyatt, James Garner as Jim Rockford --

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S1.E17 “Claire” (1975) – Claire Prescott

S2.E2 “The Farnsworth Stratagem” (1975) – Audrey Wyatt

William Daniels

S2.E19 “The Italian Bird Fiasco” (1976) – Thomas Caine

S3.E7 So Help Me God (1976) – Gary Bevins

Louis Gossett Jr.

S2.E21 “Foul on the First Play” (1976) – Marcus Aurelius ‘Gabby’ Hayes

S3.E17 “Just Another Polish Wedding” (1977) – Marcus Aurelius ‘Gabby’ Hayes

Larry Hagman

S4.E11 “Forced Retirement” (1977) – Richard Lessing

Sid Haig

S1.E11 “Caledonia – It’s Worth a Fortune!” (1974) – B.J.

Ed Harris

S5.E5  “Kill the Messenger” (1978) – Rudy Kempner

Kathryn Harrold

THE ROCKFORD FILES -- "Black Mirror: Part 1 & 2" Episode 9 & 10 -- Pictured: (l-r) Kathryn Harrold as Megan K. Dougherty, James Garner as Jim Rockford --

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S5.E9 “Black Mirror” (1978) – Megan Dougherty

S6.E5 “Love Is the Word” (1979) – Megan Dougherty

Isaac Hayes

THE ROCKFORD FILES -- "The Hammer of C Block" Episode 14 -- Aired 01/09/1976 -- Pictured: (l-r) Isaac Hayes as Gandolph Finch, James Garner as Jim Rockford

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S2.E14 “The Hammer of C Block” (1976) – Gandolph Fitch

S3.E17 “Just Another Polish Wedding” (1977) – Gandolph Fitch

S4.E4 “Second Chance” (1977) – Gandolph Fitch

Howard Hesseman

S4.E21 “The House on Willis Avenue” (1978) – Al Steever

Kathy Hilton (as Kathie Richards)

S4.E20  “The Prisoner of Rosemont Hall” (1978) – Judy

Richard Moll 

S5.E7 Three Day Affair with a Thirty Day Escrow” (1978) – Ludes

Lara Parker

S1.E15 “Sleight of Hand” (1975) – Diana Lewis

Stefanie Powers

S2.E7 “The Real Easy Red Dog” (1975) – Christine Dusseau

Rita Moreno

THE ROCKFORD FILES, from left: Rita Moreno, Noah Beery in 'Rosendahl and Gilda Stern Are Dead' (Season 5, Episode 2, aired September 29, 1978), 1974-80.

Everett Collection

S4.E16 The Paper Palace (1978) – Rita Capkovic

S5.E2 “Rosendahl and Gilda Stern Are Dead” (1978) – Rita Capkovic

S6.E8 “No Fault Affair” (1979) – Rita Capkovic

Bill Mumy

THE ROCKFORD FILES -- "Aura Lee, Farewell" Episode 114 -- Pictured: (l-r) James Garner as Jim Rockford, Bill Mumy as Trask --

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S1.E10 “Backlash of the Hunter” (1974) – Nick Butler

S1.E14 “Aura Lee, Farewell” (1975) – Trask

Pernell Roberts

S4.E21 “The House on Willis Avenue” (1978) – B.J. Anderson

John Saxon

S2.E16 “A Portrait of Elizabeth” (1976) – Dave Delaroux

Tom Selleck

ROCKFORD FILES, James Garner, Tom Selleck, 1974-80

Everett Collection

S5.E4 “White on White and Nearly Perfect” (1978) – Lance White

S6.E6 “Nice Guys Finish Dead” (1979) – Lance White

Suzanne Somers

S1.E7 “The Big Ripoff” (1974) – Ginny Nelson

Rick Springfield

S4.E17 “Dwarf in a Helium Hat” (1978) – Keith Stuart

Joan Van Ark

THE ROCKFORD FILES -- "Resurrection in Black and White" Episode 8 -- Pictured: (l-r) Joan Van Ark as Susan Alexander --

Larry Barbier/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

S1.E8 “Find Me If You Can” (1974) – Barbara Kelbaker

S2.E8 “Resurrection in Black & White” (1975) – Susan Alexander

S3.E12 There’s One in Every Port” (1977) – Christina Marks

Abe Vigoda

S1.E1 “The Kirkoff Case” (1974) – Al Dancer

S5.E2 “Rosendahl and Gilda Stern Are Dead” (1978) – Phil ‘The Dancer’ Gabriel

Lindsay Wagner

ROCKFORD FILES, James Garner, Lindsay Wagner, 1974-1980

Everett Collection

S1.E0 “Backlash of the Hunter” (1974) – Sara Butler

S1.E14 “Aura Lee, Farewell” (1975) – Sara Butler

Dionne Warwick

ROCKFORD FILES, "Second Chance" (Season 4), James Garner, Dionne Warwick, 1974-80

Everett Collection

S4.E4 Second Chance” (1977) – Theda Moran / Theda Best

Of course, this is just a taste of all the notable stars who appeared on the show. If you want to try and catch more you can stream The Rockford Files on Roku.

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