SpongeBob SquarePants has been able to snag a lot of famous guest stars over its nine season run, with the long-lasting Nickelodeon show attracting fans of all ages and professions who are willing to take a quick stop in Bikini Bottom for an appearance on the show.
While actors who appear as regulars on the show have gone on to voice tons of other famous cartoon characters and appear in classic TV shows and movies, the show has also attracted lots of stars who were already famous in their own right and wanted to take a turn playing one of the underwater town’s colorful residents. Many of the show’s famous fans have also taken the chance to express their love for the show by voicing one of the cartoon characters, and, while some avowed SpongeBob lovers have yet to make a stop, there’s still a chance they will in the future.
Here is a list of 15 famous stars who you may not realize have already made a stop in Bikini Bottom.
15. John Goodman
John Goodman appeared in one of the more visually uncomfortable episodes of Spongebob, the series’ stop-motion Christmas episode. The megastar appeared as Father Christmas himself in the 2012 episode “It’s a SpongeBob Christmas!” In the episode, Plankton’s newest evil plan, to make the whole town evil so that he can be the only one on Santa’s Nice List and get the Krabby Patty formula as his holiday present, goes horribly awry, as per usual, resulting in Santa fighting against an evil robot SpongeBob.
Goodman has some experience in tense situations, though. Although the actor is best known for his comedic roles, specifically his starring role in Roseanne, which earned him one Golden Globe win and three more nominations, he also has a lot of experience in dramas. He has appeared in films like the Coen brothers’ Barton Fink and The Big Lebowski, and in Argo, 10 Cloverfield Lane, and Inside Llewyn Davis. He is also known for appearances in , Monsters Inc., Community, Alpha House, Trumbo, and more.
14. Adam West and Burt Ward
The original Batman and Robin appeared as the young versions of SpongeBob‘s dynamic duo in a season seven episode, playing the two heroes as youngsters. In the episode, SpongeBob goes back to the past with Mermaid Man’s time machine and accidentally changes what happened, which could lead to the downfall of Mermaid Man and his partner Barnacle Boy.
Although the two heroes are usually voiced by Ernest Borgnine and Tim Conway, respectively, in the flashback they were voiced by Adam West and Burt Ward, best known for playing early versions of Batman and Robin in the ABC series Batman and Batman: The Movie. Aside from starring as the brooding hero, West is also known for his appearances in Family Guy, Geronimo, The Outlaws is Coming, and Robinson Crusoe on Mars. Ward is known for appearing in a number of television films and for his charity work. He also published a book called Boy Wonder: My Life in Tights.
13. Alton Brown
Food Network star (and former Food Network Star judge) Alton Brown made an appearance on SpongeBob in the sixth season premiere, in a role that we’re sure Brown was already pretty familiar with: host of a reality show. The star played the host of House Fancy, which Squidward dreams of winning. Squidward is especially offended when his rival Squilliam appears on the show, so he strives to fancy up his house, but, due to the ill-placed good will of SpongeBob, he ends up with a deconstructed concrete clarinet head. Luckily, Brown still loves it, declaring it the next big thing in fancy houses.
Brown is best known for hosting scientific cooking show Good Eats for fourteen seasons, using his signature mix of chemistry and laughs to entice audiences into creative recipe making. He has also appeared as the host for the American version of Iron Chef as well as Cutthroat Kitchen and its spin-off, Camp Cutthroat Kitchen. Brown has also appeared on Broadway, published a number of cooking books, and hosts his own podcast.
12. Kristen Wiig
Kristen Wiig’s SpongeBob character Madame Hagfish is very reminiscent of many of her Saturday Night Live characters. The extreme eel puts a curse on the Krusty Krab which forces all of the employees to help her in order to get the curse lifted. Her extreme fashion and unique way of speaking are fitting with Wiig’s appearances on the NBC sketch show, where she was known for playing intense characters.
Her willingness to commit to her roles earned her five Emmy nominations for SNL, plus further Emmy noms for The Looney Tunes Show and The Spoils of Babylon. She was also nominated for a Golden Globe for her appearance in Bridesmaids, with the screenplay that she co-wrote with Annie Mumolo earning her an Academy Award nomination. Wiig is also known for her appearance in the recent Ghostbusters remake, where she played uptight scientist Erin Gilbert. Wiig is also known for starring in Zoolander 2, Sausage Party, the How to Train Your Dragon series, The Martian, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Anchorman 2, and Despicable Me 2.
11. Johnny Knoxville
Johnny Knoxville is one of many stars who has appeared on SpongeBob as a character similar to his real-life persona. Knoxville appeared as Johnny Krill, a stunt performer for The Drastic Radicals, an extreme sports team who SpongeBob and Patrick teach about the most extreme sport of all: Jellyfishing.
Outside of his appearance on the season nine episode, Knoxville is best known for starring on the MTV reality series Jackass and its subsequent film spin-offs. Knoxville also has some experience in acting, appearing in Men in Black II, The Dukes of Hazard, The Ringer, Fun Size, Movie 43, Saturday Night Live, Family Guy, Ridiculousness, Drunk History, and Maron. More recently, he voiced Leonardo in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (although he did not voice the character in the 2016 sequel) and appeared in Elvis & Nixon, Skiptrace, and Above Suspicion. He is set to appear in another Jackass film in the future.
10. Amy Poehler
Comedian Amy Poehler played a very creepy role on SpongeBob, starring as Granny Stew in a season four episode. Granny Stew is a bit too obsessed with snails, so she takes Gary into her home overfeeds him, nearly killing him, like the many other dead snails that the smart creature finds in her closet. Luckily, Poehler doesn’t usually play roles that creepy.
The actress, who got her start appearing on Saturday Night Live for seven years, has appeared in a number of films like Mean Girls, Sisters, Baby Mama, Inside Out, Spring Breakdown, Monsters vs. Aliens, and Horton Hears a Who. She also starred on the NBC series Parks and Recreation, which earned her two Golden Globe nominations and one win. Poehler also recently won an Emmy for co-hosting Saturday Night Live with Tina Fey and has 17 other Emmy nominations under her belt. Other illustrious nominations include a Grammy Award nomination for best spoken word album, for audiobook, Yes Please.
9. John Rhys-Davies
John Rhys-Davies has experience playing both heroes and villains, but on SpongeBob he went the bad route, Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy’s arch-nemesis Man Ray. Despite SpongeBob and Patrick’s attempts to make Man Ray good, he still is always around to try and destroy Bikini Bottoms’ heroes—although, since 2007, that destruction has come without Rhys-Davies, as the character has been voiced by Bob Joles from 2008 to now.
Rhys-Davies has kept himself busy throughout his career, though. Rhys-Davies is best known for his appearances in big franchises, appearing as Gimli in The Lord of the Rings movies and Sallah in the Indiana Jones movies. The actor was nominated for a Primetime Emmy for his 1981 appearance in Shogun and has also appeared in the 1993 remake of The Untouchables. Other works include Sliders, Robin of Sherwood, Justice League, Aladdin and the King of Thieves, The Living Daylights, Freelancer, The Princess Diaries 2, The Shannara Chronicles, and Gargoyles.
8. Andy Samberg
Comedian Andy Samberg appeared on SpongeBob’s eighth season as Colonel Carper, who vies with Mr. Krabs to be SpongeBob and Patrick’s band manager. The role is fitting for Sandberg, who is well known for being a member of The Lonely Island, a three person band that has filmed a number of songs for Saturday Night Live and earned an Academy Award nomination for “Everything is Awesome,” featuring Tegan and Sara, from The Lego Movie.
Outside of The Lonely Island, Samberg was also a cast member on Saturday Night Live for seven years and has appeared in films like Hot Rod, That’s My Boy, Celeste and Jesse Forever, I Love You, Man, Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping, Storks, and the Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Hotel Transylvania series. Samberg is currently starring as Jake Peralta on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, a role which has earned him a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Television Series.
7. Patton Oswalt
Patton Oswalt played one of the few characters who can make SpongeBob feel uneasy about his fry cook abilities. He appeared in a season five episode as Jim, the original Krusty Krab fry cook who had the job before the sponge stepped up to the plate. Although SpongeBob doubts how he can stack up to Jim, Mr. Krabs assures him that he will always have at least one thing over the suave fish: he’s cheap.
Oswalt is known for his appearances in a number of comedies, as well as his stand-up work, writing, and occasional guest starring roles on more dramatic shows. The actor has notably appeared on The King of Queens, Dollhouse, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., The United States of Tara, The Goldbergs, and BoJack Horseman. His film work includes Ratatouille, Young Adult and The Secret Life of Mitty. Oswalt won an Emmy for his stand-up special Patton Oswalt: Talking for Clapping and has three Grammy nominations for his comedy albums.
6. Gene Simmons
Kiss frontman Gene Simmons seems like an odd person to guest star on a children’s TV show, but the guitarist and singer made an appearance in a season five episode, playing a monster who gets woken up from a 79 year sleep by a nosy SpongeBob and Patrick. The two sell the monster hundreds of Plankton’s chum burgers, but end up having to give up all the money, greatly disappointing Mr. Krabs.
Simmons was a part of Kiss for many years, guiding the band to the height of their popularity in the 1970s and 80s. The band has sold more than 100 million records worldwide and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014. Simmons has also acted before, appearing in TV movie Kiss Meets the Phantom of Rock, Trick or Treat, Runaway, Extract, and Scooby-Doo! And Kiss: Rock and Roll Mystery. He has also appeared as himself on TV shows like Family Guy, Castle, Welcome to Sweden, Angie Tribeca,, and Scorpion.
5. Mark Hamill
Hamill is best known for his role as diehard good guy Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars films, but on SpongeBob, he voiced one of the series’ biggest super villains. The actor appeared as The Moth, nemesis to Bikini Bottom superheroes Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy. Although our favorite heroes are able to capture The Moth with the help of SpongeBob, he breaks free and hasn’t been seen since, leaving room for Hamill to possibly make another appearance on the series.
The actor is a bit busy, though, reprising his role as Skywalker in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and other further sequels in the large film universe. Outside of the famous Disney films, Hamill has also appeared in both the original and new versions of The Flash, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, and Airborne and has lent his voice to numerous superhero cartoon series, the Scooby Doo series and films, Johnny Bravo, Codename: Kids Next Door, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Robot Chicken, and more.
4. Ian McShane
Ian McShane is known for his gruff persona and intense roles, which the actor was somehow able to bring to his voiceover part on SpongeBob. McShane played Gordon, the leader of a group of Vikings who teaches SpongeBob about his people’s history and ends up getting rescued by the porous fry cook. McShane has won a Golden Globe for his starring role on Deadwood, for which he was also nominated for an Emmy. He’s also earned a Golden Globe nomination for The Pillars of the Earth.
Outside of that, McShane is known for starring in Lovejoy, Kings, Kung Fu Panda, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Case 39, Nine Lives, 44 Inch Chest, and Hot Rod. More recently, McShane made an appearance as Brother Ray on Game of Thrones. He is set to appear in the starring role of Mr. Wednesday in Starz’s adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods, which will premiere in 2017.
3. Johnny Depp
Superstar Johnny Depp appeared in a season six SpongeBob episode as surfing legend Jack Kahuna Laguna, who is about as ridiculous as his name sounds. JKL, as his friends call him, is tasked with teaching SpongeBob and his friends some totally radical surfing moves so that they can surf the waves back to Bikini Bottom after they get lost. Depp is well known for playing odd roles like JKL.
He has been nominated for three Academy Awards for his appearances in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Finding Neverland, and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, and has also picked up a Golden Globe win for Sweeney Todd and nominations for The Tourist, Alice in Wonderland, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, and The Curse of the Black Pearl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Finding Neverland, Ed Wood, Benny & Joon, and Edward Scissorhands.
2. David Bowie
The late rock star appeared in the special season five episode “Atlantis SquarePantis”, in which SpongeBob and the gang travel to the mystical land of Atlantis. David Bowie voiced the ruler of Atlantis, Lord Royal Highness, who gets a little bit testy with SpongeBob after he accidentally breaks the world’s oldest bubble. His Lord Royal Highness eventually gets over it and sends SpongeBob and his friends away to have more adventures in Bikini Bottom, while Bowie went back to creating beautiful music.
The musician has racked up seven Grammy nominations and an additional two wins: a 1985 win for best short form music video for “Jazzin, For Blue Jean” and a 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award. The singer also has some experience in acting outside of the SpongeBob universe. He has appeared in Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me and Twin Peaks: The Missing Pieces, as well as The Man Who Fell To Earth, Labyrinth, August, The Prestige, The Hunger, and Zoolander.
1. Half of Hollywood
SpongeBob‘s 10 year anniversary special “Truth or Square” was a blow-out event for Nickelodeon, and the network spared no expense or effort in gathering up every single famous SpongeBob fan available to appear. The special episode featured appearances from Will Ferrell, Tina Fey, LeBron James, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, Ricky Gervais, Rosario Dawson, Craig Ferguson, P!nk, and Robin Williams. The actors, excluding Gervais, all played live-action versions of themselves, with the British comedian and former The Office star providing the voice of the narrator.
Most of the actors who agreed to appear have previously espoused their love for the show and its signature characters, making the episode a dream come true for viewers and actors alike. Cee Lo Green also recorded a special version of the theme song, set to a stop-motion version of the credits, for the episode. Like the entirety of SpongeBob‘s run, the episode was a heartfelt, funny, and star-studded affair that truly showed off what the long-running cartoon series can do.