Zero Dark Thirty is the engrossing saga of the decade-long hunt for Osama bin Laden. Or, if you’re a television viewer, the engrossing saga of a bunch of TV actors putting on suits or fatigues in the most Oscar-buzzy game of “Hey! It’s that guy!” ever played. Other than star Jessica Chastain, who plays the dogged CIA analyst Maya, pretty much everyone else is most recognizable from their TV work.
James Gandolfini: In ZDT, he’s the CIA director, closely modeled on Leon Panetta.
But you know him as Tony Soprano. Obviously.
Kyle Chandler: In ZDT, he’s Joseph Bradley, the CIA station chief in Islamabad.
But you know him as Coach Eric Taylor, world’s best human, from Friday Night Lights.
Chris Pratt: In ZDT, he’s Justin, one of the members of DEVGRU (a.k.a. SEAL Team Six) who raids bin Laden’s compound.
But you know him as Andy on Parks and Recreation.
Jason Clarke: In ZDT, he’s Dan, the CIA officer who tries to teach Maya the ropes. The torture ropes.
But you know him as Tommy Caffee from Brotherhood or Jarek Wysocki from The Chicago Code. (Or more likely, from commercials for The Chicago Code, since no one watched that show.)
Harold Perrineau: In ZDT, he’s Jack, one of the CIA analysts in the field alongside Maya.
But you know him as Augustus Hill from Oz, Michael on Lost (“Waaaalt!”), or Damon from Sons of Anarchy.
Mark Duplass: In ZDT, he’s Steve, another analyst back at CIA headquarters in Langley.
But you know him as Pete on The League.
John Barrowman: In ZDT, he’s Jeremy, the CIA director’s chief of staff.
But you know him as Captain Jack Harkness on Torchwood and Doctor Who.
Jennifer Ehle: In ZDT, she’s Jessica, Maya’s colleague, confidante, and seemingly her own friend.
But you know her as Anna, the ghost ex-wife on A Gifted Man. (Again, probably just from the commercials. That show was not a hit.)
Fredric Lehne: In ZDT, he’s the Wolf, a Muslim CIA official.
But you know him as one of the guards on this season of American Horror Story, Azazel on Supernatural, or maybe as the marshal who arrested Kate on Lost.
Stephen Dillane: In ZDT, he’s the National Security adviser.
But you know him as Stannis Baratheon on Game of Thrones.
Mike Colter: In ZDT, he’s a member of SEAL Team Six.
But you know him as Lemond Bishop, drug kingpin with the mostest on The Good Wife. Or maybe as Malcolm on Ringer, if you’re one of the dozens of people who stuck with that show.
Taylor Kinney: In ZDT, he’s another SEAL.
But you know him as Kelly on Chicago Fire or Mason on The Vampire Diaries.