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Production Posse

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The cast of every Christopher Guest movie.note 

"And on a soundstage up in heaven, Jan Hooks is taking a break from shooting a big-budget Candy Sweeney movie and is thinking to herself, 'So THAT’S what I should’ve done. I should’ve been Adam Sandler’s best friend.'"
DListed, "Tina Fey Pays Tribute To Jan Hooks, Burns Rob Schneider While Doing So"

A group of people that, whenever one is involved in a production, others are almost guaranteed to show up at some point.

This used to be a very enforced part of media making. Studios expected artists to specialize into units. An example would be John Ford being specialized in westerns, which meant that large parts of the crew—both in front of and behind the camera—would literally always work together. Another aspect of Hollywood filmmaking which used to enforce this in the past was that studios would often have exclusive contracts with big names spanning several years and movies. For instance, the vast majority of Humphrey Bogart's films after he made it big were for Warner Bros.

John August coined the term "Clique Flick" on his filmmaking podcast Script Notes.

See also Those Two Actors. When each member tends to play the same sort of role every time, they're a Universal-Adaptor Cast. Associated Composer is a subtrope.


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    Multiple Mediums 
  • Voice acting in general is prone to this. While voice actors are generally freelancers, a lot of studios and casting directors tend to have their own little talent pool, though there is some overlap when it comes to popular and in-demand talent. For instance, while all three studios use Los Angeles-based actors, it's easy to distinguish a dub by New Generation Pictures from one by Bang Zoom! Entertainment or PCB Productions.
  • Seth MacFarlane likes to bring in Amanda Seyfried, Giovanni Ribsi, Liam Neeson and others in his shows and films.
  • Actors in Joss Whedon projects have a tendency to reappear in his future projects. There's a handy table on Whedon's page on The Other Wiki showing which of his posse appeared in which of his projects.
    • Crossover between Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel was to be expected, since they exist in the same universe. But after Firefly was cancelled, no fewer than three of the main cast (Nathan Fillion, Adam Baldwin, and Gina Torres) were given bit-parts in Buffy or Angel. Summer Glau was another crossover, but she was on Angel first and then cast on Firefly.
    • Then when Dollhouse hit the air it featured two of them (Alan Tudyk and Summer Glau again) in larger roles, along with ex-Angel actor Amy Acker, ex-Buffy/Angel actor Alexis Denisof, and an ex-Buffy/Angel actor in the lead (Eliza Dushku). Felicia Day had a bit part in both Buffy and Dollhouse; Christina Hendricks had bit parts in both Angel and Firefly. Meanwhile, Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog starred both Nathan Fillion and Felicia Day.
    • And to keep the pattern going, Whedon's feature film The Cabin in the Woods stars Amy Acker (again) and Fran Kranz (from Dollhouse) and features Tom Lenk (from Buffy), while Alexis Denisof (again) and Enver Gjokaj (from Dollhouse) show up in The Avengers. Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye in Avengers) previously had a bit part in Angel, and Chris Hemsworth (Thor in Avengers) was one of the leads in Cabin.
    • Besides Dushku, Glau and Denisof, there are four less-well-known actors (Jonathan Woodward, Jeff Ricketts, Bob Fimiani, Carlos Jacott) who have appeared in three of Whedon's four TV shows.
    • This has now started to carry over to shows featuring former alumni who had worked on Buffy/Angel, as an episode of Grimm produced by David Greenwalt had Amy Acker (again!) as a guest star and will have Alexis Denisof as a recurring character. And Tim Minear's short lived show Drive on FOX starred Nathan Fillion.
    • In the season 1 DVD of Dollhouse, there's a whole behind the scenes look at all the cast and crew who return to work with Joss for the show. He's got a production posse that doesn't just act, but also write, produce, shoot, etc.
    • In one further unusual take on this trope, an episode of Dollhouse was directed by John Cassaday, the artist from Whedon's run on Astonishing X-Men (Whedon).
    • Actors from Joss productions often appear together even without Joss himself being on scene. In Castle, star Nathan Fillion has often appeared opposite Firefly alums, culminating in "Headhunters", where even the network was promoting the Adam Baldwin/Nathan Fillion reunion. Less well-known is the fact that the Season 2 executive producer was Jose Molina... himself a Buffy and Firefly alum.
    • Much Ado About Nothing marks the reunion for so many Joss alums that it's pointless to count them. And the movie was filmed at Joss's house.
      • From Angel, Alexis Denisof and Amy Acker play love interests Benedick and Beatrice (no doubt delighting the fans who wished to see them together on the show).
      • From Buffy, Tom Lenk appears as Verges. Riki Lindhome was a guest on the show before appearing in Much Ado as Conrade. Also, Anthony Head was the original choice to play Leonato.
      • Coming from Firefly are Nathan Fillion as Dogberry and Sean Maher as Don John.
      • Dollhouse had Fran Kranz, who plays Claudio here, and Reed Diamond, who plays Don Pedro.
      • The Avengers had Ashley Johnson and Clark Gregg, who ended up taking the part of Leonato after Head dropped out.
    • The pilot episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. had appearances by J. August Richards (Gunn from Angel) and Ron Glass (Shepherd Book from Firefly); both played the same characters in later episodes of the season. Late in the first season, Amy Acker (YET AGAIN) guest starred as "The Cellist", a person Coulson referred to in The Avengers.
    • Even the single episode of Glee he directed has this, as he worked with Neil Patrick Harris in that one.
  • Toei Company reuses a lot of the same actors for their Tokusatsu productions, though few end up taking more than one starring role. Plenty who have starred in one series, however may appear in a minor role in another or vice versa. This usually is regulated to their two ongoing series, Kamen Rider and Super Sentai. Notable Toei regulars include Hiroshi Miyauchi, Kenji Ohba, Machiko Soga, and Theme Tune vocalist Masato Shimon.
  • Where Tim Burton is, Danny Elfman is sure to follow, and Johnny Depp will probably not be far behind. Softer members of the posse include current significant other (Lisa Marie and Helena Bonham-Carter) and Paul Reubens. Christopher Lee or Christopher Walken (or both) could also feature in there. Burton likes his horror vets. Frequently making appearances have been Jeffrey Jones, Catherine O'Hara, Winona Ryder, Glenn Shadix and Michael Gough (who Burton twice pulled out of retirement). In the early days, Michael Keaton filled the role that Depp fills now, with starring turns in Batman and Beetlejuice. Early Burton films also had a tendency to feature Danny DeVito, Jan Hooks and Jack Nicholson. One CollegeHumor sketch mocked this accordingly:
    Tim Burton: Get me Johnny Depp and my wife on the phone!
    Casting Agent: I can't ever not do that.
    [Casting agent flips open a phone with two giant buttons labeled "Johnny Depp" and "Helena Bonham-Carter"]
    • Helena lampshaded this by posting this picture on her Facebook page.
  • Any given Star Trek TV series is likely to share a significant portion of its crew with any other Star Trek series. Trek directors are especially likely to have started out as Trek actors. They also have a pool of actors that they like to pull from for recurring or one-shot characters, such that there are five actors who have played seven or more different Trek characters: Vaughn Armstrong (12 characters! 13, if you include that Mirror Universe character), Thomas Kopache (7), Jeffrey Combs (9), J.G. Hertzler (8), and Randy Oglesby (7). Joseph Ruskin's only got six, but he's got the distinction of having appeared in five Star Treks.
    • Relatedly, a pizza trophy for the late Majel Barrett, the First Lady of Star Trek, who (unless the 2009 pre-boot gets a Spin-Off of its own) will go down in history as the only person to be involved in all seven versions of the franchise (TOS Nurse Chapel and pilot episode's Number One; TAS Lt. M'ress; TNG & DS9 Lwaxana Troi; TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT, and ST2K9 Computer Voice).
    • Star Trek: The Animated Series had a low budget that led to it using the main actors as guest actors, so James "Scotty" Doohan and the aforementioned Majel Barrett voiced almost every guest character across the series' run.
    • This happened even outside Star Trek. Gargoyles started with Jonathan Frakes and Marina Sirtis as part of the main cast. By the end of the series, minor and recurring characters were voiced by Brent Spiner, Kate Mulgrew, Nichelle Nichols, LeVar Burton, Michael Dorn, Avery Brooks, Colm Meaney, and some others.
      • And it happened again on 24. Former Star Trek: Enterprise showrunner Manny Coto joined their staff for Season 6; then Brannon Braga came onboard for Season 7. That same year they had Trip Tucker, Dr. Phlox and Worf's brother in various one- or two-shot guest roles (hapless dock guard, hapless scientist kidnapped by Tony and Sangalan tyrant General Juma, respectively). At least for Season 8 they branched out to some hotshot pilots...
    • Likewise, Leverage had several episodes directed by Jonathan Frakes, and Star Trek alums in recurring or guest roles include Jeri Ryan, Wil Wheaton, Brent Spiner, Armin Shimerman and John Billingsley.
    • Michael Dorn once tried to make a film via Kickstarter called ''Through The Fire''; basically built upon the idea that fans would like to see Dorn, Marina Sirtis, Nana Visitor and Armin Shimerman in something together.
  • See something made by Sam Raimi?
  • Steven Spielberg has his Associated Composer in John Williams (except for The Color Purple, his segment of Twilight Zone: The Movie, Bridge of Spies, and Ready Player One). He has had the same editor (Michael Kahn) since Close Encounters (ET being an exception), and the same cinematographer (Janusz Kaminski) since Schindler's List.
  • Robert Zemeckis often casts Tom Hanks, who he first worked with on Forrest Gump. Zemeckis has declared that Hanks is his "favorite actor" and that "there hasn't been a single situation where we didn't see eye to eye. Not one." In the olden days, he frequently found parts, however minor, for Marc McClure and Wendie Jo Sperber, who were among the leads of his first professional film I Wanna Hold Your Hand. Yes, they're Marty's brother and sister in Back to the Future. Alan Silvestri has scored every Zemeckis film since Romancing the Stone. He worked with cinematographer Dean Cundey from Romancing the Stone to Death Becomes Her and from there had Don Burgess as his DP from Forrest Gump up to Cast Away, after which he went to performance capture, with Burgess returning for Flight. He's also secured roles (both voice and live-action) for Charles Fleischer, most famously as the title character in Who Framed Roger Rabbit.
  • Toronto-based Nelvana Studio is prone to using the same actors and actresses in its productions, be they live-action or animation. Common talent includes/included Alyson Court, Tara Strong, Sunny Besen-Thrasher, Michael Fantini, Hadley Kay, Jim Henshaw, Billie Richards, and Cree Summer, among many, many others.
  • Voice director Jack Fletcher (known for Disney's early dubs of Studio Ghibli films, the numbered Final Fantasy games, Tenchi Muyo! and more) seems to work frequently with certain actors, such as John DiMaggio, Sherry Lynn, Matt K. Miller, Debi Derryberry, Roger Jackson, and Dwight Schultz. The Animatrix got some attention from fans of Final Fantasy X because it featured the entire main cast from the game (the exceptions being Paula Tiso [Lulu] and Gregg Berger [Jecht]), as well as much of the supporting cast.
  • Otto Preminger had poor working relationships with many of his stars (including Linda Darnell, whom he directed in four films), but he still had a few favorite associates:
    • Laura stars Gene Tierney and Dana Andrews became Preminger's favorite actors to cast at 20th Century Fox. Tierney was Preminger's first choice for Lady Windermere in The Fan, but pregnancy prevented her from taking the part. In the 1960s, Preminger brought them back for a minor role in one film each after their lives had deteriorated, Tierney in Advise & Consent and Andrews in In Harm's Way. Both those last two films also featured Burgess Meredith, who appeared in four other Preminger films.
    • Character actor Gregory Ratoff was a good friend of Preminger from his earliest year at Fox, and appeared in three films directed by Preminger; Preminger also played a small part in one film directed by Ratoff.
    • Doro Merande played small parts in four Preminger films, and was also in several Broadway flops Preminger directed.
    • More closely associated with Preminger than any actor was Saul Bass, who designed the promotional materials and title sequences for most of Preminger's independent productions, including the Broadway plays This is Goggle and Critic's Choice.
    • Max Slater, a friend of Preminger's since his Vienna years, supervised the dialogue on most of Preminger's later films. He was born Maximilian Schulz, but he changed his last name to that of a character he liked in The Moon Is Blue.
    • Ben Hecht did screenplays or rewrites for four Preminger films.
    • The cinematography of Preminger's films of the late 1940s through the 1960s was usually but not invariably by either Leon Shamroy or Sam Leavitt.
  • Directors Zal Batmanglij, Mike Cahill and actress Brit Marling are always working together, from their first film to their most recent work, The OA.
  • David Mamet's posse includes Rebecca Pidgeon (his current wife), Ricky Jay, William H. Macy, Mike Nussbaum, Joe Mantegna, Ed O'Neill and Jonathan Katz.

  • Hayao Miyazaki always taps Joe Hisaishi to do the soundtracks for his movies He also had a tendency in the 80's to cast Sumi Shimamoto for the lead roles in his films, but stopped that later on.
  • Akiyuki Shinbo, the director for all of Studio Shaft's works, has a selection of voice actors that pop up time and time again. Hiroshi Kamiya, Chiwa Saito and Miyuki Sawashiro are the ones most likely to show up.
  • Funimation, while huge, always ALWAYS uses voice actors for the lead roles who had appeared in their previous titles. They do look for new meat, but anime dubbing is so specialized that they really have no choice to cast the same people for the lead roles. Their actors also direct, write, line produce, and sound mix their dubs!
  • Koichi Mashimo frequently works with favorite seiyus Miyu Irino, Aya Hisakawa, Maaya Sakamoto among others. Musically he frequents the group Ali Project, and Yuki Kajiura. Also has his favorite screenwriters. In addition he always goes to the same studio for the art direction and in-betweening and completion work of his anime.
  • Makoto Shinkai has not been involved in any project that does not have the name of composer Tenmon in it. And until Garden Of Words and Someone's Gaze, music by Daisuke Kashiwa.

  • Comic book writer Alan Moore has collaborated with several artists more than once. He worked with:
  • Writer Marv Wolfman has collaborated with artist George Perez on The New Teen Titans, Crisis on Infinite Earths, and History of the DC Universe.
  • Writer Michael Gallagher has frequently collaborated with artist David Manak, most notably on early issues of Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog and the Series/Alf comic. The two also handled Spy vs. Spy installments in MAD for a short time.
  • MAD has several examples:
    • Senior editors Charlie Kadau and Joe Raiola frequently write gags together.
    • Michael Gallagher (the same one who formerly wrote for Sonic the Hedgehog) often writes one-page gags that are illustrated by Tom Bunk.
    • Nearly all of Anthony Barbieri's contributions to the magazine were Monroe and..., which was originally drawn by Bill Wray and then taken over by Tom Fowler.
    • For most of the magazine's history, nearly all of the movie and TV show parodies were illustrated by Mort Drucker or Angelo Torres (plus a handful from Jack Davis), with writing usually handled by Larry Siegel, Lou Silverstone, Dick DeBartolo, Arnie Kogen, or Stan Hart. Over time, newer writers began to take over; as of The New '10s, writing duties usually go to DeBartolo, Kogen, Desmond Devlin, or David Shayne, while Tom Richmond, Hermann Mejia, and Tom Bunk have become the main illustrators.

  • The Rat Pack.note 
  • The Brat Pack.note 
  • The Frat Pack.note 
  • Todd Phillips has cast Vince Vaughn, Will Ferrell, Bryan Callen, Amy Smart, Andy Dick, Matt Walsh, Snoop Dogg, Sean William Scott, Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifanakas, and Dan Finnerty in more than one film. He has also worked with Ed Helms and Ken Jeong more than once but as part of The Hangover trilogy. Brecklyn Mayer would have been part of the alumni if he had starred in The Hangover.
  • Greg Mottola has cast Bill Hader in 3 of his films. He has also cast Kristen Wiig, Seth Rogen, Jo Lo Truglio and Martin Starr in two of his films.
  • The John Ford Stock Company.
  • David Wain frequetly casts Elizabeth Banks, Paul Rudd, Amy Phoehler and The State alumi in his films.
  • Quentin Tarantino writes and directs all his movies. Lawrence Bender, Harvey and Bob Weinstein, Michael Madsen, Harvey Keitel, Uma Thurman, Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, Tim Roth and Christoph Waltz are all regulars. All of his films were edited by the late Sally Menke (it is unknown if Fred Raskin will succeed her as a stable editor from here on out), and from Kill Bill onward he's used Robert Richardson as his cinematographer. Whenever he wants to collaborate with another director, he usually turns to Robert Rodriguez (see below).
  • Robert Rodriguez's regular stable of actors includes Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Antonio Banderas, Danny Trejo, Cheech Marin, Rose McGowan, and Salma Hayek. Spy Kids stars Daryl Sabara and Alexa Vega could very well end up here as well as he's used them each in each of the two Machete films respectively. As for crew, he is the crew. Also, a lot of bit-parts and behind the scenes work involve members of his family, particularly his sons Rebel, Rocket and Racer, credited as consultants for the Spy Kids movies.
  • Christopher Guest movies all involve the same actors. Guest himself, Harry Shearer, Michael McKean, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Parker Posey, Jennifer Coolidge, Fred Willard, Ed Begley Jr., Bob Balaban, Jane Lynch, John Michael Higgins, Jim Piddock, Don Lake, Paul Dooley, and Michael Hitchcock all appeared together in A Mighty Wind and For Your Consideration, all but Shearer and Dooley appeared in Best in Show, all but McKean, Levy, O'Hara, and Dooley appeared in Mascots, tennote  appeared in Waiting for Guffman, and fivenote  appeared in This Is Spın̈al Tap; Paul Benedict was also in the cast for This Is Spın̈al Tap, Waiting for Guffman, and A Mighty Wind. Most of the films also feature behind-the-scenes contributions by the cast members; for example, McKean and Shearer received writing credits for This is Spinal Tap, the musical score for Waiting for Guffman was credited to McKean, Guest, and Shearer, and the score for A Mighty Wind had contributions from Guest, Shearer, Levy, O'Hara, and McKean (the last of whom, along with his wife Annette O'Toole, co-wrote the Oscar-nominated "A Kiss at the End of the Rainbow").
  • Wes Anderson films: Owen and Luke Wilson, Jason Schwartzman, Anjelica Huston, Bill Murray and Indian actor Kumar Pallana, who has been in all of Anderson's films except The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, and Jeff Goldblum have made frequent appearances as well, and Tilda Swinton and Bob Balaban seem to be the most recent initiates. He also usually has Robert Yeoman as cinematographer and Mark Mothersbaugh as the composer though Alexandre Desplat seems to have replaced Mothersbaugh as the composer since Fantastic Mr. Fox.
  • Jason Reitman has put J. K. Simmons in all five of his movies. He also directed Simmons in a live reading of The Empire Strikes Back with Simmons reading the part of Darth Vader.
    • Tully will mark the third film he has directed, that is written by Diablo Cody and second starring Charlize Theron.
    • Elena Kampouris had a small roll in Labor Day and a much larger part in Men, Women, and Children.
    • Jennifer Gardner was in both Juno and Men, Women, and Children.
  • In his early works, John Hughes mainly used Brat Packers, the most recurring being Molly Ringwald and Anthony Michael Hall. After moving on from teen films, you'd be hard pressed to find a John Hughes film without John Candy in it, be it starring role or One-Scene Wonder cameo.
    • Macaulay Culkin is best known for the Hughes written Home Alone, but previously was directed by Hughes in Uncle Buck.
  • Adam Sandler and his Happy Madison Productions house:
    • Expect any permutation of Rob Schneider, David Spade, Chris Rock, Chris Farley, Kevin Nealon, Kevin James, and Nick Swardson (in more recent movies) to be somewhere among the cast members. Of his crew of actors, some are former SNL cast members from the early 1990's.
    • Sandler's recurring actors also have included Steve Buscemi, Peter Dante, and Allen Covert.
    • And with crew members, Sandler has Rupert Gregson-Williams as composer (he's also worked Teddy Castalucci several times), Perry Andelin Blake as production designer, Brooks Arthur as music supervisor and Jack Giarraputo as producer. He also has the Panavision Genesis used on all his projects after working with Dean Semler (one of the creators of the camera) on a pair of projects.
    • Sandler's personal assistant Jonathan Loughran who appears in most of his movies.
    • Sandler is behind Spade's Rules of Engagement, though Sandler has no credited involvement. In a What Could Have Been, a Sandler-executive produced pilot starring Norm MacDonald and Jon Lovitz was also produced.
  • Kevin Smith also tends to keep working with the same people from one movie to another:
    • His original gang included Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Jason Lee, himself, his wife Jennifer Schwalbach, Jason Mewes, Walt Flanagan, Bryan Johnson, Brian O'Halloran and Jeff Anderson, with Joey Lauren Adams and Ethan Suplee to a lesser extent. Most of his movies took place on the same universe, which meant there were some actors playing multiple characters. Additionally, most of his movies featured crew members Scott Mosier (producer) and Dave Klein (director of photography).
    • Years later, Smith formed another crew, with only himself, Jennifer Schwalbach and Jason Mewes remaining from the old days. His more recent collaborators include his daughter Harley Quinn Smith, Ralph Garman, Justin Long, Haley Joel Osment, Génesis Rodríguez, Harley Morenstein, Johnny Depp and his daughter Lily-Rose Depp. Jason Mewes' wife Jordan Monsanto also joined the team as a producer.
  • Say what? Darren Aronofsky is making a movie? Expect Clint Mansell to do the score, Matthew Libatique to be the cinematographer and Mark Margolis to appear in it. Mother is his first without Margolis or Mansell.
  • When Steven Soderbergh and George Clooney got the idea to remake Ocean's Eleven, they went on to form a pretty tight A-List clique themselves. When a movie is directed, or at least produced by the two, it's pretty common to see Clooney, Matt Damon, or Brad Pitt starring opposite Julia Roberts, Angelina Jolie or Cate Blanchett. Don Cheadle, David Strathairn, and Casey Affleck are commonly in supporting roles.
  • The Wachowskis have a stable of behind-the-scenes production folks that they use on every movie. Not so much for actors, but Hugo Weaving has started to become their go-to guy when they need a good actor. Yet, somehow, he was nowhere to be seen in Speed Racer. Huh.
    • For Jupiter Ascending, some of The Wachowskis folks from Cloud Atlas, actors Doona Bae and James D'Arcy, have unspecified roles while Atlas cinematographer John Toll is taking roles as DP once again.
  • Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Joe Cornish, Dylan Moran, Bill Bailey, Julian Barratt, Noel Fielding, Matt Berry, Rich Fulcher, Richard Ayoade and Matthew Holness. They often pop up in each other's various projects.
  • The Coen Brothers are a two-man posse on their own. They claim to divide the writing, directing and producing credits randomly between them for each film (the editing credit goes to an Invented Individual because they were embarrassed at their names appearing so often), and people who've worked for them tend to describe them as The Dividual when it comes to artistic decisions.
  • Many movies directed by Blake Edwards have soundtracks by Henry Mancini, and were edited by Ralph E. Winters. Actors frequently used in his works were his second wife Julie Andrews, Peter Sellers (despite their tumultuous relationship), Graham Stark and Dick Crockett, the latter of whom also worked as his stunt co-ordinator. His main co-writers were Frank and Tom Waldman in the 60s and 70s, and his son Geoffrey Edwards in the 80s. Cinematography duties were handled by various individuals for much of his career, but he settled down to alternating between Harry Stradling Jr. and Dick Bush (the former when he was filming in the US, and the latter in the UK) later on.
  • Monty Python members are known to appear in each others' movies, and in the works of Python-animator-turned-movie director Terry Gilliam. Like Jabberwocky, Erik the Viking, Brazil, Time Bandits, Yellowbeard and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen. This has caused some fans to assume that all of these movies are in fact Python productions, despite the fact that the troupe has considered itself to have been disbanded since the death of member Graham Chapman.
  • Zhang Yimou worked for a long time with acclaimed actress Gong Li. Unfortunately, they broke up, and now he's adopted Ziyi Zhang (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) as a muse instead.
  • John Woo used to work with Chow Yun-fat a lot back in his Hong Kong days. About the only big Heroic Bloodshed movie he made in Hong Kong that didn't feature him was Bullet in the Head.
  • Movies featuring John Cusack will usually feature other Cusacks, as well as Jeremy Piven, a longtime friend.
    • If either Cusack or Tim Robbins is the lead, expect the other to make a cameo at least half the time.
  • In the early George Lucas days, it was rare that his films didn't include Harrison Ford. Ironically, Lucas wanted to avoid this trope and always tried to cast someone else until circumstances forced him to cast Ford. And if he needed a dwarf, he'd go straight to Warwick Davis.
  • Mel Brooks' movies were known for having Dom De Luise, Harvey Korman, Dick Van Patten, Gene Wilder, and Madeline Kahn, among others (for instance, Liam Dunn appeared in at least two of Brooks' movies). In Silent Movie, it goes to another level: Brooks plays a director, while two members of his production posse (Dom De Luise and Marty Feldman) play members of his character's production posse.
  • John Waters regularly featured Divine, Edith Massey, and Mink Stole in many of his works.
  • Nowadays, if there's a movie directed by J. J. Abrams, there's secondarily Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman as writers and Michael Giacchino as the score composer. He also tried giving major roles or cameos to Greg Grunberg and Simon Pegg.
  • Ron Howard often co-produces with Brian Grazer. Also, expect Ron's brother Clint to show up at some point.
  • Any movie directed by Akira Kurosawa in the '50s and '60s could be expected to feature some combination of Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Daisuke Kato and Minoru Chiaki. (Tatsuya Nakadai took Mifune's place in Kurosawa's later films, after Mifune and Kurosawa had a falling out in the mid '60s.) Part of this was the Toho studio system and Japan's relatively small pool of actors after World War II, but after a while Kurosawa started writing parts specifically for Mifune and Shimura.
  • Don't be surprised if you see Michael Biehn or Bill Paxton turn up in a James Cameron movie. Arnold Schwarzenegger is not uncommon to star (at least before he became The Governator). You'll probably find Lance Henriksen or Jenette Goldstein in it and possibly Sigourney Weaver. The score is most likely either done by Brad Fiedel or James Horner. Gale Anne Hurd (Cameron's then-partner) was producer on most of his earlier films.
  • John Carpenter's famous collaboration with Kurt Russell, in Escape from New York, The Thing (1982) and Big Trouble in Little China. He has also repeatedly worked with Adrienne Barbeau (and was also married to her at one point), Keith David and Donald Pleasence. In his early days he often collaborated with Debra Hill as writer/producer, Tommy Lee Wallace as production designer/editor and Nick Castle as a writer (he also played the original Michael Myers) and all his movies from Halloween to Big Trouble in Little China (minus Star Man and Christine) were shot by Dean Cundey and from then he's used Gary B Kibbe on all except for Memories Of An Invisible Man.
  • If a movie is directed by Colin Nutley, Helena Bergström (his wife) almost invariably plays the female lead.
  • Martin Scorsese and his go-to guys Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, Joe Pesci, Frank Vincent, and these days, Leonardo DiCaprio. The editor of all of his movies since Raging Bull is Thelma Schoonmaker. Scorsese was also the last film director to work regularly with Saul Bass.
  • Guy Ritchie and his frequent producer (and now a director himself) Matthew Vaughn often use the same group of actors. Dexter Fletcher and Jason Flemyng have appeared in nearly every film either of them have done.
  • Guillermo del Toro movies tend to have Ron Perlman, Luke Goss, and/or Doug Jones; Hellboy II: The Golden Army featured all three of them in notable roles. The cinematography is usually done by Guillermo Navarro and Marco Beltrami scores most of his films. Also, more times than not his films will feature a cameo by Santiago Segura.
  • Rob Zombie often uses the same actors in many of his films; usually the actors from one film will show up in the next. His wife, Sheri Moon, is in everything he's done.
  • Two well-known ones in Hong Kong cinema:
    • The "Seven Little Fortunes", a subset of which are the "Three Brothers" - Jackie Chan, Creator/Sammo ung (Martial Law), and Yuen Biao, and Corey Yuen (martial arts director for The One, Kiss of the Dragon, Cradle 2 the Grave, Romeo Must Die and others), Yuen Wah and Yuen Qiu (Kung Fu Hustle) which started out as a Chinese opera troupe but gradually moved on to movies in the 70s, essentially defining Hongkong action cinema. (Contrary to popular belief, Yuen Wo Ping [fight director of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, The Matrix, and Kill Bill ] was not a member of the Seven Little Fortunes. Yuen is his real surname, the Seven Little Fortunes just adopted it in honor of their teacher whose surname is Yuen.)
    • They have a Spiritual Successor in a new "Brat Pack" of sorts, a stable of young talents including Edison Chen, Shawn Yue, Stephen Fung, Nicholas Tse, Cecilia Chung, Joey Yung, Gillian Chung and Charlene Choi (the last two even record albums under the name Twins). Sadly these kids are better known nowadays for Edison's scandal, wherein the people repairing his laptop went the extra mile to upload his Porn Stash on the internet - which included nude pics of some of the ladies.
  • Ed Wood and his posse: Dolores Fuller, Tor Johnson, Bela Lugosi, The Amazing Criswell, Bunny Breckinridge, Conrad Brooks, etc.
  • Kenneth Branagh films are likely to feature appearances by BRIAN BLESSED, Richard Briers, Geraldine MacEwan, Michael Maloney, Gerard Horan, Jimmy Yuill, and sometimes Derek Jacobi. Before Branagh and Emma Thompson divorced in 1995, she also played major roles in most of his films. Patrick Doyle usually does the music.
  • Spike Lee has a particularly large one. Members of it include his sister, and are all listed on his page on The Other Wiki. He also reuses crew members, such as cinematographer Ernest Dickerson.
  • The work of the "Black Pack" from the late 80's and mid 90's (Eddie Murphy, Robert Townsend, Arsenio Hall, Paul Mooney and Keenen Ivory Wayans).
  • All of David Cronenberg's films since The Brood (except for The Dead Zone) are scored by Howard Shore and he has worked with cinematographer Peter Suschitzky on all of his films since Dead Ringers (before that, his go to guy was Mark Irwin). Robert Silverman often shows up in a smaller role. Viggo Mortensen and Jeremy Irons are also frequent collaborators with him. Carol Spier started off as art director on three of his early films, then became production designer from The Dead Zone on. His sister Denise has been his costume designer since The Fly (1986).
  • Saturday Night Live alumni tend to work together a lot, usually members of the same cast, however it has been cross-generational as well.
  • Christopher Nolan has a noticeable tendency to cast the same actors in different films. Michael Caine has appeared in his last 5 films. Christian Bale, Cillian Murphy, and Ken Watanabe have also had recurring roles. Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt appear to be the newest members; after Inception, all three have roles in The Dark Knight Rises. In Dunkirk, Tom Hardy and Cillian Murphy appear again. As does Michael Caine in a voice cameo.
    • He does screenwriting with his brother Jonathan, his wife Emma Thomas will usually be producing, Wally Pfister will be doing cinematography (and after Pfister shifting to direction, this post is taken up by Hoyte van Hoytema), Nathan Crowley handles production design, Lee Smith will be editing, either David Julyan or Hans Zimmer will be writing the score, and Chris Corbould will be on special effects.
  • Whenever Tony Scott made a movie, Denzel Washington wouldn't be far behind. See Crimson Tide, Man on Fire, Déjà Vu, The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, and Scott's final film Unstoppable. (All but the first also had music by Harry Gregson-Williams.) Denzel also starred in American Gangster, made by Tony's brother Ridley Scott.
  • Garry Marshall (Pretty Woman, The Princess Diaries) always includes a role for Hector Elizondo.
  • Ever since Gladiator, Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe frequently reunite. In addition to Crowe, Scott has also worked with Costume designer Janty Yates, production designer Arthur Max, editors Pietro Scalia and Doby Dorn and cinematographer John Mathieson (though, post-Prometheus, Scott has been working with Dariusz Wolski on projects like The Counselor and Exodus: Gods and Kings). Common composers for him also include Jerry Goldsmith, Hans Zimmer and Marc Streitenfeld.
  • If Robert Altman's directed a movie, Shelley Duvall, Lily Tomlin and/or Diane Lane can't be too far behind.
  • Ditto Hal Needham (Smokey and the Bandit) and Burt Reynolds, Dom De Luise and/or Jerry Reed.
  • BBS Productions in the late 60s and early 70s. For every film made by the company (with the exception of Film/The Last Picture Show), the producer, director, writer and lead actor jobs were always filled by some combination of Bob Rafelson, Jack Nicholson, Dennis Hopper and Henry Jaglom.
  • Ingmar Bergman frequently worked with the "repertory company" of Max von Sydow, Bibi Andersson, Harriet Andersson, Liv Ullmann, Gunnar Björnstrand and others, and almost always worked with cinematographer Sven Nykvist.
  • Rainer Werner Fassbinder frequently worked with the same actors and production crew. Most of the Neuer Deutscher Film directors did it too.
  • Every Matthew Vaughn movie is produced and possibly co-written by Jane Goldman, probably has Dexter Fletcher and Jason Flemyng, and until X-Men: First Class, a score by Ilan Eshkeri. There's a huge list of regular collaborators (including Guy Ritchie and Brad Pitt) at the other wiki
  • Director James Mangold almost always has Cathy Konrad as producer, Phedon Papamichael as cinematographer and Arianne Phillips as costume designer. But he never used the same composer twice until The Wolverine (which reunites him with Marco Beltrami after 3:10 To Yuma).
  • In the early 1990's, it wasn't uncommon to see a Roger Corman production with Phedon Papamichael, Janusz Kaminski, Mauro Fiore and Wally Pfister all in the camera crew (usually with Papamichael as the main cinematographer). All four have gone on to respectable careers in the cinematography field.
  • Lucky McKee usually seems to have Angela Bettis as one of his actors (and when Bettis made her directorial debut, McKee was the lead actor).
  • Justin Lin almost always has Sung Kang in one of his films (this would likely explain why Kang is the only actor from The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift to appear in future installments).
  • Virtually every movie that David Lean ever directed featured Alec Guinness in a key secondary role (Herbert Pocket in Great Expectations, Fagin in Oliver Twist, Emir Feisal in Lawrence of Arabia and quite a few others), with Guinness only starring in The Bridge on the River Kwai. The two men had a falling out eventually and the next movie Lean made, in which he deliberately did not cast Guinness, was his first critical and financial failure since he began working with Guinness, and so for the rest of Lean's life Guinness always had a role in Lean's films, albeit increasingly smaller ones. The two men never became friends again but Lean still considered Guinness his 'good luck charm.'
    • With five Lean films to his credit, John Mills rivals Guinness as Lean's go-to actor. But Lean's earlier films generally feature many recurring actors: Celia Johnson, Kay Walsh (Mrs. David Lean for a time), Robert Newton, Stanley Holloway, Francis L. Sullivan, Joyce Carrey, Trevor Howard. Ann Todd also did three films with Lean during their brief marriage.
  • Quite a few movies that Tyler Perry directs and/or produces will have himself in a lead role, and also will have Tasha Smith, David Mann and Tamela Mann (the latter two are husband and wife).
  • Before he left the Church of Happyology in 2010, Paul Haggis usually had Michael Pena as one of his actors and Mark Isham as his composer (the latter two are active members).
  • Along with Frank Capra and John Ford, the classic Hollywood director who had the most identifiable stock company was Preston Sturges. Such actors as Eric Blore, Al Bridge, Jimmy Conlin, Robert Grieg, Raymond Washburn, and most famously of all, William Demarest, appeared in most if not all of the movies Sturges directed for Paramount. He also directed Joel McRea in three films and Eddie Bracken in two.
  • Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes movies are an attempt to enforce this trope. Around the time Game of Shadows came out, interviews with the director and the cast had them quoted saying they wanted to keep largely the same cast and crew for each movie in the series.
  • Joe Wright has directed Keira Knightley in 3 out the 6 films he's made (the 2005 adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, Atonement and Anna Karenina) and in a commercial for Chanel's 'Coco Mademoiselle' perfume. Behind the scenes, Dario_Marianelli has done the soundtrack for 4 out of 6 (Pride and Prejudice, The Soloist, Atonement and Anna Karenina); Jacqueline Durran was costume designer on the same 4; Seamus McGarvey was cinematographer for Atonement, The Soloist, Anna Karenina and Pan and Sarah Greenwood was production designer on all six.
  • Joe Dante films all notably have an appearance by actor Dick Miller, with Kevin Mc Carthy appearing in several as well. Jerry Goldsmith scored every single Dante film from 1983 onwards up until his death.
  • Speaking of Jerry Goldsmith, he's had a very fruitful collaboration with director Franklin J. Schaffner (they worked together on 7 films, including The Stripper, Planet of the Apes (1968), Patton, Papillon, Islands In The Stream, The Boysfrom Brazil and Lionheart.) Schaffner has also twice worked with actors Charlton Heston and Maurice Evans(The War Lord; Planet of the Apes (1968)), George C. Scott (Patton; Islands in the Stream) and Laurence Olivier (Nicholas and Alexandra; The Boysfrom Brazil) respectively. He also worked with cinematographer Fred J. Koenekamp and film editor Robert Swink on 5 of his films separately, and Stanley O'Toole helped produced 3 of his films.
    • Jerry Goldsmith has also worked with the talented filmmaker Michael Crichton for whom Goldsmith also had a beautiful collaboration with. They first worked together in Coma and since then has worked together in such films as The Great Train Robbery, Runaway and The 13th Warrior (whom Crichton rejected Graeme Revell's score and chose Goldsmith). Goldsmith also scored Congo which Crichton did not directed but was based on his best-selling novel. One of Goldsmith's last scores was for an adaptation of Crichton's novel, Timeline which saw Goldsmith reunited with his Oscar-winning scored film The Omen (1976) director Richard Donner but his failing health prevented him from finishing the score and instead was sadly replaced by Brian Tyler.
  • Sam Peckinpah had a "stock company" to rival John Ford: Warren Oates, Ben Johnson, James Coburn, Kris Kristofferson, Strother Martin, LQ Jones, RG Armstrong, John Davis Chandler, David Warner, Slim Pickens, Cassie Yates, Aurora Clavell to name the most frequently occurring. He also frequently worked with cinematographer Lucien Ballard and composer Jerry Fielding.
  • David O. Russell has begun to form a production posse so far consisting of Mark Wahlberg, Jennifer Lawrence, Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper and Robert De Niro.
    Michael K.: [on Fidel Castro biopic] A director hasn’t signed on yet, but, bitch, please, a dried turnip could tell you who’s going to direct this. It’s going to be David O. Russell. Bradley Cooper is going to play Fidel Castro, Robert DeNiro is going play the Venezuelan dictator and Marky Mark is going to play JFK.
  • Any time Bob Hope and Bing Crosby would hit the Road, Dorothy Lamour would invariably be along for the ride. Subsequent Bob Hope movies tended to feature Bing Crosby in a cameo, sometimes stealing the girl away from Bob at the last minute. Jerry Colonna appeared in some of the Road to ... movies, as well as some other Bob Hope projects. Lampshaded in the theme from Road to Morocco:
    Where they're going, why we're going, how can we be sure?
    I'll lay you eight to five that we'll meet Dorothy Lamour.
  • Ever since he took up filmmaking, Bobcat Goldthwait's had one of these. He's stated in interviews he mostly casts his friends. This includes With the exception of Robin Williams, most of them are only slightly famous. This includes Geoff Pierson, Tom Kenny, Jill Talley, Toby Huss, author Dan Spencer, Morgan Murphy, Joel Murray, Tony V, Alexie Gilmore and Bryce Johnson among others. Some are people he's worked with when he was acting in movies and television (Murray from One Crazy Summer, Pierson from Unhappily Ever After).
  • Black British director Steve McQueen has directed three films so far. All of them starred Michael Fassbender and were edited by Joe Walker. The cinematographer for all three was Sean Bobbit.
  • Director Jeff Nichols always work with actor Michael Shannon. Also actor Ray McKinnon appears in his last two fims.
  • Director Ryuhei Kitamura has worked together with actors Tak Sakaguchi and Hideo Sakaki in four movies, Versus, Alive, Aragami, and Godzilla Final Wars.
  • Four movies directed by John Landis have a bit part for singer-songwriter Stephen "Charming Guy" Bishop, though Animal House is the only one with any sort of musical contribution by him.
  • Bryan Singer has both cinematographer Newton Thomas Siegel and editor\composer John Ottman (though Ottman was forced out of X-Men for scheduling conflicts), while writers Dan Harris and Michael Dougherty helped him in both the X-Men sequels and Superman Returns.
  • When Bryan Singer left the production of X-Men: The Last Stand he took his posse to Superman Returns, but Brett Ratner brought two of his own collaborators to replace them - cinematographer Dante Spinotti and editor Mark Helfrich - and also actor Ken Leung as a spiked mutant.
  • Excluding a rotating cast of underwear models, David DeCoteau mainly uses former teen and child actors from the 60's and 70's and the occasional actor from some of his earlier works. These include Johnny Whitaker, Kristine DeBell, Jason Faunt, and Eric Roberts.
  • Director Robert Wise and producer Saul Chaplin collaborated on three movie musicals during The '60s. People who worked with the duo on a movie musical two times each include musical director Irwin Kostal, screenwriter Ernest Lehman (who wrote four Wise-directed pictures in total), and actress Julie Andrews (whose association with Kostal dated back to the 1962 Carnegie Hall TV special she did with Carol Burnett).
  • Quite a few Pure Flix Entertainment productions tend to have many of the same personnel; usually co-founder David A.R. White (often alongside wife Andrea Logan White) alongside one of the following: Eric Roberts; Staci Keanan; Kevin Sorbo; Bruce Marchiano (if there is an appearance of Jesus); Sting and/or Robert Miano.
  • Prolific British director Michael Winner had several professional partnerships:
  • Outside of the Carry On movies, recurring actors that appear in it often show up in any media that was produced by Peter Rogers and directed by Gerald Thomas. For example, recurring actor Sid James was one of the biggest stars in a sitcom called Bless This House, and when The Movie of the series was released, it was produced by Peter Rogers and directed by Gerald Thomas and had Carry On regulars Peter Butterworth and Terry Scott as Sid's friend and Sid's new next-door neighbour.
  • The James Bond films had plenty of it. Cast-wise, Desmond Llewelyn played Q alongside every 007 until Brosnan, Louis Maxwell was Moneypenny for 14 movies, and M had just four actors in 23 movies (he's absent from For Your Eyes Only as Bernard Lee had died). In the first 16 movies, only 6 directors worked (and the one who helmed only one movie had been editor in the previous 5; not to mention the editor of that movie cutting two others before helming all 1980s Bonds), Maurice Binder did the credits for all but 2 (and those were by the same guy), Richard Maibaum wrote 13 movies, John Barry orchestrated the music in Dr. No and composed the scores of 11 others, Ken Adam designed 6 movies and Syd Cain 4 (with the latter even returning for GoldenEye), stuntman Bob Simmons - who was famously the first Bond Gun Barrel - was in 9 movies, cameraman/cinematographer Alec Mills was in 9... while GoldenEye marked a paradigm shift - for starters, only Martin Campbell and Sam Mendes did multiple movies - it introduced a roulette of writers (Bruce Feirstein wrote that and the two follow-ups, Neal Purvis and Robert Wade worked in all since The World Is Not Enough, Paul Haggis and John Logan had two credits apiece in the Daniel Craig era), and Binder protége Daniel Kleinman, who did the credits for all but Quantum of Solace. Also, David Arnold wrote the music for all movies between Tomorrow Never Dies and Quantum of Solace.
  • Speaking of Sam Mendes, he has collaborated with composer Thomas Newman in every single film he's directed (except Away We Go) and he has worked with Daniel Craig not only in the James Bond films (Skyfall & Spectre), but they first worked together in Road to Perdition. Mendes had worked with veteran cinematographer Conrad L. Hall in American Beauty & Road to Perdition (which proved to be Hall's last projects). Mendes has also twice worked with Chris Cooper, Allison Janney, John Krasinski, Naomie Harris, Ralph Fiennes, & editor Tariq Anwar (father of Gabrielle Anwar); while he worked with cinematographer Roger Deakins on three of his films.
  • Every James Gunn-directed movie so far features Nathan Fillion, Michael Rooker, and Gregg Henry in the cast, and Tyler Bates composing the score. His brother Sean Gunn also joined this posse, starting with Super.
  • Michael B. Jordan plays a role in every movie Ryan Coogler directs. Behind the camera, Ryan Coogler has also worked with the same composer (Ludwig Göransson) and production designer (Hannah Beachler) on all three of his movies.
  • After Band of Brothers, many of the cast members would write and star in their own movies. Frank John Hughes and Ross McCall are screenwriters themselves - and the films will usually feature Rick Gomez, James Madio, Richard Speight Jr and occasionally Ron Livingston.
  • A variation with Shailene Woodley. While only an actress, she does frequently convince her friends to star in films with her. For example she became good friends with Miles Teller in The Spectacular Now and convinced him to star with her in the Divergent film franchise. She recommended her Divergent co-star Ansel Elgort for the lead in her next film The Fault in Our Stars too.
  • Dito Montiel has collaborated with Channing Tatum on three films - Fighting, The Son of No One and A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints.
  • Sean S. Cunningham, the producer-director most famous for creating Friday the 13th, tended to come back to working with the same crew members pretty often: writer Victor Miller, composer Harry Manfredini, actor Ronn Carroll, and Steve Miner in a variety of roles (director, producer, writer, or a combination of the above, depending on the movie). He also worked a lot with Wes Craven in his younger years.
  • Watch any Clint Eastwood film from the 70s or 80s and there's a good chance Geoffrey Lewis or Sondra Locke (Eastwood's then long-term partner) will show up. Other Eastwood stalwarts from that era included William O'Connell, Dan Vadis, John Quade, Bill McKinney and Woodrow Parfrey. Eastwood appeared in three films with another of his partners, Frances Fisher. Buddy van Horn, Eastwood's stunt double and stunt co-ordinator for forty years, also directed three films which starred Eastwood. More recently, his go-to actors have included Morgan Freeman and Laura Linney. On the other side of the camera, Tom Stern has been cinematographer on almost all of Eastwood's films for the past 15 years, while producer Robert Lorenz and editor Joel Cox are also long-time collaborators.
  • Clint Eastwood as an actor is a part of Sergio Leone and Don Siegel's posses, appearing in three films directed by Leone and five directed by Siegel. Siegel in turn had a cameo role in the Eastwood-directed Play Misty for Me.
  • Paul Verhoeven: In his English language films, expect to see any of Michael Ironside, Sharon Stone, Ronny Cox, Marshall Bell and Dean Norris. Meanwhile in his Dutch films Rutger Hauer was his go-to star for many years. Jeroen Krabbe and Dolf De Vries are also regulars.
  • Derrick J Wyatt and Marty Isenberg occasionally form a very nerdy and pander-heavy duo.
  • David Lynch has a large list of frequent collaborators across his films, most notably lead actors Kyle MacLachlan and Laura Dern as well as Lynch's personal friend Jack Nance. Among his behind-the-scenes collaborators, Angelo Badalamenti has scored virtually all of his projects since Blue Velvet.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Aside from his collaborations with Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg is a member of another posse, which includes Mark Heap, Kevin Eldon, Julia Davis, Amelia Bullmore and Rebecca Front. Chris Morris is often leading charge. They've appeared in a number of works including Big Train, Jam, I'm Alan Partridge, Look Around You, Spaced, Brass Eye and Nighty Night. Don't be surprised to see other familiar British comedy faces, such as Catherine Tate and members of The League of Gentlemen popping up.
  • Practically every Mitchell and Webb production includes Olivia Colman - best known as Sophie from Peep Show, which also stars David Mitchell and Robert Webb - and James Bachman.
  • There is a lot of osmosis between Full House, Step by Step, and Family Matters; they had the same producers and the same lead vocalist for their theme songs.
  • Bob Saget's comedy projects often include his Full House castmates, especially Dave Coulier, Candace Cameron Bure and Jodie Sweetin.
  • Dan Schneider in the Nick Verse (Nickelodeon shows iCarly, Victorious, Drake & Josh and Zoey 101) has certain actors having 3 or 4 different characters in the same shared universe. The main force behind this is that Dan reuses favoured actors as well as finding his future lead stars by casting them in guest or less than starring roles whilst they are younger. For example, Miranda Cosgrove had iCarly built around her through her work as Megan on Drake & Josh, with Nathan Kress being recruited for the show because of a one-shot guest character named Toplin. Jennette McCurdy's character Sam is based on a one episode character she played in Zoey 101. Victoria Justice was in Zoey 101 and iCarly before Victorious, which was built around her when Dan identified her as a future star years earlier when she was on Zoey 101. Also Taran Killam seems to pop up in his works somewhere as well.
    • Want to know who's going to star in Dan Schneider's next series? Just look to the recurring guest stars of the current one.
  • During the 70s Mexican TV producer Roberto Gomez Bolaños (AKA: "Chespirito") used the same pool of actors on all of his shows, usually playing similar characters. This was particularly noticeable on El Chapulín Colorado, which only had one regular character (El Chapulin, played by Bolaños himself) since any other characters in the show where played by actors from his other hit show, El Chavo del ocho (where they played regular characters.) They consisted of some combination of himself, Carlos Villagrán, Ramón Valdez, Florinda Meza, María Antonieta de las Nieves, Edgar Vivar, Ruben Aguirre, and (occasionally) his younger brother Horacio Gomez Bolaños.
  • A Disney Channel Original Movie made these days will likely feature one, or more, or several stars from the channel's original series, and maybe similar directors or writers.
  • Rob Thomas (of Veronica Mars fame) works with Diane Ruggiero, Dan Etheridge and John Enbom on a regular basis, and actors who appeared in one series tend to pop up in his subsequent shows, even for a one-off appearance, Ryan Hansen being the most obvious one, but Adam Scott, Martin Starr, Kristen Bell, Alona Tal, Jason Dohring, Enrico Colantoni, Jane Lynch, Steve Guttenberg and many more have appeared in two or more Rob Thomas shows.
  • Clive Doig's puzzle-based Edutainment shows for The BBC generally featured one or more of Janet Ellis, Sylvester McCoy, Mark Speight, Phillip Fox and Wilf Lunn.
  • The main Horrible Histories cast comprising of Mathew Baynton, Ben Willbond, Jim Howick, Larry Rickard, Simon Farnaby and Martha Howe-Douglas couldn't bear the thought of not working together anymore after that show ended. This led directly to a new TV series, Yonderland, and a film Bill.
  • With any Syfy show, expect to see several guest appearances by actors from other Syfy shows. Sanctuary and Warehouse 13 are the best examples, with the former featuring several Stargate alumni, and the latter featuring guest appearances from almost every other Syfy show that was currently airing at the time.
  • To date, Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford have shared the screen in three different shows, including their stint as co-leads on Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip.
  • American Horror Story changes its cast and plot every season, but each one to date (including the forthcoming Freak Show) has had Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Frances Conroy and Evan Peters in common.
  • Any show created by Donald P. Bellisario (Magnum, P.I., Tales of the Gold Monkey, Airwolf, Quantum Leap, JAG, First Monday, NCIS) will inevitably include members of his family both before and behind the camera.
  • Many Game Show creators:
    • Chuck Barris always used Johnny Jacobs as an announcer from about the early 1970s onward. After Jacobs' death, he was replaced by Tony McClay.
    • Bob Stewart: Bill Cullen will always be involved in some way, either as a host or celebrity guest; if not him, then either Dick Clark, Jack Clark or Geoff Edwards. Bob Cobert was usually the Theme Tune composer. If there are other celebrities involved, expect Markie Post, Joanne Worley, Nipsey Russell, Henry Polic II, Teresa Ganzel, Ilene Graff, Nathan Cook, etc. They were even termed by the Game Show Pilot Light as the Bob Stewart Repertory Company.
    • Mark Goodson: If the show came out in the 70s or early-mid 80s and Gene Wood isn't announcing, then Johnny Olson probably is. Almost always with music composed by Score Productions and/or Edd Kalehoff.
    • Merrill Heatter-Bob Quigley: Always announced by Kenny Williams, except Temptation (no relation to the Sale of the Century knockoff of the 2000s) and The Magnificent Marble Machine. Mort Garson or Stan Worth composes the music, and quite often the host will be Peter Marshall, Wink Martindale, Alex Trebek or Art James.
    • Jack Barry-Dan Enright: Theme Tune usually composed by Hal Hidey, with either Charlie O'Donnell, Johnny Jacobs, or Jay Stewart announcing. Richard S. Kline always served as director (until he and several other B&E staffers defected to form Kline & Friends, which produced Win, Lose or Draw and the 1990-91 version of The Joker's Wild, among others).
  • You'd be hard-pressed to see an improv showcase on television that doesn't include Ryan Stiles, Colin Mochrie, Wayne Brady, Greg Proops, Brad Sherwood, Jeff Davis, and/or Kathy Kinney. In fact, because of their association with a certain popular improv series, the public has affectionally dubbed them, "The Whose Crew."
    • Drew Carey, in particular, used a lot of these performers in many of his projects, both improv and scripted. In the case of the former, all of the above-mentioned performers (and more) have appeared on Improvaganza and Green Screen Show; for the latter, Ryan Stiles and Kathy Kinney were co-stars on The Drew Carey Show, Colin Mochrie was a semi-regular, while Brad Sherwood, Wayne Brady, Greg Proops, and others appeared specifically in the live episodes.
    • And a few years after Drew took over on The Price Is Right, Drew even tapped Sherwood and Davis as substitute announcers after Rich Fields left the show (the show ultimately went with George Gray). In turn, he also had Fields as announcer on Drew Carey's Improv-A-Ganza. And Wayne Brady's announcer on Let's Make a Deal, Jonathan Mangum, has popped up on many of the newer shows, including the new version of Whose Line.
  • Kenny Leon has directed some predominantly-African-American TV adaptations of various plays with Craig Zadan and Neil Meron as producers. Queen Latifah often becomes part of the cast, and also appeared in some movies Zadan and Meron produced under different directors.
  • The CW is basically a network wide example. Examples include:
    • Arrow, which stars Stephen Amell who previously had minor roles on The Vampire Diaries and 90210 as well as Willa Holland who had a recurring role on Gossip Girl and for the first four seasons Katie Cassidy who also had roles on Supernatural and Gossip Girl.
    • Legends of Tomorrow, which consists of actors playing characters from Arrow and the Flash. When Season 2 started, they brought in Maisie Richardson-Sellers from The Originals to play Vixen.
    • When Supergirl moved to the network, they hired Chris Wood from The Vampire Diaries, Containment, and The Carrie Diaries as a series regular.
    • Frequency stars Peyton List who was on The Flash (2014) and 90210.
    • Star Crossed stars Matt Lanter from 90210 and Malese Jow from The Vampire Diaries as well co-star Susan Walters in a recurring role. Jow, Walters and regular Greg Finlay would let book roles on The Flash.

  • In music, EVERY RAP GROUP, CREW OR LABEL EVER. Every solo album one member does, you can almost guarantee the others won't be far behind. This is particularly prevalent in the somewhat self-insular rap groups the Wu-Tang Clan and OFWGKTA.
    • and Young Money. Any album by any member of YMCMB is probably going to have at least another member of the team on it somewhere (and there are several). Being the labels' founding musicians, chances are any YMCMB album will have some sort of vocal involvement from either Birdman or Lil Wayne.
    • GOOD Music, Kanye West's clique and label, does this as well - chances are any album the label releases will have involvement either in production or in vocals from Kanye himself, a hook from The-Dream, and features from any artist on the roster.
      • Kanye himself. Most stuff he's done since the start of his career has involved Common, John Legend, Malik Yusuf, Mos Def and Jay-Z somewhere along the line. He also gained his childhood friends Really Doe and GLC considerable exposure, along with his cousin Tony Williams. These days, if Kanye has a new album out, you can usually expect any (or indeed all) of these artists to be in hot pursuit - anyone mentioned above, Kid Cudi, Raekwon, The-Dream, Jay-Z, anyone not mentioned who is signed to GOOD Music, Talib Kweli, Justin Vernon, Lupe Fiasco, La Roux and Rihanna. You can also always expect his mentor No I.D. to have given some of the tracks a once-over production-wise.
      • And Jay-Z. Almost every Jay-Z album these days will involve production from one or more of Kanye West, Timbaland, Just Blaze or Pharrell. Chances are Kanye may have a verse or two as well. Others who are likely to be involved are Jay's wife Beyoncé, J Cole, Rick Ross, Nas and Rihanna.
  • Brad Paisley largely writes songs with Kelley Lovelace, DuBois, and sometimes Lee Thomas Miller. He also uses members of his road band, The Drama Kings, on most of his albums.
  • George Strait has had many of the same staff since his 1992 soundtrack for Pure Country, including the same batch of session musicians (among them: drummer Eddie Bayers, fiddler Stuart Duncan, steel guitarist Paul Franklin, guitarists Steve Gibson and Brent Mason, pianist John Barlow Jarvis, and bassist Glenn Worf), as well as producer Tony Brown (Except for Cold Beer Conversation, which was produced by Chuck Ainlay instead). Almost all of his albums have also included at least one song written by Dean Dillon, who penned his debut single "Unwound".
  • Garth Brooks has "The G-Men", a set of session musicians who have appeared on all of his albums: Bruce Bouton (steel guitar; also a longtime member of Garth's road band), Mark Casstevens (acoustic guitar), Mike Chapman (bass guitar), Rob Hajacos (fiddle), Chris Leuzinger (electric guitar), Milton Sledge (drums/percussion), and Bobby Wood (keyboards). Most of his albums also feature backing vocals from Bob Bailey and Vicki Hampton, session vocalists who also serve that duty (along with Karyn Rochelle and Trisha Yearwood) in his road band. All of his albums until The Ultimate Hits were produced by Allen Reynolds and engineered by Mark Miller (not the lead singer of Sawyer Brown), who also got promoted to producer after Reynolds retired. In addition, every studio album except for No Fences and Man Against Machine has also featured at least one song written by Kent Blazy; other recurring writers on his albums include Tony Arata, Pat Alger, Stephanie Davis, and Kim Williams. Many members of the G-Men also played on most albums produced by Reynolds in The '90s, such as those by Hal Ketchum, Crystal Gayle, and Kathy Mattea, as well as Ty England's Highways and Dance Halls, which Garth produced (Ty was formerly a guitarist in Garth's road band).
  • Travis Tritt's first four studio albums all had several overlapping musicians, including backing vocalists Dennis Locorriere (of Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show) and Dana McVicker, bassist Mike Brignardello, guitarists Richard Bennett and Wendell Cox, drummer Steve Turner, and percussionist Sam Bacco. Marty Stuart also showed up once an album through the fifth.
  • Except for his little known debut "What Room Was the Holiday In" and a few duets with other artists, Tim McGraw has been produced or co-produced by Byron Gallimore. Also, the vast majority of his music videos were directed by Sherman Hasley until his 2013 death.
  • Whenever Sia makes a music video, you can expect Maddie Ziegler to be in it after appearing in her last three.
  • Kenny Chesney has been produced by Buddy Cannon since 1997, and has included guitarist Kenny Greenberg on nearly every album since the early 2000s. Also, all but three of his music videos since "Young" in 2002 have been directed or co-directed by Shaun Silva.
  • John Conlee has been produced by Bud Logan for literally his entire career. He has also had Brent Rowan as the sole electric guitarist on his album ever since "Friday Night Blues".
  • Toby Keith has included songs written by Scotty Emerick from nearly every album from How Do You Like Me Now?! onward, and several from Bobby Pinson starting with Big Dog Daddy. Also, all but two of his music videos from 1997's "We Were in Love" onward have been directed by Michael Salomon.
  • The vast majority of Keith Urban albums have at least one song written by Monty Powell, and backing vocals from Jerry Flowers (a former member of Urban's pre-fame band The Ranch).
  • A number of videos from Cyndi Lauper's She's So Unusual period featured Lauper alongside wrestler/wrestling manager Captain Lou Albano and her then-boyfriend David Wolff in roles.
  • Iron Maiden's 1980s days had producer Martin Birch and artist Derek Riggs as a given. From 2000s on, while the artist has been inconsistent, South African producer Kevin Shirley is a guaranteed given.
  • All but two of Patty Loveless' albums have her husband Emory Gordy Jr. serving as both bass guitarist and producer. Many of them also had at least one song written by Kostas, and backing vocals from Vince Gill and Mac McAnally.
  • Nearly all of the albums released on Average Joes Entertainment, a label co-owned by Country Rap artist Colt Ford, have been produced by Noah Gordon and Shannon Houchins.
  • Every release by Country Music record label Big Loud Records has been produced by Joey Moi, who co-owns the label. Many of their releases are penned by their roster of songwriters: Craig Wiseman (who co-owns the label), Chris Tompkins, Rodney Clawson, Matt Dragstrem, The Warren Brothers, and Sarah Buxton (who often contributes backing vocals on Big Loud releases as well).


    Video Games 

    Web Original 
  • Alfa Legion videos are sure to have Bruva Alfabusa, Thunder Psyker, Eliphas the Inheritor and Karl the Deranged, and several other Legionnaires appear from time to time as well.
  • Vocaloid composers Hitoshizuku and Yama worked on so many songs together that they have a separate channel dedicated for their crossovers. For added posse, their videos are mostly illustrated by Suzunosuke.
  • Kurt Hugo Schneider's most frequent collaborators are his brother Max, Sam Tsui, and Alyson Stoner.
  • The voice-acting from Digimon Resumido is done by Friendzone Team and some recurring dubbers from the Revengeverse.
  • Following the cancellation of her Disney Channel series Sonny with a Chance and its reboot So Random!, Allisyn Ashley Arm (aka Zora Lancaster) has used cast members from both shows (especially Audrey Whitby and Matthew Scott Montgomery) in her YouTube comedy series, in particular Astrid Clover.
  • Rooster Teeth is getting up there, if they're not already. Between the company's staff and hired actors, it's not hard to find recurring actors - Lindsay Jones, Barbara Dunkelman, Michael Jones, Shannon McCormick, Jen Brown, Lee Eddy, Samantha Ireland - with a few even producing\writing\directing as well (Gray G. Haddock, Kerry Shawcross, Miles Luna).

    Western Animation 

  • Stu is usually accompanied by his girlfriend Jeanine Kasun, as well as writers/historians Mark Evanier, Earl Kress, and Jerry Beck.