"The Simpsons" isn't just the most popular animated series of all time — it's also the longest running scripted series in American TV history. Over the years, countless A-listers have lent their vocal talents to the cartoon. In honor of its 30th anniversary on Dec. 17, 2019, Wonderwall.com is taking a look back at some of the bold-faced names who've had speaking (and even singing) roles on this iconic program…
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Even though Meryl Streep is an Academy Award-winning actress, she couldn't pass up the opportunity to voice a character on "The Simpsons." Her turn came in 1994 when she played Jessica Lovejoy, the object of Bart Simpson's affections on the episode "Bart's Girlfriend."
On the first-ever hour-long episode of "The Simpsons," Taraji P. Henson voiced Praline, the ex-wife of a con artist who managed to bankrupt Monty Burns. The episode, which was aptly titled "The Great Phatsby," aired on Jan. 15, 2017.
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Season 27 of "The Simpsons" rode the popularity wave of HBO's "Girls" by featuring Lena Dunham, Jemima Kirke, Allison Williams, Zosia Mamet and Adam Driver (not pictured) on the premiere episode, "Every Man's Dream."
Gal Gadot voiced herself on the celeb-stuffed Season 30 premiere episode of "The Simpsons," which first aired in 2018. The episode centers around a faith-based film being made about the Simpson family. The "Wonder Woman" star auditioned for the role of Lisa, while Emily Deschanel (voicing herself) auditioned to play Marge and Jonathan Groff (also voicing himself) played Bart.
Martin Short brought his signature comedy to the 29th season of "The Simpsons" when he played theatrical director Guthrie Frenel on the episode "Springfield Splendor." In this one, Marge and Lisa have creative differences about turning their graphic novel, "Sad Girl," into a musical.
George Takei paid homage to his Japanese ancestry when he voiced the role of Akira on "The Simpsons" on the episode "One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish" in 1991. Fans may remember this as the episode where Homer Simpson ate a potentially deadly blowfish.
On the episode "Teenage Mutant Milk-Caused Hurdles," sexy Sofia Vergara gave vocal life to Ms. Berrera, a new teacher in town who manages to steal Bart Simpson's heart from the first "hola."
In 2017, "Game of Thrones" star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau appeared as himself on "The Simpsons" on the episode titled "The Serfsons," in which Homer has to undertake a dangerous mission to save the life of Marge's mother.
Bob Odenkirk channeled his "Breaking Bad" and "Better Call Saul" alter ego — slimy criminal defense lawyer Saul Goodman — to voice a mob lawyer on an October 2019 episode of "The Simpsons" titled "The Fat Blue Line." The episode also featured Jason Momoa as a version of himself.
One of the biggest celebrities to ever lend his voice to "The Simpsons" was the late King of Pop himself, Michael Jackson. Credited under the pseudonym "John Jay Smith," Michael voiced the character Leon Kompowsky in the episode "Stark Raving Dad." Although it might be hard for fans to believe, Michael did not sing the famous birthday song to Lisa in the show. It was, in fact, a singing double by the name of Kipp Lennon.
Elizabeth Taylor made jaws drop in 1992 when she appeared as the voice of the youngest Simpson, baby Maggie, in the episode "Lisa's First Word." The iconic film star only uttered one word on the entire episode, giving usually silent Maggie the chance to say "Daddy." Elizabeth returned to "The Simpsons" in 1993, this time as herself on the episode "Krusty Gets Kancelled."
Awkwafina voiced two different characters on "The Simpsons" in 2019. First, she played sixth grader Carmen, a member of the feminist group Bossy Riot, on the episode "Bart vs. Itchy & Scratchy." (The other two members of her squad were voiced by "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" star Chelsea Peretti and "Nailed It!" host Nicole Byer.) Then she portrayed Dr. Chang, who works in a Canadian emergency room, on the episode "D'oh Canada."
In 1991, Neil Patrick Harris surprised "The Simpsons" fans by taking over the voice of none other than mischievous Bart Simpson himself for an episode titled "Bart the Murderer," which follows Bart as he is blamed for the possible death of Principal Seymour Skinner.
Comedian Amy Schumer shared her vocal talents when she took on the role of Mrs. Burns, Monty Burns' mother, in "The Simpsons" episode "Monty Burns' Fleeing Circus."
Season 3 of "The Simpsons" turned electric when rock band Aerosmith's members appeared as themselves on an episode titled "Flaming Moe's." Just two years later, the band hit the top of the charts with their first No. 1 album, "Get a Grip" — leading some to believe that an appearance on the show was good luck for a celebrity's career.
Liev Schreiber has earned four Emmy nominations for his work as a narrator, so is it any wonder that "The Simpsons" tapped him to show off his skill on a May 2019 episode? The "Ray Donovan" star voiced the narrator of the documentary crime series "Dateline: Springfield" — a show within a show — on the episode titled "Woo-Hoo Dunnit?"
Credited as "Scare-uh Kill-vermin" on the annual Halloween episode of "The Simpsons" titled "Treehouse of Horror, XXVII" in 2016, comedian Sarah Silverman appeared as Rachel, Lisa Simpson's imaginary friend.
Even British singer Sting couldn't resist a spot on "The Simpsons." Sting appeared as an animated version of himself on "Radio Bart," the first episode to air in 1992.
Quite possibly our favorite celebrity senior citizen, Betty White, was making fans laugh on "The Simpsons" all the way back in 1999. In the episode "Missionary Impossible," Betty voiced herself asking callers for donations on a celebrity telethon.
J.K. Rowling, the author behind the "Harry Potter" series, made her animated debut on "The Simpsons" as a version of herself on the Season 15 episode "The Regina Monologues." Not to be outdone, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and English actor Ian McKellen also had parts on the episode.
On one of the most celebrity-stuffed episodes of "The Simpsons" ever — "Krusty Gets Kancelled" — the Red Hot Chili Peppers appeared as themselves, livening up the scene alongside fellow stars Hugh Hefner, Elizabeth Taylor, Luke Perry, Johnny Carson and Bette Midler.
Seven-time Oscar nominee Glenn Close has portrayed Homer's mother, Mona Simpson, on several episodes of "The Simpsons" over the years. Her first appearance came in 2012, and most recently, she appeared on the December 2019 episode "Todd, Todd, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?"
Tracy Morgan is known for his work on "30 Rock," but he's also lent his voice to "The Simpsons" more than once. He starred as himself during the third episode of the show's 30th season in October 2018 and played a tow-truck driver in a later episode, "Baby You Can't Drive My Car."
Dustin Hoffman shared his vocal talents with "The Simpsons" in 1991 when he played Mr. Bergstrom on the episode "Lisa's Substitute." Since nothing's hotter to Lisa Simpson than a big vocabulary and poetic license, it was a no-brainer that she'd fall head over heels for her sub.
Rapper, actor and producer Common appeared as himself alongside several other big names in hip-hop in the first hour-long episode (ever) of "The Simpsons," which was titled "The Great Phatsby" and aired in early in 2017.
Although Patrick Stewart may be best known as Professor Xavier in the "X-Men" film franchise, he's no stranger to voice work on animated shows. In fact, his appearance on "The Simpsons" as Number One in "Homer the Great" in 1995 could be considered a prelude to his more regular voice work on "Family Guy."
The creators of "The Simpsons" knew that no one could give life to Lisa Simpson's rich, spoiled friend Harper better than actress Kristen Bell. In the 2015 episode "Friend with Benefit," Harper, a billionaire's daughter, plays somewhat nice with her new middle-class friend, Lisa.
Snoop Dogg is another famous rapper who appeared on "The Simpsons" in the hour-long hip-hop-heavy episode "The Great Phatsby." Snoop voiced a super-chill animated version of himself on the show.
Kat Dennings played Valerie on the 2017 episode of "The Simpsons" titled "Mr. Lisa's Opus." The episode centers on Lisa and her college application journey as Ned works to cure Homer of his problem with alcohol.
In 2018, Jane Lynch played theme park manager Jeanie on an episode of "The Simpsons" titled "'Tis the 30th Season." During the episode, a desperate and determined Marge plans to save Christmas after a failed Black Friday shopping spree while Homer and the kids surprise her with a trip to a Florida resort. But it wasn't the first time the Emmy winner has appeared on the show: She also voiced a woman hired to serve as Homer's assistant on a Season 23 episode.
"Key & Peele" comedy star Keegan-Michael Key took a whirl as an animated character on "The Simpsons" during the special hour-long 2017 episode "The Great Phatsby." In it, he plays Jazzy James, a boy-band rap group alumnus who's recruited by Monty Burns to help him recover his swindled millions.
Longtime "Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek took a turn on "The Simpsons" as — you guessed it! — a version of himself. On the 1997 Christmas episode, "Miracle on Evergreen Terrace," Alex loses his marbles while hosting his famous game show.
Back in 1999, the late Stephen Hawking portrayed himself, lending his voice — well, his voice generator — to the episode "They Saved Lisa's Brain."
In 2017, financial self-empowerment wiz Suze Orman appeared as herself on "The Simpsons" in the episode titled "The Caper Chase," in which Monty Burns opens a college and strangely decides to hire Homer Simpson as a professor.