List of Boardwalk Empire characters

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The following is a list of characters from the HBO television show Boardwalk Empire. The show dramatizes the prohibition era in Atlantic City and the early history of the American Mafia. Although some of the characters on the show use the actual names of the historical figures upon which they are based, some have had their names changed for the program while some characters are fictional.

Characters[edit]

Main characters[edit]

ActorCharacterSeason(s)Character notesBased on
Steve BuscemiEnoch "Nucky" ThompsonRegular Seasons 1–5 (Deceased)The corrupt treasurer of Atlantic County and its most powerful political figure.Enoch L. Johnson[1]
Michael PittJames "Jimmy" DarmodyRegular Seasons 1–2 (Deceased)A former Princeton student who served in World War I. After returning home, Jimmy is hired by Nucky Thompson as his driver.Jimmy Boyd[2]
Kelly MacdonaldMargaret Thompson (formerly Schroeder, née Rohan)Regular Seasons 1–5 (Active)A young Irish widow and mother, she turns to Nucky for help and eventually becomes his lover and later, his wife.Mary Ill[1]
Michael ShannonNelson Van Alden / George MuellerRegular Seasons 1–5 (Deceased)A former Prohibition agent on the run after the murder of his former partner. Under the alias George Mueller, he inadvertently gets caught up in the conflict between Dean O'Banion and Al Capone. Years later killed by an undercover federal agent after his real identity is revealed.William Frank[1]
Shea WhighamElias "Eli" ThompsonRegular Seasons 1–5 (Active)Nucky's younger brother and former sheriff of Atlantic County.Alfred "Alf" Johnson[1]
Aleksa PalladinoAngela DarmodyRegular Seasons 1–2 (Deceased)Jimmy's wife and the mother of his young son.
Michael StuhlbargArnold RothsteinRegular Seasons 1–4 (Deceased)A powerful and intelligent New York gangster who enters into business with NuckyArnold Rothstein
Stephen GrahamAl CaponeRegular Seasons 1–5 (Incarcerated)A low-level Chicago gangster with ambitions of leading the Chicago mobAl Capone
Vincent PiazzaCharles "Lucky" LucianoRegular Seasons 1–5 (Active)A Sicilian-American gangster and close associate of RothsteinCharles "Lucky" Luciano
Paz de la HuertaLucy DanzigerRegular Seasons 1–2 (Unknown)Nucky's mistress and a former Ziegfeld Follies dancerNo historical basis[2]
Michael Kenneth WilliamsAlbert "Chalky" WhiteRegular Seasons 1–5 (Deceased)Nucky's counterpart in Atlantic City's black communityNo historical basis
Anthony LaciuraEdward "Eddie" KesslerRegular Seasons 1–4 (Deceased)Nucky's German personal assistant and valet. Committed suicide after being interrogated by federal agents.Louis Kessel[1]
Paul SparksMickey DoyleRegular Seasons 1–5 (Deceased)An Atlantic City bootleggerMickey Duffy[1]
Dabney ColemanCommodore Louis KaestnerRegular Seasons 1–2 (Deceased)Nucky's mentor and predecessor in Atlantic City. He is Jimmy's biological father, and is killed by his son.Louis Kuehnle[1]
Jack HustonRichard HarrowRecurring Season 1; Regular Seasons 2–4 (Deceased)A former Army marksman who allies with Jimmy and later Nucky. Disfigured during the war, he wears a mask over half of his face. Mortally Wounded while trying to kill Valentin Narcisse.
Gretchen MolGillian DarmodyRecurring Season 1; Regular Seasons 2–5 (Incarcerated)Jimmy's mother and an old friend of Nucky's. She is also Luciano's former lover.
Charlie CoxOwen SleaterRecurring Season 2; Regular Season 3 (Deceased)An Irish immigrant and IRA member. He has an affair with Margaret, while working his way up in Nucky's organization.
Bobby CanavaleGyp RosettiRegular Season 3 (Deceased)Sicilian gangster backed by Joe Masseria, who challenged Nucky. Killed by one of his own men.No historical basis
Ron LivingstonRoy PhillipsRegular Season 4 (Unknown)A wealthy out-of-town businessman who finds himself getting involved with Gillian Darmody.
Jeffrey WrightDr. Valentin NarcisseRegular Seasons 4–5 (Deceased)Harlem racketeer who challenges Chalky.Casper Holstein[3]

Recurring characters[edit]

ActorCharacterSeason(s)Character notesBased on
Greg AntonacciJohnny TorrioSeasons 1–5 (Active)Capone's boss in ChicagoJohnny Torrio[1]
Erik WeinerAgent SebsoSeason 1 (Deceased)Van Alden's partner.
William HillAlderman George O'NeillSeasons 1–2 (Deceased)One of Nucky's political cronies and ward bosses.
Robert ClohessyAl NearySeasons 1–2 (Deceased)One of Nucky's political cronies and ward bosses
Dominic ChianeseLeander WhitlockSeasons 2-5 (Unknown)Atlantic City lawyer and ally to the Commodore
William ForsytheManny HorvitzSeason 2-3 (Deceased)Philadelphia gangster
Anna KatarinaIsabelle JeunetSeasons 1, 3 (Unknown)A French woman who owns an haute couture shop on the boardwalk.
Max CasellaLeo D'AlessioSeason 1 (Deceased)A Philadelphia gangster Doyle owes money to.Leo Lanzetta[1]
Edoardo BalleriniIgnatius D'AlessioSeason 1 (Deceased)Leo's brother and another gangsterIgnatius Lanzetta[1]
Anatol YusefMeyer LanskySeasons 1–5 (Active)A young protégé of Rothstein and partners with LucianoMeyer Lansky[1]
Joseph RiccobeneFrankie YaleSeasons 1, 3–4 (Deceased)Brooklyn gangsterFrankie Yale[1]
Kevin O'RourkeEdward L. BaderSeasons 1–5 (Deceased)Atlantic City mayorEdward L. Bader[1]
Dana IveyMrs. McGarrySeason 1 (Unknown)A prominent leader of the Women's Suffrage and Temperance Movements.Susan B. Anthony[1]
Geoff PiersonSenator Walter EdgeSeasons 1–3 (Active)New Jersey Senator who thwarts some of Nucky's plans.Senator Walter Evans Edge
Pearce BuntingBill McCoySeason 1-4 (Active)Sea captain and rum runner for Nucky ThompsonBill McCoy[1]
Tracy MiddendorfBabetteSeasons 1–3 (Unknown, presumed deceased)Owner of Babette's Night Club
Natalie WachenLenore WhiteSeasons 2–4 (Active)Beautiful wife of Chalky White, and mother to his three children.
Michael ZegenBenny SiegelSeasons 2–3, 5 (Active)A low-level criminal working card-games for Lansky and Luciano.Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel
Glenn FleshlerGeorge RemusSeasons 2–4 (Incarcerated)A major bootlegger based in Ohio; refers to himself in the third-person.George Remus
Julianne NicholsonEsther RandolphSeasons 2–4 (Active)Assistant Attorney General who investigates Nucky for election fraud.Mabel Walker Willebrandt
Ivo NandiJoe MasseriaSeasons 2–5 (Deceased)New York mob boss who backs Rosetti against Nucky.Joe Masseria
Christopher McDonaldHarry DaughertySeasons 1–3 (Active)Campaign manager to Warren G. Harding, and later his Attorney General.Harry M. Daugherty
Daniel Cox (Season 1); Ed Jewett (Season 2 on)Jess SmithSeasons 1–3 (Deceased)Aide to Harry Daugherty.Jess Smith
Arron ShiverDean O'BanionSeasons 3–4 (Deceased)Irish-American mob boss in Chicago and rival of Johnny Torrio and Al Capone.Dean O'Banion
Stephen RootGaston Bullock MeansSeasons 3–4 (Incarcerated)Con artist, FBI agent, and "fixer" for bootleggers.Gaston Bullock Means
James CromwellAndrew MellonSeasons 3–4 (Active)Secretary of the Treasury who testifies at a government hearing that, if Prohibition is to be effective, more money needs to be spent.Andrew W. Mellon
Meg Chambers SteedleBillie KentSeason 3 (Deceased)A young Broadway actress who begins an affair with Nucky. Killed in an explosion meant for Nucky.Billie Dove[4]
Chris CaldovinoTonino SandrelliSeasons 3-5 (Deceased)Right hand man to Gyp Rosetti and Mafia lieutenant.
Brian GeraghtyJames "Jim" TolliverSeason 4 (Deceased)FBI agent under the direction of J. Edgar Hoover posing as a corrupt prohibition agent under the name Warren Knox in Atlantic City. Killed by Eli after trying to blackmail him.
Eric LadinJ. Edgar HooverSeason 4 (Active)Director of the Bureau of Investigation.J. Edgar Hoover
Domenick LombardozziRalph CaponeSeasons 4-5 (Active)Al Capone's brother.Ralph Capone
Morgan SpectorFrank CaponeSeason 4 (Deceased)Al Capone's level-headed brother.Frank Capone
Margot BinghamDaughter MaitlandSeason 4-5 (Unknown)Singer and ward of Dr. Valentin Narcisse who begins an affair with Chalky White.
John Ellison ConleeLouis KaestnerSeason 5 (Deceased, as of 1921)The Commodore as a young man.Louis Kuehnle

Characters as performers[edit]

ActorPerformerEpisodeNotes
Stephen DeRosaEddie Cantor"Boardwalk Empire",

"Broadway Limited",
"A Return to Normalcy",
"A Dangerous Maid",
"You'd Be Surprised",
"Resolution"

comedian and singer
Erin McGrath[5]Edith Day"Anastasia""Alice Blue Gown" (from "Irene")
John Treacy Egan[6]Duncan O'Connor"Nights in Ballygran""Carrickfergus"
A'Lisa MilesMamie Smith"Home""Crazy Blues"
Kathy BrierSophie Tucker"Belle Femme""Some of These Days"
Remy AuberjonoisHardeen"Paris Green"magician and escape artist (brother of Houdini)

Characters as athletes[edit]

ActorAthleteEpisodeNotes
Devin HarjesJack Dempsey"What Does the Bee Do?"

"Peg of Old"

boxer (heavyweight champion, 1919–26)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Johnson, Nelson (2010). Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times, and Corruption of Atlantic City. Plexus Publishing, Inc. ISBN 978-0-9666748-6-6. 
  2. ^ a b "Interview: 'Boardwalk Empire' creator Terence Winter". September 9, 2010. 
  3. ^ Moaba, Alex (2013-09-05). "'Boardwalk Empire': Jeffrey Wright On The Real-Life Racketeer Who Inspired His Season 4 Character (VIDEO)". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2013-09-17. 
  4. ^ Billie Dove,
  5. ^ Venutolo, Anthony, 'Boardwalk Empire' episode 4, 'Anastasia': Nucky's birthday bash and back room deals, The Star-Ledger, October 11, 2010
  6. ^ Venutolo, Anthony, 'Boardwalk Empire' recap: Van Alden busts up Nucky's Celtic bash, The Star-Ledger, October 18, 2010