12 Popular Secondary TV Characters Who Were Promoted To Lead Roles

  
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10. Castiel – Supernatural

Supernatural has always had a very simple cast thanks to the Winchester brothers leading the show and secondary characters offering consistent support, and although all of the secondary characters have been great, one really stood out. When Misha Collins signed as the angel Castiel, his character was only supposed to be in for a six episode storyline when he appeared in the first episode of season four. His humor and added dynamic to the relationship between Sam and Dean quickly became praised and, after carrying on throughout season four, he was promoted to a series regular in season five. Now his original six episodes have turned into 103 and he has become as much of a fan favorite as the Winchesters.

David Gray / © THE CW / courtesy everett collection

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9. Fonzie – Happy Days

“The Fonz” is one of the most well-known TV characters in recent television history and odds are those that didn’t even watch Happy Days know about Henry Winkler’s iconic character. Originally, Happy Days was supposed to be led by Richie Cunningham, played by Ron Howard, who was fresh off the fame of starring in American Graffiti, but as the first season aired, it was the secondary character of Arthur Fonzarelli “Fonzie” that was getting the most attention. Despite his start as a supporting character to Richie Cunningham, by season two Winkler was given top billing and the network even considered changing the name to Fonzie’s Happy Days, but Winkler rejected the suggestion.


(c)Paramount/Courtesy: Everett Collection

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