Twitter was stunned to discover how many famous friends Sonny and Rico had.
Everyone knows Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas played James "Sonny" Crockett and Ricardo "Rico" Tubbs... but did you know just how many famous celebs they were up against?
Twitter certainly didn't as "Miami Vice" trended high on Tuesday night, after one user posted an amazing thread of A-Listers on the show "before they were famous."
Who could forget when 20-year-old Julia Roberts played art gallery manager/drug dealer's assistant with a penchant for bad boys, Polly Wheeler? Or when a 22-year-old Ben Stiller starred as small-time con Fast Eddie Felcher, in what was his third ever acting gig?
And it wasn't just actors either — many famous musicians got in on the act(ing) too! Check out the terrific list below for appearances by Phil Collins, Willie Nelson, Frank Zappa, Leonard Cohen and even James Brown!
Bruce Willis playing arms dealer extraordinaire Tony Amato in Miami Vice’s first season. Four months later, he was trading barbs with Cybill Shepherd as P.I. David Addison in Moonlighting pic.twitter.com/w9NClkIizv
Phil Collins even turned up in Miami Vice to play game show host/con man Phil “The Shill” Mayhew, who moved to Miami from London and quickly set about depleting the bank accounts of the city’s richest residents with a shady drug deal. pic.twitter.com/3C4ZsMs43l
In season 3 Viggo Mortensen partnered up with Lou Diamond Phillips to play two junior detectives working a case with Crockett and Tubbs. But when a deal goes bad and Viggo is killed, his partner becomes convinced that Tubbs is dirty. pic.twitter.com/A6DKnaK22g
In its 3rd season, “When Irish Eyes Are Crying,” Detective Gina Calabrese (Saundra Santiago) falls for an Irish philanthropist—played by Liam Neeson—who turns out to be a former IRA member and current terrorist. pic.twitter.com/tVnjUxRl65
Stanley Tucci with hair (ish) appeared in season 3 of Miami Vice as crime lord Frank Mosca. He’d appeared previously on the show as the adoptive father of a smuggled baby and that went so well they asked him back to be a bad guy. pic.twitter.com/hmMXv4n7kw
In season 3 Sonny Crockett is in love. And with a lovely young ER doctor named Theresa Lyons, played by Helena Bonham Carter. There’s just one problem: she also happens to be a heroin addict, which causes a bit of friction in the relationship pic.twitter.com/FrabMIFHhP
While the men are out busting up drug deals, the ladies of Miami Vice can usually be found in hooker attire, working undercover as prostitutes. So it’s only befitting that the show would feature a few pimps in its time, John Turturro among them. 1980’s tv was insane. pic.twitter.com/S4fur7Q3Ur
If there’s one thing an undercover cop should never do, it’s fall in love with a prostitute. Which is exactly what Bill Paxton, as Vic Romano, does. Much to the dismay of a pimp named Silk, played by Wesley Snipes pic.twitter.com/DgiXT0fYyj
Ron Pearlman pops up as the commissioner of prisons on the Miami Vice episode "Walk-Alone." In his position, he asks the Vice team to get a man inside the prison for an undercover sting. pic.twitter.com/sLaUWvJR0I
In 1987 Ian McShane appeared Season 3's "Knock, Knock... Who's There?" with an amazing Latino accent. He later played a General/dictator who plans on leaving his country, betraying the drug dealers who funded his rise to power. Crockett & Tubbs are tasked to keep him alive! pic.twitter.com/JMX0AO6lxj
Season 2, Episode 4 (“Out Where the Buses Don’t Run”) gives us Little Richard as Reverend Marvelle Quinn preaching an anti-drug sentiment and sending his disciples out to spread the word on the streets of South Beach. pic.twitter.com/H44lGfI296
This is where it starts to get REALLY surreal. Leonard Cohen appears Season 2, (“French Twist”) Initially the plan was for Cohen to portray the main villain but his role was cut to two phone conversations totalling a minute and a half.
Combine the hardest working man in showbiz with a government conspiracy and a touch of the paranormal and you’ll get probably the show’s strangest guest appearance, you'll also get James Brown in Season 4, Episode 7 (“Missing Hours”) pic.twitter.com/hXcvb2ZwBj
Frank Zappa was known for many things but acting wasn’t really one of them. That’s why it was such a surprise to see him on Miami Vice. Here he plays an intimidatingly persistent character hell-bent on recovering a large sum of money. pic.twitter.com/1t41j61VoM
In 1986 Miami Vice fan Gene Simmons appears as Newton Windsor Blade, a drug dealer, known as the "Sears and Roebuck" of controlled substances. Crockett tried to bust Blade for three years but never was able to catch Blade and the drugs in the same place at the same time pic.twitter.com/Qp902UNbvY
Pam Grier had a reoccurring role (rightfully so) as Valerie Gordon, a NYPD Detective and on-again, off-again love interest for Tubbs in the episodes " Rites of Passage", " The Prodigal Son ", and " Too Much, Too Late ". She also kicked ass a lot. pic.twitter.com/VPW5jRA8zL
Episode 2 from season 3 featured a blurry eyed John Taylor from @duranduran. Weapons were being supplied to unnamed fighters in an unnamed Central American country, the squad have to go and sort it out. (This episode is definitely NOT about the Contras) pic.twitter.com/P9jMuNZZD0
In season 4 @theharryshearer makes an appearance. The squad is on the trail of a stolen canister containing priceless semen of a prized bull called Gargantua. A dangerous Cuban spy is also after the canister, but why?.... pic.twitter.com/nb1CLsdusq
Penn Jillette played Jimmy Borges, Newton Windsor Blade's NY buddy and coke dealer in Season 2 premiere "The Prodigal Son". Sacco's men caught up with poor Jimmy in his NYC loft after he helped Crockett and Tubbs try to unload their stolen product. pic.twitter.com/2zaewSQ4sO