A quick guide to every major character on ‘Succession’

Succession season 3 poster
‘Succession’ season three premieres on October 17. HBO
  • HBO’s “Succession” follows the high-stakes battle for control of media conglomerate Waystar Royco.
  • The Roy family sits at the center of the mayhem, as patriarch Logan Roy founded the company.
  • Warning: This article contains spoilers for the first two seasons of “Succession.”
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The third season of “Succession” is finally coming to HBO, and there’s no shortage of players circling the top seat of the fictional media conglomerate Waystar Royco.

Thus far, the company’s founder and CEO Logan Roy has warded off threats from all directions, including those coming from within his family.

But with each coup, scandal, and multi-billion dollar acquisition comes new faces, making it challenging to keep track of who’s who in the boardroom.

Ahead of season three, arriving October 17, Insider created a guide to the main characters on HBO’s Emmy-winning dramedy, written and created by Jesse Armstrong.

Logan Roy
Brian cox as logan roy succession
Brian Cox stars as Logan Roy on ‘Succession.’ Peter Kramer/HBO
Without Logan Roy, there would be no Waystar Royco.

The Scotsman (played by Brian Cox) built the multi-billion dollar empire from the ground up, taking a gruff, bulldozing approach to maintain control in both his professional and personal life. 

As the Waystar Royco founder and CEO (who turns 80 in season one) accepts that he will one day have to name a successor, he becomes keenly aware that just about everyone in his inner circle — from his children to his most trusted advisors — wants a shot at the top job. 

The problem is, they vacillate between trying to gain approval from him and plotting to dethrone him. So far, Logan has consistently come out on top.

He knows he holds all the power and doesn’t hesitate to make empty promises, pull strings, and intimidate his opponents to keep his operation in line.  

Kendall Roy
Jeremy strong as kendall roy on succession
Jeremy Strong plays Kendall Roy on the HBO hit series ‘Succession.’ Zach Dilgard/HBO
Kendall, one of Logan’s three children from his second marriage, initially seems like the obvious frontrunner in the race to take over as CEO. 

After battling drug addiction and working through a difficult divorce, the hard-edged businessman (played by Jeremy Strong) is eager to scale the corporate ladder and prove himself as a worthy replacement to his father.

Logan’s unwillingness to retire, however, leads Kendall down a path of impatience and capricious decision-making.

While the heir takes hit after hit at his father (organizing a vote of no confidence and staging a corporate coup that spirals into a high-stakes proxy fight), Logan typically lures Kendall back under his wing, either through blackmail or manipulation. 

But when Logan enlists his son to step forward as the public face of a corporate scandal on the season-two finale, Kendall pins culpability on his father instead, a betrayal that potentially does irreparable damage to their relationship.

Siobhan “Shiv” Roy
Shiv Roy Succession season two HBO
Sarah Snook as Shiv Roy on HBO’s ‘Succession.’ Zach Dilgard/HBO
Shiv Roy (played by Sarah Snook) is Logan’s sole daughter. He had her with his second wife and affectionately refers to her as “Pinky.”  

For years, Shiv separates herself from her family’s conservative-leaning media conglomerate, pursuing a career in liberal politics instead. 

Shiv leaves the political world and enters the ring after Logan secretly promises her the CEO role.

Power-hungry and confident, she takes her father at his word. But when Logan later sends mixed messages about their agreement, she begins to doubt the value of his promise.

Her husband, Tom Wambsgans (Matthew Macfadyen), also works at Waystar Royco. And while their interests mostly align, Shiv throws a wrench in their relationship by asking for an open marriage on their wedding night. 

Roman Roy
Kieran culkin as roman roy on succession
Kieran Culkin plays Roman Roy on ‘Succession.’ Graeme Hunter/HBO
Of the three Roy siblings under serious consideration for the Waystar Royco CEO position, Roman Roy (played by Kieran Culkin) is the underdog. 

Though he shows potential in his position as the company’s chief operating officer, Roman’s snappy, sarcastic, and vulgar personality keeps those around him from taking him seriously. Still, he does what he can to stay on Logan’s good side.

Roman finds an unlikely ally in the company’s general counsel, Gerri Kellman (J. Smith-Cameron). They covertly look out for each other’s interests during top-level executive meetings.

Their relationship isn’t physical but borders on being sexual, as Roman masturbates to Gerri’s insults during their closed-door conversations.

Connor Roy
Connor roy on succession
Alan Ruck plays Connor Roy on ‘s ‘Succession.’ HBO
Connor Roy (Alan Ruck) is the oldest Roy sibling and the family member most removed from the business. Logan had him with his first wife.

Living on a New Mexico ranch called Austerlitz, Connor exists outside of the Roys’ Manhattan bubble.

He busies himself with hobbies, like collecting antiques and launching an amateur presidential campaign, rather than entering the rat race for CEO. 

Tom Wambsgans
Matthew Macfadyen succession
Matthew Macfadyen plays Tom Wambsgans on HBO’s ‘Succession.’ Zach Dilgard/HBO
When Tom Wambsgans meets his wife Shiv, his life changes.

The Twin Cities-native (played by Matthew Macfadyen) comes from more humble beginnings than the billionaire family he marries into. Now that he’s had a taste of the Roys’ power and status, he’s obsessed with holding onto it. 

As a cruise and, eventually, global news executive, Tom manages Greg Hirsch (Nicholas Braun), a Roy relative brought on as his executive assistant. In an effort to exercise his authority, Tom both mentors and brutally hazes the young newcomer.

While Tom’s relationship with Shiv is his ticket into the Roys’ ultra-privileged lifestyle, the Midwesterner struggles to accept his wife’s desire for an open marriage.

Greg Hirsch
Alan ruck nicholas braun on succession as conor and greg
Nicholas Braun plays Greg Hirsch on ‘Succession.’ Zach Dilgard/HBO
Greg Hirsch is connected to the Roy family through his maternal grandfather Ewan Roy, Logan’s estranged older brother.

Under his mother’s instructions, Greg (played by Nicholas Braun) moves to New York City to seek employment at Waystar Royco. Logan hires him as Tom’s executive assistant.

While working in the cruise department, Greg becomes embroiled in a corporate coverup. He safeguards key papers as personal leverage, later providing them to Kendall during the bombshell season-two press conference. 

As far as Greg has come, there are countless obstacles in sight for the naive outsider. The more he meshes with the Roys, the more he disappoints Ewan, who eventually forces his grandson to choose between his inheritance and his career.

Unwilling to walk away from the Roys’ ultra-powerful world, Greg selects the latter.

Marcia Roy
Marcia on succession hiam abbass
Hiam Abbass as Marcia on HBO’s ‘Succession.’ Zach Dilgard/HBO
Beirut-born Marcia Roy (played by Hiam Abbass) is Logan’s third wife. 

The Roy children don’t fully trust Marcia, as she’s an exceedingly private person that holds major sway in Logan’s decisions. Her influence is proven by her ability to get her son, Amir, a high-ranking job at Waystar Royco.

Though Marcia is extremely protective of her husband, she pulls away after he forms a close bond with fellow media CEO Rhea Jarrell (Holly Hunter) in season two. 

Gerri Kellman
Gerri kellman on succession
J. Smith-Cameron plays Gerri Kellman on ‘Succession.’ Graeme Hunter/HBO
Gerri has had a long career at Waystar Royco as one of Logan’s most trusted employees. 

The general counsel (played by J. Smith-Cameron) is the master of knowing when to speak up and when to fade into the background.

Unlike many of the other Waystar Royco executives, Gerri doesn’t use intimidation tactics to get her way. Instead, she sits back and strikes when no one is watching. 

Her stealthy maneuvering has served her; She’s solidified a position in the family’s orbit. 

Frank Vernon
Peter friedman as frank vernon on succession
Peter Friedman as Frank Vernon on ‘Succession.’ HBO
Frank is one of the most senior members on the Waystar Royco roster, serving as Logan’s chief operating officer and advisor for many years. 

However, Logan’s trust in Frank (played by Peter Friedman) wanes after he backs Kendall’s vote of no confidence in season one. 

The head honcho eventually lets bygones be bygones, inviting his longtime confidante back into the Waystar Royco fold. 

Karl Muller
Karl muller on 'Succession'
David Rasche takes on the role of Karl Muller on ‘Succession.’ HBO
Karl (David Rasche) is the Waystar Royco chief financial officer. He reports directly to Logan and is a member of his inner circle. 
Jamie Laird
Danny huston as jamie laird on succession
Danny Huston plays Jamie Laird on ‘Succession.’ Peter Kramer/HBO
Jaime (played by Danny Huston) joins Logan’s team as an outside banker and advisor. 
Hugo Baker
Gerri and hugo on succession
Fisher Stevens plays Hugo Baker on HBO’s ‘Succession.’ Peter Kramer/HBO
Hugo (Fisher Stevens) is a top Waystar Royco communications executive. When crisis strikes, he’s usually the person strategizing the Roys’ next public move.
Stewy Hosseini
Stewy Hosseini succession
Arian Moayed plays Stewy Hosseini on ‘Succession.’ HBO
Stewy (played by Arian Moayed) is a successful private equity investor.

Kendall knows Stewy from their days at university and approaches his long-time friend with a plot to push his father out of Waystar Royco and take over.

But after Logan covers up incriminating information for Kendall, the Waystar Royco heir abandons ship. 

Stewy doesn’t retreat, however, teaming up with Logan’s rival Sandy Furness to stage a hostile takeover of Waystar Royco. 

Sandy Furness
Sandy furness succession
Larry Pine plays Sandy Furness on ‘Succession.’ HBO
If there’s anyone that Logan doesn’t want near Waystar Royco, it’s Sandy Furness. 

The fellow media mogul (played by Larry Pine) is Logan’s long-time competitor. Sandy joins Stewy in his pursuit of control of Waystar Royco.  

In a conquest to convince shareholders that the Roys are driving the company into the ground, Sandy is determined to remove the family’s hold on the business. 

Lady Caroline Collingwood
Lady Caroline Collingwood on succession
Harriet Walter plays Lady Caroline Collingwood on ‘Succession.’ Graeme Hunter/HBO
Caroline (played by Harriet Walter) is Logan’s second wife and the mother to Kendall, Shiv, and Roman. She resides in the UK.

Because she owns shares of Waystar Royco’s stock, Logan orders the children to make sure she sides with him in the proxy fight.

Rhea Jarrell
Holly hunter cherry jones succession
Holly Hunter plays Rhea Jarrell on ‘Succession.’ Peter Kramer/HBO
Rhea enters the mix during Logan’s conquest to acquire PGM, a well-respected media company owned by the Pierce family. She serves as the CEO.

After the head of the Pierce family finds out about Rhea’s off-the-record conversations with Logan, she fires her. Free from her post, Rhea spends more and more time by Logan’s side, angering his wife and children.

He announces Rhea as the next Waystar Royco CEO, an offer she eventually declines as more details surface about the corporate coverup. Her values, she tells Logan, do not align with his business. 

Nan Pierce
Holly hunter cherry jones succession
The third season of ‘Succession’ will premiere on October 17. Peter Kramer/HBO
Nan (played by Cherry Jones) is the head of the family that owns PGM. Logan is desperate to win the matriarch over, as he’s gunning to acquire the company. 

Though Nan briefly considers the deal, she pulls out after a report details a sexual misconduct scandal within Waystar Royco. She also fires Rhea for her handling of the deal. 

Naomi Pierce
Annabelle Dexter-Jones jeremy strong succession season two
Naomi Pierce (Annabelle Dexter-Jones) and Kendall Roy (Jeremy Strong) on ‘Succession.’ HBO
Another Pierce family member that sits on the PGM board, Naomi (Annabelle Dexter-Jones) enters the fold in season two.

When the Roy and Pierce families meet up about a potential acquisition, she and Kendall bond over their past addictions. Even after the deal falls through, the duo remains in touch.

Naomi joins the Roys on their yacht on the season two finale but departs early after Logan makes a fuss about her presence. 

Ewan Roy
Ewan roy on succession
James Cromwell appears as Ewan Roy in ‘Succession.’ HBO
Ewan is Logan’s older brother, who was born in Scotland and resides in Canada. 

The siblings do not get along, as Ewan (James Cromwell) views Waystar Royco as an evil corporation spreading harmful messaging. He also considers his brother’s family to be morally bankrupt and cautions his grandson Greg against trusting them. 

Fed up with Greg’s involvement in his brother’s company, Ewan gives him an ultimatum: quit the job or forfeit his $US250 ($AU339) million inheritance. 

Willa Ferreyra
Justine lupe and alan ruck on succession
Justine Lupe plays Willa Ferreyra on ‘Succession.’ Zach Dilgard/HBO
Willa Ferreyra (played by Justine Lupe) is Connor’s girlfriend. She meets the eldest Roy sibling while working as an escort, though she dreams of becoming a professional playwright.

With some prodding, Willa accepts Connor’s offer to finance her production under two conditions: she moves to Austerlitz and agrees to an exclusive relationship.

Though Connor pours millions into Willa’s debut play, it receives scathing reviews.

Rava Roy
Rava roy succession
Natalie Gold as Rava Roy on ‘Succession.’ HBO
Rava (Natalie Gold) is Kendall’s ex-wife.

Though they’re no longer a couple, the exes remain in each other’s lives and co-parent their children, Sophie and Iverson. 

Gil Eavis
Eric Bogosian as Gil Eavis succession
Eric Bogosian plays Gil Eavis on ‘Succession.’ Peter Kramer/HBO
Gil (played by Eric Bogosian) is a democratic senator from Pennsylvania.

He hires Shiv to work as a strategist on his presidential campaign, though their professional relationship sours as she becomes more ingrained in her family’s business. 

At the congressional hearings investigating the Waystar Royco cruise department, Gil grills members of the Roy family about the corporation’s inner workings. 

Nate Sofrelli
Nate Sofrelli succession
Nate Sofrelli is played by Ashley Zukerman on ‘Succession.’ HBO
Nate (played by Ashley Zukerman) is a political strategist on Gil’s presidential campaign. He taps on Shiv, an old flame, to join the team. 

When she agrees, they have an affair despite both being engaged to other people. Tom finds out about their relationship at his and Shiv’s wedding and demands Nate’s departure.