Unforgotten series 5 cast

Unforgotten series 5 returns with Sinéad Keenan and stellar guest cast

Your head will be spinning with all the famous faces!

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Unforgotten returns to our screens with series 5, and the cast is arguably the BEST yet.

We know that actress Sinéad Keenan replaces Nicola Walker as the female lead, alongside Sanjeev Bhaskar’s DI Sunil ‘Sunny’ Khan.

And, like previous years, there’s an amazing guest cast too.

The series 5 cast includes a long-standing Casualty actress, a Game of Thrones legend, and a Hollyoaks hunk.

Here’s everything you need to know about the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

Unforgotten series 5 promo shot
Jess and Sunny team up in Unforgotten series 5 (Credit: ITV1)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Sanjeev Bhaskar plays DI Sunil ‘Sunny’ Khan

Sanjeev Bhaskar, 59, portrays DI Sunny Khan in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

Comedian and actor Sanjeev was catapulted to fame after appearing in the BBC Two comedy series Goodness Gracious Me.

He has since appeared in numerous comedies and dramas, and has a career spanning three decades.

After ditching his career as a marketing executive at IBM, Sanjeev pursued a job in showbusiness.

He appeared in comedy series The Real McCoy, Captain Butler, We Know Where You Live and Small Potatoes.

Between 1998 and 2015, he starred in Goodness Gracious Me, often recognised as the series that made him famous.

Sanjeev went on to star and write in the sitcom The Kumars at No. 42.

His more dramatic acting roles include the lead role of Dr Prem Sharma in The Indian Doctor and a main role as DI Sunny Khan in Unforgotten.

In January 2021, he was cast as Cain in the Netflix adaptation of The Sandman.

Most recently, he’s portrayed Les Vegas in Sandylands.

Sinéad Keenan as Jess in Unforgotten
Unforgotten series 5 cast: Sinéad Keenan joins the cast as DCI Jessica James (Credit: ITV1)

Who plays DCI Cassie Stuart replacement DCI Jess James?

Sinéad Keenan replaces Nicola Walker as the female lead, alongside Sanjeev Bhaskar’s DI Sunil ‘Sunny’ Khan.

The Irish actress, 45, plays DCI Jess James.

Dublin-born Sinéad began filming her new role earlier in 2022.

She’s best known for her BAFTA-nominated role as Melanie Jones in ITV’s Little Boy Blue.

Being Human fans will recognise her as Nina.

But she’s also played

She says: “I have long been an admirer of [writer] Chris Lang’s work so I am absolutely delighted to be joining the Unforgotten team.

“I’m very much looking forward to working with the extraordinary cast led by the brilliant and incredibly lovely, Sanjeev Bhaskar.

“And I’m hoping that if I play my cards right I might even get to take a peek in Sunny’s backpack!”

Writer Chris Lang added: “And so it begins, a new Unforgotten journey – and it’s scary, for Sunny and the Bishop Street team, for the audience, for all of us.

“But it’s also very, very, exciting, and I cannot wait for you to meet DCI Jessica ‘Jessie’ James, played by the always brilliant, Sinéad Keenan.”

Recently, Sinéad popped up as

CAROLINA MAIN as DS Fran Lingley in Unforgotten series 5
Carolina Main as DS Fran Lingley in Unforgotten series 5 (Credit: ITV1)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Carolina Main stars as DS Fran Lingley

Actress Carolina Main stars as DS Fran Lingley in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

She joined the show in series 2, and has since become an integral part of DI Sunny Khan’s team.

Carolina’s role as Fran is her most significant role to date.

Before appearing on the ITV series, the actress was best known for playing

She’s also played

JORDAN LONG as DS Murray Boulting.
Jordan Long as DS Murray Boulting in Unforgotten (Credit: ITV1)

Jordan Long plays DS Murray Boulting

Actor Jordan Long, 49, stars as DS Murray Boulting in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

He’s been on our TV screens for more than two decades.

One of his first significant roles was in two episodes of 15 Storeys High, opposite the late comedian Sean Lock.

He went on to star in the TV series Mike Bassett: Manager as Spike in 2005, and

In 2015, he joined the cast of Unforgotten series 1, and has been in every series so far.

His film roles include a

PIPPA NIXON as DC Karen Willets in Unforgotten
Actress Pippa Nixon as DC Karen Willets in Unforgotten (Credit: ITV1)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Pippa Nixon as DC Karen Willets

Pippa Nixon, 43, returns as DC Karen Willets in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

She’s appeared in the long-running detective drama ever since 2015, when the series started.

Pippa did not star in series 2 or 3, but returned for series 4 and 5.

One of Pippa’s earliest roles was as

In 2019, she portrayed

She’s obviously found a niche for playing coppers, too – she played

Other notable roles include Saskia Turner in The Chelsea Detective, Alice Taylor in Doc Martin, and

Martina Laird as Ebele Falade in Unforgotten series 5
Unforgotten series 5: Martina Laird as Ebele Falade (Credit: ITV1)

Martina Laird plays Ebele Falade

Actress Martina Laird, 51, stars as Ebele Falade in series 5 of Unforgotten.

Ebele is one of the central characters in the new series, and is somehow linked to the dead body found in episode 1.

Of course, Casualty fans will know Martina as Comfort Jones in the BBC One medical drama.

She played the role from 2001 to 2006, and was a fan favourite.

She reprised her role as Comfort for the 30th anniversary episode at the start of series 31.

Since departing Casualty, Martina has appeared as

Other notable roles include

Film roles include Janet in Boxing Day, Older Vera in Summerland, and

Rhys Yates as Jay Royce
Unforgotten series 5: Rhys Yates as Jay Royce (Credit: ITV1)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Rhys Yates plays Jay Royce

Actor Rhys Yates portrays Jay Royce in series 5 of Unforgotten.

At first, viewers will undoubtedly consider Rhys’ character Jay as a villain – but it might not be as simple as that.

2023 marks Rhys’ 10th anniversary on our screens.

His first ever screen role was as

Rhys went on to play Jake in the James Nesbitt drama Lucky Man, Artemis in Plebs, Rodney Bragg in EastEnders, and Julius in Britannia.

Between 2021 to 2022, Rhys portrayed Smiler in The Outlaws.

Other notable roles include Kit Hughes in London Kills, and Billy Kane in Silent Witness.

He’s also appeared in films, including Followers, Bloodyminded, and Postcards from London.

Mark Frost in Unforgotten
Actor Mark Frost as Dave Adams, opposite Martina Laird as Ebele (Credit: ITV1)

Mark Frost portrays Dave Adams

Actor Mark Frost stars as Dave Adams in Unforgotten series 5.

But you might not recognise him underneath all the piercings, tattoos and facial hair!

Mark Frost recently played Martin St Clair in the cast of Sherwood on BBC One.

Before that, he portrayed Iain Jarrett in Silent Witness.

Of course, soap fans will recognise Mark Frost right away.

Mark played villain Ray Crosby in Coronation Street.

Ray Crosby was the sleazy, corrupt businessman who arrived on the cobbles determined to bulldoze Weatherfield to build a luxury hotel.

The character is now in prison.

So actor Mark is free to take on new roles!

Before the ITV soap, Mark was known for his roles as George Calendar in Hetty Feather, and Tom Carne in Poldark.

He played DCI Jim Sullivan in the 2015 episodes One of Our Own, and DS Paul Baxter in 2003’s Fatal Error.

Ian McElhinney in Unforgotten
Unforgotten series 5 cast: Ian McElhinney as Lord Tony Hume (Credit: ITV1)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Ian McElhinney is Tony Hume

Actor Ian McElhinney, 74, guest stars as Tony Hume in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

The Irish actor recently starred as in the cast of The Outlaws, and played Adam Corey in Bloodlands.

Veteran Ian also appeared as Granda Joe McCool in Derry Girls, and Ronnie in The Split.

Other notable TV roles in the past few years include

Game of Thrones fans will know Ian as

Ian is also known for playing

He’s been in dozens of films, including Cellar Door, Dave Allen at Peace, Zoo, Redemption Road, and Rogue One.

Max Rinehart as Karol in Unforgotten
Max Rinehart as Karol Wojski in Unforgotten (Credit: ITV1)

Max Rinehart stars as Karol

Actor Max Rinehart stars as Karol Wojski in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

Karol is somehow linked to Jess and Sunny’s cold case but, at first, we don’t know how.

Max recently played a banker in Industry series 2, and Dylan Barker in two episodes of Hollyoaks.

He also portrayed

However, Max is perhaps more recognisable for his film roles.

He’s appeared as Slade in They Found Hell, Teenage Kit in Missing You Already, and Rory in The Bad Education Movie.

Hayley Mills in Unforgotten
Hayley Mills as Lady Emma Hume in the cast of Unforgotten series 5 (Credit: ITV1)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Hayley Mills plays Tony’s wife Emma Hume

Veteran actress Hayley Mills will play Tony’s wife Emma Hume.

The TV and film legend shouldn’t need an introduction, as she’s been acting since she was a child.

Those of us of a certain age will know her for playing Pollyanna, in the film of the same name, and for playing twins in the original version of The Parent Trap.

Can you believe, Hayley first appeared on screen in 1947 – when she was just a baby – in the film So Well Remembered.

Her early fame is thanks to her famous parents – she’s the daughter of Sir John Mills and Mary Hayley Bell.

Of course, Wild at Heart fans will know her as

Hayley, 76, recently played nasty loan shark Connie in the C5 thriller Compulsion.

Georgia Mackenzie plays Dr Leanne Balcombe
Georgia Mackenzie returns as pathologist Dr Leanne Balcombe (Credit: ITV1)

Georgia Mackenzie returns as pathologist Dr Leanne Balcombe

Actress Georgia Mackenzie,49, returns as pathologist Dr Leanne Balcombe.

Dr Leanne Balcombe has popped up in various episodes of the ITV drama, and has starred in 6 episodes between 2018 and 2023.

She first appeared in series 3.

Actress Georgia recently played R

Other notable roles include Carol Walcott in Casualty, Jennifer Headley in Waterloo Road, and Ronnie in Border Cafe.

She played Zoe in 20 Things To Do Before You’re 30,

In real life, Georgia is divorced from actor Fantastic Beasts actor Richard Coyle, and they share a teenage daughter called Purdy.

Andrew Lancel as Steve James in Unforgotten
Andrew Lancel as Steve James in Unforgotten (Credit: ITV1)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Andrew Lancel joins the cast as Steve James

Actor Andrew Lancel joins the cast as Steve James, Jess’s husband.

And he’s no stranger to a cop drama!

Of course, Andrew is famous for playing DI Neil Manson in The Bill from 2003 to 2010.

The character was front and centre throughout the seven years he was featured.

At one stage, he found himself framed for murder, and also became embroiled in the search for a missing child named Amy Tennant.

Andrew recently played police officer DS Paul Sampson on The Thief, His Wife And The Canoe.

Coronation Street fans will know him as villain Frank Foster back in 2011.

Frank became wrapped up in the dodgy dealings of Underworld while on the Cobbles.

Viewers were horrified when he sexually assaulted Carla’s PA Maria Connor.

However, his shocking reign of terror on the cobbles came to an end when he was murdered.

After a shocking whodunnit, it was revealed that his mother, Anne Foster, had killed him.

Andrew went on to win the actor the Villain of the Year Award at the British Soap Awards in 2010 before he left the soap.

Meanwhile, Andrew has also had roles on shows including Casualty, Marcella, Holby City and the groundbreaking LGBTQ+ series Queer as Folk.

Zephryn Taitte as Cyril in Call the Midwife
Zephryn Taitte, seen here as Cyril in Call the Midwife, joins Unforgotten as Scott (Credit: BBC One)

Zephryn Taitte stars as Scott

Actor Zephryn Taitte stars as Scott in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

But Call the Midwife will know the actor as Cyril in the long-running BBC midwife drama.

Actor Zaphryn has played Cyril Robinson since 2019.

Before that, he was perhaps most famous for playing

He also played R

He’s popped up in several films, including Daemon Mind, No Shade, Dirtymoney, and Flashmob.

Kate Robbins as Bev in Silent Witness
Kate Robbins as Bev in Silent Witness (Credit: BBC Studios/Kieron McCarron)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Kate Robbins plays Kate

Kate Robbins portrays Jess’ mum Kate in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

What hasn’t she been in recently!

The actress and comedian Kate Robbins recently guest starred as Bev in Silent Witness series 26.

Kate, 64, is mum to Emily Atack, but very much famous in her own right, too.

She’s known for her varied career as a singer, comedian and actor.

She scored a top 10 single in the UK Official Charts with More Than in Love in the early 1980s – and even represented us in the Eurovision Song Contest!

Acting roles include Penny Spencer-Wright in After Life, where fans demanded she get her own spin-off show.

She’s also voiced several characters in Spitting Image, including Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Diana, Joan Collins, and Cherie Blair.

Kate also had her one comedy sketch show, as well as one with her brother Ted.

EastEnders fans will know she recently played Jen Glover in the BBC soap.

Nabil Elouahabi in Trigger Point
Nabil Elouahabi recently popped up in Trigger Point (Credit: ITV)

Nabil Elouahabi is Rashid Ghulam

Actor Nabil Elouahabi, 48, stars as Dr Rashid Ghulam in the cast of Unforgotten series 5.

British Moroccan actor Nabil recently starred as Younes Mehanni in The Tower – the grief stricken father of teenage Muslim girl Farah Mehenni who is found dead at the bottom of the tower.

He also starred as

Of course, actor Nabil Elouahabi is most famous for his role in EastEnders.

He played Tariq from 2003 to 2005.

Nabil went on to portray Meesh in Generation Kill, Mr Mustapha in Top Boy, Yusuf in The Night Of, and Rabee in Our Girl.

He is also recognisable for his vitiligo, a long-term condition where pale white patches develop on the skin.

Maria Friedman in EastEnders
Maria Friedman as Linda’s mum in EastEnders (Credit: BBC One)

Unforgotten series 5 cast: Maria Friedman plays Rebecca

Maria Friedman, 62, portrays Rebecca in Unforgotten series 5.

EastEnders fans will know the actress as larger than life Elaine, Linda’s mum.

She played the role from 2014 to 2017.

Prior to that, Maria was best known for her performances in the West End productions of Chicago, Passion, The Woman in White and Ragtime.

Most recently, Maria has played Dangerous Liaisons.

Lisa Faulkner as Hannah King in Waterloo Road
Lisa Faulkner, seen here as Hannah King in Waterloo Road, guest stars in Unforgotten episode 2 (Credit: BBC)

Who plays Flick in Unforgotten episode 2? It’s Lisa Faulkner!

Actress Lisa Faulkner, 51, guest stars as Flick in episode 2 of Unforgotten (Monday, February 06, 2023).

She appears in a small role in connection to the murder DI Sunny Khan and DCI Jess James are investigating.

Lisa’s character Flick is questioned due to the fact she lives in the house next to where the murdered woman was found.

Although Lisa is now widely recognised for her cooking skills, alongside her husband John Torode in Weekend Kitchen, she came to fame as an actress.

She’s been on our screens ever since 1992, when she appeared in the film The Lover as Helene Lagonelle.

In 1995, she played

Brookside fans will know that she played Louise Hope in 10 episodes of the C4 soap between 1997 to 1998.

She is perhaps best known for playing VMarsha Thomason.

Spooks viewers will no doubt remember her shocking and horrifying death in the series in 2002.

Lisa is also known for playing

Most recently, she’s starred as

Hayley Tamaddon as Andrea Beckett in Corrie
Hayley Tamaddon, seen here as Andrea Beckett in Corrie, joins the cast of Unforgotten (Credit: ITV1)

Hayley Tamaddon plays

Actress Hayley Tamaddon, 46, joins the cast of Unforgotten in episodes 3 and 4.

She plays social worker Judy Mexbury, who was assigned Precious Falade’s case before her tragic death.

Soap fans will know Hayley very well for her roles in both Coronation Street and Emmerdale.

Hayley played

She also portrayed

The actress has also popped up in single episodes of Where the Heart Is, The Royal, Waterloo Road, Shameless, and Accused.

Hayley won the fifth series of Dancing on Ice in March 2010, with skating partner Daniel Whiston.

She returned for the ninth series in 2014, which saw many of the previous winners and favourites from the show compete.

The actress and singer is also known for her many musical theatre roles in the likes of Grease, Fame, Boogie Nights, and Mamma Mia!

Unforgotten cast series 5
The cast of Unforgotten series 5 (Credit: ITV1)

Who else stars in the cast of Unforgotten series 5?

Elsewhere, EastEnders star Daniel Boys – aka portrays Paul Bradley.

Michelle Bonnard plays Sunny’s partner, Sal.

She’s previously played Daisy Murray in Doctors.

River Archer – who played Jake Wright in one episode of Easties – stars as Eliot James, while The Crown of the Kings star Hubert Hanowicz plays Szymon Nowak.

Newcomer Anna Benton portrays Sophie Coulson, Andor’s Hebe Beardsall stars as Cheryl, Theodosia’s Nana Agyeman-Bediako stars as Mustafa Ali, and Endeavour star Claire Ganaye is Elise.

Johnny Ong plays Tai, and Nimmi Harasgama portrays Seema.

The Good Karma Hospital viewers will know actress Nimmi as 

We can also reveal that Sinéad Keenan’s very own sister Grainne, who is also an actress, will star in the upcoming series of Unforgotten!

She’ll play Debbie in two episodes of the drama – episode 3 and episode 4.

In episode 2, Maternal actor Abhin Galeya stars as Mehdi Hussein, French actor Louis Bernard portrays Serge, and Brassic’s Magnus Bruun plays Josef Morten.

The Rook actor Simon Bubb stars as John Caxton, Emmerdale’s Laura Pitt-Pulford plays Maggie Bowden, Doctors’ James Quinn is Dennis Grimshaw, and Colosseum star Archie Rowell plays William Hume.

This Is Going to Hurt star Daniel Fearn plays Eddie, and Pennyworth’s Charlie MacGechan plays PC Ellis.

Read more: Unforgotten: FIRST LOOK as Sinead Keenan takes over from Nicola Walker

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Unforgotten series 5 begins in February 2o23 on ITV1.

Are you looking forward to Unforgotten series 5? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix.

Helen Fear
TV Editor