Christopher Meloni Teases 'SVU' Reunion: "Benson & Stabler Are Inextricably Linked"
Christopher Meloni has opened up about his upcoming return to the Law & Order universe. Read his new comments on the "Benson/Stabler" SVU reunion and his new series, Organized Crime.
Christopher Meloni is getting nostalgic and looking forward to the near future as he discusses his return to the Law & Order universe.
The 59-year-old actor is set to return to Law & Order: SVU when it enters season 22 this fall. Not only that, but he'll also lead the newest entry in the Law & Order universe, Organized Crime, which will air in the time slot following SVU on NBC.
Ahead of these major events, Meloni spoke to The New York Post about his feelings on returning and his SVU exit nine years ago.
"It just has to be," Meloni began to say of the reunion with his former screen partner, "Olivia Benson" (Mariska Hargitay). "Benson and Stabler are inextricably linked, locked and connected."
Christopher Meloni on "Benson/Stabler" Law & Order reunions
After nine years away, on- and off-screen, Meloni believes many angles exist to explore the "Benson/Stabler" relationship in the years to come.
"I think there is truly and deeply a worthwhile, inherent drama in exploring that relationship and the complexity of how Stabler left — the unresolved emotions both characters feel and how the fans feel," he told The New York Post.
"How my character left was really unsatisfying, I think," Meloni added.
The reason for his departure was never fully addressed, though his character was written out of the show after season 12. For that reason, he says, "It almost feels that we won't do one or two [crossover] episodes and move on our merry way.
"I just think there will always be possibilities there. People will always be hungry to see how we interact and how that dynamic has changed."
Christopher Meloni on his new show, Law & Order: Organized Crime
As for Meloni's new Law & Order series, he revealed that it came by way of a surprise proposal from franchise mastermind Dick Wolf.
"It truly came about by Dick Wolf calling and saying he wanted to discuss a project," Meloni recalled. "I was like, 'Oh, really? OK.' I was shocked. I never thought this was going to happen, but the circumstances for me changed," he said. "So 'yes' became the correct answer."
The double reunion comes under friendly circumstances as well, as the actor indicates his exit nearly a decade ago occurred without relation to conflicts.
"How I left was a different issue and had nothing to do with the 'Law & Order' people, the 'SVU' people or with Dick Wolf," he revealed. "I left with zero animosity, but I did leave clearly and open-eyed in going forward and finding new adventures."
Look for Meloni in SVU season 22 as well as the premiere of Organized Crime this fall! In his new show, he'll serve as the head of the Organized Crime division in New York City following a "devastating personal loss," according to NBC.
Organized Crime will air Thursday nights at 10 p.m. on NBC, following SVU at 9 p.m.