While the detectives at Law & Order: Los Angeles won’t be returning due to that show’s cancellation, one Law & Order: Special Victims Unit actor is leaving his post by choice. On Tuesday, Entertainment Weekly reported that Christopher Meloni, who plays Detective Elliot Stabler on SVU, won’t be back for the drama’s 13th season next fall.
As one industry source notes, despite being offered a “generous” salary to stay for one more year, Meloni is leaving behind the show he’s been with since it began in 1999. The actor’s absence won’t be the only change SVU’s 8 million viewers will notice come next September, as co-star Mariska Hargitay reportedly wants less screen time after adopting a child last month.
It’s not yet known who will replace Meloni on the show, but one name being thrown around as a potential Hargitay stand-in is Jennifer Love Hewitt. The former Ghost Whisperer star “is someone we’ve been circling,” according to NBC President Robert Greenblatt. “I don’t know whether that’s coming to pass or not.”