SVU Scoop: David Conrad, Kevin Alejandro Among Five Finalists to Replace Chris Meloni

Law & Order: SVU is going younger with its new male lead.

Sources confirm that Dick Wolf and NBC have narrowed the search for an actor to replace departing leading man Chris Meloni to five candidates: David Conrad (Ghost Whisperer), Kevin Alejandro (True Blood, Southland), Michael Raymond-James (Terriers), Danny Pino (Cold Case) and Rhys Coiro (Entourage).

SVU No Longer Looking to Collar Jennifer Love Hewitt

The five gents are being flown to New York where they will test tomorrow opposite returning SVU star Mariska Hargitay.

Mariska Hargitay Laments Chris Meloni’s SVU Exit: ‘I Love Him and Will Miss Him Terribly’

For more details on this story, visit TVLine’s sister site Deadline.com.

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  1. Mike says:

    Screwwwww all of those choices! Go the traditional law and order route and cast an OZ actor. Dean Winters, Lee Tergeson, JK Simmons, or Eamonn Walker.

    • Snsetblaze says:

      My thoughts exactly. I’d love Lee Tergeson to get the role. JK Simmons is already in a series. I’d also be happy to seen an actor from The Wire cast.

  2. Erin says:

    If we can’t have Chris, then Danny or Kevin please?

  3. sophie says:

    Jennifer Love Hewitt won’t be “replacing” Mariska, unfortunatly, but David Conrad might replace Chris Meloni? Is it just me or isn’t it funny that the first 2 people thought to replace the SVU leads where a couple in Ghost Whisperer and could go back to be together if JLH was still in the running for replacing MH and if DC happens to replace CM!
    Turning SVU into GW, not a good idea! Although, I would like to see them together again!

  4. mad sab says:

    Anyone that says Meloni can’t be replaced might as well get over it. He’s done and has already moved on. I’m sure he’s ready to do other things. I love him too but I understand the show needs to get some fresh blood pumped into it, literally. Mariska is essential in choosing which of these guys she will play against. Has to have that chemistry, though it obviously won’t be what she had with Meloni.
    It will be very interesting to see who’s chosen.

    I’m a fan of both Kevin & Michael. They both have an edge that I like which would be interesting for the show. David is ruled out automatically for me because of his too close proximity to Jennifer Love Hewitt; Danny P. is a familiar face who would fit in well with the show overall I think. The Entourage guys I have no clue.

    • HGFM says:

      Since Mariska isn’t going to be anybody’s partner in the second half of the season it doesn’t matter how well she tests with anybody. They need to be casting the new female lead at the same time. That’s the chemistry you need to worry about if you want the show to continue past season 13.

  5. T says:

    I don’t watch SVU as much as I used to. Get Kevin Alejandro and I’ll put it back in my DVR que. I adored him on “Southland” and was so sad his character was killed off. He’s a great actor and super easy on the eyes. Great choice. Leads me to believe that they’ll also go younger with the actress that steps in for Mariska though. Hopefully not since I think Jennifer Beals is a great choice.

  6. Geo says:

    I voted for Kevin Alejandro, but do not wanthim to leave True Blood. Looks like a bad sign for his character this season, though, huh?

  7. Philly's Finest says:

    I bet if they bring in a person like Denzel, the ratings would be off teh chain! He would probably only command what, maybe 1 mill an eposide and I dont think he has any movies lined up…. bring in Denzel!!

  8. Liz says:

    Kevin Alejandro? But what about the character of Jesus on True Blood?!

  9. Jenn f says:

    Chris Meloni is probably gonna kill the whole show! I want him to stay! But maybe Danny Pino could give it a shot

  10. Géraldine says:

    Well, I’d say David Conrad (‘Ghost Whisperer’) or Danny Pino (‘Cold Case’) with a little preference for Pino, who was good especially in very emotional scenes when he played in Cold Case.

    As for Hargitay’s replacement after 13 episodes, Jennifer Beals would an excellent choice especially since the end of Chicago Code where she played a strong boss with a quite troubled personal life.

    And for the ADA, why not a return of Casey Novak/Diane Neal, as seeing as she can practice law again OR better, Alex Cabot/Stephanie March!

  11. raiza says:

    My only choice is Chris Meloni. But I will keep watching until Marishka leaves. The show wont be the same after the main two actors are gone.

  12. Mandy says:

    Kevin Alejandro or Rhys Coiro are my picks.
    I would love to see Alejandro on my TV again every week. I have missed him since his characters death on Southland.

  13. Emily says:

    What does it matter? No one’s gonna be watching SVU without Meloni anyway.

  14. Todd says:

    Seeing Michael Raymond-James on that list reminds me how much I miss Terriers. :(

  15. Susola says:

    Kevin Alejandro is the only actor who, if he takes Chris Meloni’s place, will definitely make me forget Eliot Stabler!!! After he was killed off in Southland, I’ve missed Alejandro and wished that he would find a place on a show I watch regularly. Go Kevin!!!

  16. Susola says:

    Michael Raymond-James is a close second. Funny how both he and Kevin Alejandro were on True Blood!

  17. Sabine says:

    would it be totally crazy to ask for wentworth millers character to come back? that would be interesting too and his story line isn’t resolved yet

  18. Deena says:

    Shot in the dark but does anyone remember when broadway actor Craig Bierko teamed up with Mariska for an episode? I thought they worked really well together and there was a good vibe between them. Plus he was a pretty tough cop. I don’t think they should put a Stabler carbon copy in there but he was the only outsider I liked seeing her work with. I am still trying to decide if I am going to watch SVU without Stabler anyway…

  19. spikesgrl says:

    David Conrad NEEDS to be on a tv show. I don’t watch SVU but I would if he were on it. I would watch that man read the phone book!!

  20. Michelle says:

    Of course Meloni can’t be replaced. That said, someone new can come in and create their OWN character. As for who that someone new should be? David Conrad, hands down. He’s a fantastic actor – GW didn’t showcase his acting chops at ALL. He did a great job on CSI Miami, and he is a wonderful theater actor as well (Burn This being a particular favorite of mine). The man can do gritty; I just hope they give him the chance.

  21. zoot says:

    Didn’t they already say Jennifer Love Hewitt was coming on? How could they hire David Conrad? BOTH from Ghost Whisperer..it just would seem weird

    • HGFM says:

      If you had read the article you would have seen they dropped the idea of Jennifer Love Hewitt being on the show.

      • HGFM says:

        Sorry. That was a different article. However Jennifer Love Hewitt is still no longer being considered for a regular role on SVU.

  22. Kelly says:

    I love David Conrad but if they pick him will they still have Jennifer Love Hewitt on the show?

  23. kate'shomesick13 says:

    I actually think that this is a great pool of actors to chose from. I don’t know the work of Coiro and Raymond-James but Danny Pino has done a fabulous job on Cold Case, David Conrad is able to play very ambiguous characters (Roswell and Ghost whisperer) and Kevin Alejandro was just as tremendous on Southland as the rest of his castmates. I’d be lucky with any one of those.

  24. melly says:

    I say put all five guys in a brand new show and I’ll watch that!

  25. Megan says:

    I’d love for Michael to get it. He just played the bad guy in what I think was the second to last episode of this season (if not the last). However they can cut his hair and dress him up and most won’t even notice. I agree that he’d bring more personality, and more of the “am I decent or am I a rule breaker?” to that partner role like stabler did.

  26. Cash Figueroa says:


  27. erin flynm says:


  28. Arsen Vasquez says:

    Kevin Alejandro all the way! He is super talented!

  29. Juliet Lomas says:

    Kevin Alejandro is the sexiest man alive I wld vote 4 him 2 be president!

  30. zacharyjm says:

    I’m for David to be cast as CM’s replacement, followed by Danny, then Kevin.

  31. marley says:

    i think that mariska and chris are the show, without one there isnt the other that chemistry they have are non replaceable .,i honestly dont know what dick wolf is thinking.he cant expect to have svu without mariska AND chris. i youst to think the worst thing they could do was cancel the show and now i kinda think that that is the best thing they could do while their ahead so they dont completely ruin it.,he cant expect it to do better then it has over the past 12 seasons their IS a reason it has lasted so long i think the other guys are wonderful actors and are so great at what they have played on but they cant replace someone who has been on the show the whole time

  32. AS says:

    Kevin Alijandro

  33. Brandon says:

    I want them to bring Erik Palladino back to be Benson’s new partner. He played a detective a few years ago and is closer in age to Benson, but this might not be that big of a deal since Benson is scaling back her replacement will probably be younger as well.

  34. Kerry Bailey says:

    It would be great to see Kevin Alejandro in another lead role. His time has come!

  35. karen says:

    i think david conrad hes perfect beside he even look like meloni!!

  36. Lisa says:

    I loved Chris Meloni so the only way that I will watch it again is if that beautiful Kevin Alejandro gets the job. He is soooo gorgeous! I loved him on Southland and was really upset that he got killed off because of True Blood. He should be named the sexiest man of 2011. OMG!

  37. Coffy says:

    If there’s no Meloni, there’s no SVU. Elliot and Olivia ARE SVU, they can’t be replaced. I won’t be watching.

  38. Inday Penaloza says:

    Kevin Alejandro is my choice. He is a very good actor and he would be an excellent addition to the cast. I have seen the other candidate in other shows but my choice is Kevin Alejandro
    to replace Chris Meloni.

  39. Coco says:

    Nooooooo totally not fair to replace Christopher Meloniii!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  40. Brandi says:

    I would absolutely watch if David Conrad was on. I love, love, love him!

  41. Samantha says:

    I want Kevin A. to stay in True Blood, PLEASE!!!

  42. gloria says:

    They definitely need a younger actor with hair. The Bald Eagle was so unappealing to look at.

  43. Maxgo66 says:

    I think that Kevin Alejandro for sure is the BEST actor!I’m so glad somebody else feels this way.he was funny to boot! Oh, and he’s sexy in a way that’s unexpected. He’s got ‘it’, and his acting is amazing. More people need to discover this actor and I truly hope that he can get an opportunity like being on this show.OMG! Kevin Alejandro would be awesome! He was FREAKING AMAZING in Southland and I was devastated to see him leave that show. I love him on True Blood as Jesus too, so that would be my only reason why I wouldn’t want him to be cast in SVU.
    But I’ll still miss Christopher Meloni.