Law & Order: SVU Scoop: Danny Pino, Kelli Giddish Cop Series Regular Roles

Law & Order: SVU – The Next Generation” is taking shape, with the news that Danny Pino (Cold Case) and Kelli Giddish (Chase) are both boarding the NBC crime drama as series regulars.

Pino was just last week mentioned as among the show’s short list to fill the void left by Chris Meloni, who did not ink a new deal to return to the series. On CBS’ Cold Case, he for seven seasons played Senior Detective Scotty Valens.

SVU No Longer Looking to Collar Jennifer Love Hewitt

Giddish, meanwhile, will take on the role once mentioned in the same breath as Jennifer Love Hewitt, as a new lady cop picking up the slack when Mariska Hargitay scales down her workload come midseason. In addition to her runs on NBC’s Chase and before that Fox’s Past Life, Giddish recently guested on The Good Wife.

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

“I’m very pleased that we have two amazing actors joining the cast,” L&Overlord Dick Wolf said in a statement. “I know this combination will give us the opportunity to explore the world of SVU with new eyes.”

Says NBC entertainment boss Robert Greenblatt, “Kelli and Danny are two great actors who will join a proven cast headed by Mariska Hargitay as this exceptional series heads into a very promising 13th season.”

But what do you say, SVU faithful? Are you excited by either or both of these castings?

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114 Comments
  1. FeFe says:

    I can live with this casting. I like both of these actors, I just hope they fit into the scheme of the show. I’ll be watching.

    • flutiefan says:

      EXACTLY what i was thinking!

    • Rachael says:

      Right on!

    • Barb says:

      Loved Danny on Cold Case…..will give Giddish a chance…

    • NickC says:

      YUCK!…safe and dull…Chris Meloni would not get this job today because he is different and interseting.There was a few guys on the list that would have given the show a new edge..i mean this guy was just playing a cop on cold case and she was on that Chase show…Dick Wolf has a great name but makes some stupid choices.

      • Eva says:

        Pino may have last played a cop but he also played a pretty vicious gang leader on The Shield so he does have some depth.

        • Tego Livi says:

          No criticism of Danny Pino as an actor, but his character on Cold Case was pretty boring. I haven’t watched SVU in many years, but I might give it a try with the new cast if nothing else is on.

  2. Justme_88 says:

    Not sure if I’ll keep watching.. Chris and Mariska where and are the heart & soul of SVU..

    • Tabatha says:

      No I will not, Christopher and Mariska were the best, they should not be replaced in my opinion.

      • ashley ceaser says:

        I agree….i love meloni!!!!! been in love with him since i started watching

      • Russ says:

        I think they should have explored more areas with Meloni and Marishka.They could have done so many different things with their characters.Explored many more subjects and content.Meloni needs to be on L&O somewhere he gives his character depth and dimensions that are just like real life.

    • tahina says:

      Same here. I love Chris and Mariska’s chemistry one of the main reason I tuned in every week, even reruns on USA. I guess they want to go with the franchise until year 3,000!

  3. Jenny says:

    I actually like both of those castings. I may stick around yet…

  4. Genny says:

    Kelli Giddish has been the lead on two shows in the last year and a half …. both were cancelled. Last being “Chase” (on NBC). She’s s show killer, so good luck w her. Just keep her away from my faves shows.

    • dougmac says:

      Giddish was the best part of Chase, and it was a better show than it got credit for. It was better than any Dick Wolf show has been for years

    • Eli says:

      Let’s not forget that she was on All My Children. Also got canceled! This lady may be a good actress but darn she IS a show killer!

      • Kay says:

        First of all she hasn’t been on AMC in a Long time so you can’t blame her for that one. Second, you can’t blame her for Chase either. She was good but the writing SUCKED! Really, I haven’t seen writing that bad in a long time. I actually kept watching the show because of her.

      • dan says:

        Her character on AMC, Di Henry, was killed by Crazy Annie a few years ago. The storyline sucked but Kelly (as Di) and Melissa Claire Egan (as Annie) were awesome. She had nothing to do with AMC’s cancellation. Blame that all on TPTB at ABC (I’m looking at you Frons) who gave Chuck Pratt the job of dismantling the history and consistency of the show, then gave the final death blows to the two writers who also destroyed Guiding Light.

  5. Smidnite says:

    I’ve missed Danny since Cold Case went off the air.

  6. kyle says:

    i was secretly wishing kelli giddish was going to stay on the good wife…

  7. diana says:

    UGH, why is Kelli Giddish even being considered for this? She’s fine. JUST fine. Totally one-dimensional and should be in soaps or something. She was bad on “Chase” (what I could bear to watch), bad on “The Good Wife”. Now SVU?? Oh no!!!
    Never seen Pino. Can’t say a thing about that.

  8. ft says:

    im glad meloni is out of this mess. and hes on a bigger project now. superman

  9. Nina says:

    I’m not sure I’ll keep watching either. Mariska for me was one of the highest points of the show and Chris just made it that much better. Sad to see them leave. :(

  10. Colleen says:

    No, I’m pretty sure bad really bad writing killed Chase LONG before Kelli was cast.

    I think the pairing has some potential on the show.

  11. tj says:

    Heck yes for Danny Pino, I have really missed him! Not so happy about Kelli Giddish….What happened to Katie Sachhoff?(spelling)

  12. I LOVE SVU says:

    No, I will not watch. This show is going downhill and fast. They should just give us a closer with both Chris Meloni and Mariska Hargitay because no one will like the new show. You can’t lose them both; not after 12 years. SVU was way too good of a show for some BS season 13 ending and lets face it, we all know season 13 will be the end. I feel bad for the new actors because this show will tank and fast. Not a good career move on thier part. I know this is mean, but I’m only being honest. Give Chris Meloni what he wants and save the show.

  13. Micah says:

    No one can replace the intensity and sexiness of Chris Meloni, but I like Kelli Giddish. She was amazing a few years ago on All My Children.

  14. molly says:

    As crushed as I am that Benson & Stabler are being phased down/out and leaving (respectively) I like both these actors enough to at least give next season a chance. I think that Chase was cancelled unjustly, and particularly like Giddish, so I’m interested to see what they do with her. Yes, SVU will never be the same, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the show is dead and gone.

  15. Tracy says:

    I really like Danny Pino and Kelli Giddish. These are good choices if/when Mariska decides to join Meloni. Heck, it might be the kick in the pants SVU needs.

  16. Deena says:

    Maybe I’ll give Danny Pino a chance but I think once Mariska scales back I’m outta there. So sad, my favorite show for so long :(

  17. Sabrina says:

    I am still torn. I LOVE the show, but I think it works best with Chris and Mariska. And I don’t like that there will be no closure to Benson and Stabler. But like I said, I LOVE the show so I might have to give it a chance… but it just won’t be the same.

    It’s just amazing that when you think about it… these two characters have been a part of our lives for TWELVE years!! Holy smokes. They had a good run which is why I wish and hope there will be some closure to them :)

  18. Aurore says:

    I have nothing against the actors but I think I will pass.
    They might be good but not enough that I would stick around after loosing Stabler and Benson.

  19. Ryan says:

    I’ve never been a big SVU fan but I don’t get why Ice-T and Richard Belzer aren’t finally being given a chance to take more center stage.

    • HGFM says:

      Because Ice T has limited acting skills and Belzer is too old to go running around the streets of New York anymore. Hopefully we will see more Munch even if he has to stay in the squad room.

  20. Sivat says:

    I don’t think Hargitay will be back for Season 14. I think the fourteenth season will be this show’s last.

  21. Riven says:

    Nope. I’m out. They should have importanted Matt Devlin aka Jamie Bamber from L&O:UK. Would have made it interesting.

    But really I’ve just been looking for an excuse to cut the cord.

  22. Kendra says:

    Yeah, with Chris and Mariska gone I probably won’t be watching…

  23. xfool92 says:

    Not impressed AT ALL. Pino was a cold fish on Cold Case, and Giddish wasn’t good enough to save Chase. Bad choices.

  24. Liz says:

    Wow, well, so long SVU. It was good while it lasted, but to think that ANYONE could replace Chris and Mariska is stupidity, especially these two lame actors.

    • Jen says:

      Liz here said it best. Mariska and Chris are the show to me. It’s not the actors that killed it, it was the crappy writing and the fact the studios didn’t want to compromise and pay Chris what he deserved. I’ll watch any and all eps with MH in them, but anyone else…forget it. Watch the viewership decrease when she’s not on….

  25. Camilla says:

    I like Danny Pino but the show won’t be the same without Chris Meloni

    • Marta says:

      I like Danny too – just that what I saw him on (Cold Case), his character had the least amount of depth. Maybe it was the writing. I want to be nice about Kelli but I find her boring. Each time they announce that she is going to play the lead on a show, I just know it is not going to make it. A little too vanilla for an emotional show.

      Was Munch canned? Have not seen Richard Belzer on air lately. I love his cynicism and he and Ice-T have good chemistry as partners.

  26. jimmy says:

    i hated this show and rarely watched it,cant stand mariska. i do however like kelli and i will definatly give it a look

  27. Rob says:

    They better be good, or I will not be happy. And no one likes an unhappy black man.

  28. Kat says:

    I would have preferred David Conrad but I can live with Danny Pino. I’m not happy with the choice of Kelli Giddish. I probably will not watch anymore.

  29. ANoun says:

    Please find something lasting for Kelli Giddish. She’s good and she deserves it. I hope this is it.

  30. Holly says:

    Gah. Kelli Giddish? Really? She’s so… flat. I’m sure she’s a lovely person but she just does not spark on screen. Chase was awful, mostly because of the writing, but she didn’t help matters. Danny Pino — eh. David Conrad would have been better.

  31. Cece says:

    Honestly SVU has become a “I watch out of habit” show.
    This show isn’t a fraction of what it used to be .. so whatever!

  32. jan says:

    Great casting! I like them both and I think they’ll be good together. Kelli is a MUCH better choice than JLH. And Pino will be just fine. I was growing weary of Meloni’s character, so I’m looking forward to a change. Well done, NBC!

  33. Andrew says:

    How could they pick Danny Pino over David Conrad? Total let down, although I thought he did well on Cold Case anyway.

    They totally dropped the ball on the female lead, though. I would’ve gone with someone like Elizabeth Mitchell.

    David Conrad and Elizabeth Mitchell would’ve been so much better as leads.

    Oh well.

    • Cade Duel says:

      Anyone who thinks Danny Pino was not impressive on Cold Case should check out his portrayal of Armadillo Quintero on the 2nd season of the Shield. He was so good, it was scary.

  34. Level says:

    I smell a cancellation..

  35. deb saine says:

    danny yes … chase person no … i hope that they give stabler a proper send off!!!

  36. z says:

    Any chance Pino will come in as Scotty Valens??

  37. HGFM says:

    It doesn’t matter who they cast if the writing doesn’t improve drastically. SVU has not had any luck in developing new characters in years. If the new detectives are as badly done as Chester Lake and the string of ADAs who could last even a full season, the show is dead.

    • Kris says:

      From what I heard Warren Leight the new guy who took over for Neal Baer as show runner fired ALL the SVU writers and hired new ones. So that could help give some depth and life to the stories this season. Although I think with less Mariska and No Meloni they should bring back Diane Neal as ADA Casey Novak and counter balance all the new people coming on with a fan favorite. It would be nice to have a soild ADA again AND a familiar face amoung all the new ones.

      • HGFM says:

        Unfortunately the writers had turned Novak into a really bad lawyer joke before she left. The same thing happened with the return of Cabot. I don’t see the return of a strong ADA presence on the show.

        • Kris says:

          Thats true but with all new writers for SVU they would have a chance to really bring the Novak character back to the way she was.

          • HGFM says:

            The problem with that is Novak was never a good lawyer. The new writers need to create an ADA who knows the law, knows how to try a case and knows how to work with the detectives to make sure there is a case to bring to court.

  38. VoiceOfReason says:

    The reality, which Mariska/Chris loyalists won’t want to hear is that the ratings have been in steady decline the last few years. In other words, the current cast, albeit with weaker writing than past years, wasn’t justifying their monster contracts anymore, and if the show is gonna go out, why not try some changes. I have no idea if i will like the new cast, i will certainly check it out. If ever SVU made a mistake though, it was holding on too long to a single main detective team…they made the monster, but can they recreate it? In the end, SVU is on borrowed time either way, but perhaps this way, they develop new fans and get an extra season or two, if Meloni/Hargitay stayed, it would have just faded til the only ones left were the ones watching for that sad moment where the writing failed so badly that all they had left was a brief moment of romance…and then the shark would have been jumped. The original cast wasnt gonna make new fans, and this new incarnation may not either…but it’s an interesting experiment none the less….

    • lOvE svu forever and always says:

      Well, you’re certainly the minority here. I’ll admit that the writing has been extremely crappy the last couple of years but Mariska and Chris have been the reason SVU was able to stay afloat. After 12 years of them leading the show, they have become the heart and soul of SVU, whether you believe it or not. I have no doubt the show will completely fail once Mariska is gone for good. I will forever love SVU and EO, but it just won’t be SVU anymore.

  39. TV Gord says:

    I’ve never been able to get into the L&Os, but I think teaming Pino and Giddish is inspired, and I will check them out this fall. Pino’s been gone from our screens too long and as for Giddish’s sad record of cancellations, I think many of us can come up with a long list of actors who had a string of duds before finding the right show for them. Negative Nellies. Crazy Internet People. ;-)

  40. toast says:

    Let’s be honest, the REAL stars of SVU are Fin & Munch. I’m so sick of seeing Benson/Stabler on my television that I’m glad to see some new faces hit the screen. I just hope they kill off Stabler, since it would make for some very compelling television (far more compelling than the other two cop deaths in the L&O universe).

    Now I’ll sit back and idly hope for more Fin & Munch on SVU.

  41. Emily says:

    Some irrational part of me was still wishing and hoping that they would be able to get Chris back for next season, but I guess all hope is lost now. I have no knowledge of either of the new actors, but the new guy is cute… for what it’s worth. I’ll be watching the premiere of season 13 just to see how Stabler is written out. If it’s a good storyline, I might continue past that. If not, I’ll be sticking to the Tuesday rerun marathons on USA.

  42. Josie says:

    I stopped watching SVU a few years ago because I got tired of Benson (mostly) and Stabler as the center of the storyline all the time. With the additional cast, I am interested in watching again. Maybe the show will be interesting again.

  43. Miffy says:

    It should have been Jennifer Love Hewitt and David Conrad. Still, the show needs some new blood, and this will probably do it. Smart move, NBC.

    • Kylie says:

      Jennifer Love Hewitt? Really?! What are you smoking?

      • Miffy says:

        Get lost, you fat smelly cvnt. Everyone hates you.

        • Miffy is a fat, smelly c*nt says:

          Haha, that’s funny! I’d like to see a picture of your fat ass. LOL. It’s kinda sad that you’re the only one who responded to my post, yet according to you, everybody hates ME. Well anyway, enjoy the rest of your lonely life. I wish you nothing but bad luck! :)

  44. Blake says:

    I like Kelli. I’ve been following her since her days on AMC where I thought she did a fine job.

  45. Ash says:

    No I will not watch. Mariska and Chris means so much to show and Mariska touched so many lives in this including me so no it will never be the same :(

  46. Ella says:

    I am so excited abou Danny Pino!

  47. Becky says:

    I never watched Cold Case so am not familiar with Danny Pino. I only watched two episodes of Chase, but found Kelli Giddish’s acting fine, but the writing poor. Like many I was disappointed with the news of Chris Meloni not returning, but he left. Maybe it was all about not coming to agreement over money or maybe it was more, but he is gone regardless.
    Olivia Benson has always been my favorite character on the show, but definitely not the only character or reason I like the show. I am definitely willing to tune in for Season 13 and see what new showrunner Warren Leight has in store and to see what Giddish and Pino can bring to it as well—-not to mention the new writers. Have enjoyed Hargitay and Meloni together for 12 years, but I don’t want the show to fail because Meloni left and Hargitay will have a reduced role. I want it to succeed with good writing and good acting even if it will certainly be different because of the cast changes. Would much prefer to still have a good show to watch, then to see another reality show replace good drama.

  48. Tiffany says:

    I’m pretty happy with the Kelli Giddish casting. I was bummed when Chase got cancelled.

    • Kai says:

      I was bummed too!
      I really like Kelli and I’m glad to see her getting a series regular role on one of my all time favorite shows.

      I kept saying I will not watch once Mariska and Chris were both gone, but now that Kelli and Danny will be on, if it’s good I’ll keep watching.

      I loved Cold Case and Chase. I think it will be good. And I think they will have great chemistry. :)

  49. peace_n_luv says:

    “Promising” my ass! It’s official I’ve lost all hope for SVU. They have a new EP, new actors and new writers – which has been kept pretty hush hush. I mean who are these writers? Are they pod people? The Next Generation is right. And the next generation can have them…for the one season they’ll be lucky to last.

  50. Carrie says:

    Ooh, good choices.

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