Chris Meloni Returns to SVU Universe in Stabler-Centric Spinoff at NBC

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Law & Order: SVU faithful, prepare to get chung-chung!‘d: Christopher Meloni is going to play Elliot Stabler again… in a new series centered on the fan-favorite detective.

Meloni’s Stabler will be the boss in a SVU spinoff set in the organized crime division of the New York City Police Department, our sister site Deadline reports. NBC has given the new show, which hails from prolific executive producer Dick Wolf, a 13-episode Season 1 order.

Meloni left the procedural after negotiations related to his contract broke down at the end of Season 12. When Season 13 started, Stabler had retired from the police force and slipped away without a word; his partner, Olivia Benson, learned the heartbreaking news at the same time that fans did.

Since leaving SVU, Meloni’s TV credits include UndergroundWet Hot American Summer: First Day of CampPoseThe Handmaid’s Tale and Happy!. He also voices the character of Commissioner Gordon in the animated series Harley Quinn.

Last year, TVLine asked current SVU showrunner Warren Leight whether enough time had passed that Meloni might someday make a return to the series he called home for 12 seasons.

With the caveat that the negotiations involved would be “above my pay grade,” Leight said, “Look: I assume that if some year, some decade, couple decades from now, we get to the last SVU, [Meloni] would have to come back before we do the last episode or before the show signs off… However, I don’t think we’re at that point in the show’s run.”

Do you have strong feelings about seeing more Stabler? Hit the comments and let us know!