Christopher Meloni to return for Law & Order: SVU season 22 premiere, showrunner says
Christopher Meloni is coming home.
The actor will make his return as Elliot Stabler on the season 22 premiere of Law & Order: SVU, according to showrunner Warren Leight. Meloni originally starred alongside Mariska Hargitay's Olivia Benson on SVU from the show's first season until the end of season 12.
Speaking on an episode of SVU's behind-the-scenes podcast, Leight said, "It’s pretty clear that Elliot will be in the SVU season opener. I think that much I know."
Leight noted that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it's unclear when the new season will start shooting. Initially, Stabler and his family were set to reappear at the end of season 21, but according to Leight those plans got scrapped when the season was cut short by the coronavirus crisis. On the podcast, he said he wasn't sure if Stabler's wife and son would still appear on the show. "Whether we'll get to see his family as well remains to be seen," he said.
The news comes after it was announced in March that Meloni's character would be returning for a new spin-off series, a 13-episode drama that is said to revolve around Stabler leading an NYPD organized crime unit. Not much else is known about the new series, though Chicago P.D.'s Matt Olmstead is reportedly being eyed to write and showrun.