Smashing Interviews Magazine

Compelling People — Interesting Lives



September 2022



Kelli Giddish Told Us Leaving "SVU" Was "Not an Option"

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Image attributed to Virginia Sherwood

Kelli Giddish

On Instagram, Kelli Giddish announced her exit just a few weeks before the Law & Order: Special Victims Unit season 24 premiere. She thanked the cast and crew and said, “Playing Rollins has been one of the greatest joys and privileges of my life.” But she never cited reasons for her departure.

In an October 2021 interview with Smashing Interviews Magazine, Giddish appeared content to continue playing Detective Amanda Rollins for the foreseeable future. When asked if she had heard the rumors that she would be exiting the series, she answered, “No. I didn’t. But I hope not! I’ve got house payments (laughs). That’s not an option right now. We’re having too much fun.”

“Not that the end is in sight, but I just laugh a lot at work. We crack each other up.”

When questioned specifically about the enjoyment on set and which cast member was the loudest and funniest, Giddish responded, “Oh, Mariska, by far! Oh, God. She’s a ball of energy, and no one could understand how funny that lady is with what is actually portrayed on their TV because Benson’s an empathetic, deeply concerned character. That’s who she is in real life, but the other facet to her personality is that she’s laughing all day every day.”

Many fans of the popular crime drama have lambasted both NBC and Dick Wolf, the creator of the longest running primetime US live-action series, for letting Giddish go after portraying popular character Amanda Rollins for 12 years.

Regardless of how much the SVU faithful are devastated by the loss of the beloved cast member and despite executive producer Mariska Hargitay’s best efforts to fight the decision, it has been reported that the departure was, unfortunately, out of the talented Giddish’s hands.

Season 24 of Law & Order: SVU premieres on September 22, 2022, as a three series crossover event involving Law & Order and Law & Order: Organized Crime. Giddish’s last appearance on SVU will be season 24, episode nine, as confirmed by show runner David Graziano.

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