“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” is saying goodbye to a longtime cast member.
On Wednesday, Kelli Giddish announced that she will be leaving the drama in the middle of its upcoming 24th season.
The actress, who plays Detective Amanda Rollins on the show, first joined in season 13 in 2011, continued her run for an impressive 12 seasons. She also appeared as a guest star on the sister spin-off “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”.
“I wanted to address the chatter I’ve seen online and let everyone know that this will, indeed, be my last season on Law & Order: SVU,” Giddish said in a statement to Deadline.
“Playing Rollins has been one of the greatest joys and privileges of my life. I’ve been so fortunate to be a part of the Law & Order family for the last 12 years,” she continued. “There is simply no other character on TV like Rollins. She’s grown and changed, and I have as well. I started on this show when I was in my late 20s and I’m grateful I got to spend so many of my adult years with Rollins in my life.”
Finally, Giddish added, “I want to thank Dick Wolf, Mariska Hargitay, Peter Jankowski, NBC, Universal Television, all of my co-stars, every single member on the crew and all the writers here for our incredible work together these last 12 years. I’m so excited to take all the things I have learned in my time on ‘SVU’ and put them toward everything that’s next to come.”
Fans of Giddish did not take kindly to the news of her departure, and “SVU” showrunner David Graziano responded to angry comments in a comment of his own.
“You might take a moment to entertain the idea that things are more complex than they appear in a world of emojis and tweets,” he wrote, as reported by TVLine. “All I’ll say is Kelli has handled this with the most incredibly classy comportment. She is, without a doubt, one of the finest industry professionals I’ve come across in my 24 years of writing television. I’m saddened by her looming exit. It’ll be my lucky day if I ever get to write for her again.”
The new season of “Law & Order: SVU” premieres Sept. 22 in a massive crossover event with “Law & Order” and “Law & Order: Organized Crime”.