While covering the 2022 NBCUniversal Upfront Red Carpet, I had the chance to interview the amazing Christopher Meloni about all things NBC’s Law & Order: Organized Crime and the character of Elliot Stabler. The series will return for a third season in Fall 2022 on Thursdays at 10 PM ET.
Created by Emmy Award-winning producer Dick Wolf, Law & Order: Organized Crime follows the detectives of the Organized Crime Control Bureau as they work to dismantle New York City’s most vicious and violent illegal enterprises. Christopher Meloni stars as Det. Elliot Stabler, who returns to the NYPD after a decade away and must rebuild his life after a devastating personal loss. Meloni first played the role as an original cast member on Law & Order: SVU.
We discussed expanding the Law & Order universe with Organized Crime, the love fans have for the character of Elliot Stabler, filming in New York, and more! Keep reading for everything he shared.
I love the show and I love your character. What do you enjoy most about expanding on the Law & Order universe with Organized Crime?
Christopher Meloni: I like the serialized nature of the storytelling. It gives us a little more operating room to dig into relationships and dig into the story, it’s as simple as that. I just really enjoy living that kind of storytelling.
What do you love most about filming the series in New York?
Filming here turns it into a small town, everyone knows you. Literally, it’s like, “Hey,” “Hey!” It’s not an ego thing or a trip thing, it’s like, “Oh, hey, I love the show,” “Great!” You go into the local hardware store, “Hi, Bob. Hi, Jim.”
How much fun is it to see the fan response and love to not only having you back but the big Law & Order crossover episodes? I mean, I experience it with my own family, especially when you returned.
I mean, you walk around, you go… the feelings are real and deep, the sadness of you having left was real and deep, and your return is celebrated, but a little like, “ehhh.” I mean, it’s all so human, all so real, and very heartwarming and appreciated. It’s not lost on me.
Do you have any favorite filming memories you can share? I know that’s probably a hard question because there’s so many.
Yeah, it’s so difficult and I’ll say it’s difficult because of this: it’s great to wake up every day and have a challenge because it is. You’re going there to fix things, it’s a rare day where you’re like, “Oh, the scene is perfect. Everything’s perfect.” You’re always just fixing, tinkering, and that’s it. So that takes all your energy and that’s interesting. But the crew, and I feel it’s reciprocated, it really is just a great atmosphere to go, and try and create in with these people. Then you get to work with the people and you get the great guest stars. Everything about it is just really…
Every day is a favorite memory. That’s the best type of experience.
Yeah, and it really is. It’s kinda rare.
You’ve obviously played the character of Elliot for a while so I wanted to ask, has he taught you anything that you’ve applied in your own life?
No, I’ll say this, I think there’s been a lot of cross-pollinating, we’ve fed each other. There are personal things in my life that get addressed or get dealt with, I guess, in a way on the show and vice versa. I was just saying to someone, because this just hit me recently, that Ellen has, for me, to me, turned into a surrogate mother in certain respects and I never thought that would happen, but it really is. I lost my mother five years ago and I just find myself going, “Oh, I miss my mother.”
Lastly, any dream storylines you’re hoping to see tackled on the show?
Oh, no, I just pitch the big picture. The undercover one, I pitched that and they loved it, but if you’d asked me that back then I would have said that because it was intentional. I felt that Elliott thought he had addressed his issue, the trauma, but I thought it’d be very interesting for him to go undercover to run away. He thinks he’s doing his job, it’s like, no dude, you’re running away from — you’re going to be Eddie Ashes so you don’t have to be Elliot Stabler.