Law and Order: NBC teases crossover premiere event

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The midseason finale of the 24th instalment of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit proved to be absolutely devastating for fans who were forced to say goodbye to beloved detective Amanda Rollins (played by Kelli Giddish). Her long-standing co-star Mariska Hargitay was just as emotional by her exit from the NBC hit and has taken to Instagram with a heartbreaking tribute.

Olivia Benson star Mariska has touched SVU fans with a sweet social media post dedicated to Kelli’s time on the series.

Kelli began portraying Detective Rollins in the Law and Order spin-off’s 13th season and has since appeared in over 200 episodes as part of the main cast.

On Friday morning, Mariska and fans were still recovering from Rollins’ emotional departure as she married Dominick Carisi (Peter Scanavino) in the winter finale, And a Trauma in a Pear Tree.

She posted a typed tribute to her co-star in her latest Instagram update, and captioned the post: “#RolliviaForever.”

“Kelli, I’ve loved acting, learning, growing, talking, laughing and crying with you,” she wrote.

“I’ve loved watching your achingly beautiful performances. I’ve loved watching our friendship deepen and grow and blossom.

“I’ve loved every single minute of it, and I will miss you so much. You have my respect, my gratitude and my love forever.”

After beginning the winter finale with Rollins and Carisi’s wedding, she eventually confides to Benson about a job offer to teach in Fordham and tearfully says her farewells.

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A post shared by Mariska Hargitay (@therealmariskahargitay)

Mariska’s followers were clearly touched by the actress’s tribute, with many taking to the comments to send their own messages of appreciation for Kelli’s long stint on the series.

@kristyaiyannatrujillo replied: “Such a beautiful testament to two women who empowered, empathised and encouraged each other.

“What this world needs to see. I have literally seen every episode of SVU and every partner you have had has moulded you into the Captain you have now become.

“I am in awe of the presence you bring out in Olivia Benson.”

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@belublitz replied: “From the bottom of my heart, thank you for fighting for Rollins to have the ending that we as viewers deserved to see after 12 years. Bless you.”

And @lakeviaward commented: “OMG, I cried my eyes out just a few minutes ago at the end when y’all hugged and said ‘I love you’!

“I knew not only Benson and Amanda said that but YOU and Kelli!

“We will miss your friendship and bond on and off camera! But hopefully she’ll be back!” (sic)

Kelli’s exit from Law and Order has come with its fair share of controversy as leaving the series during SVU’s 24th season was reportedly not her decision.

Her exit was apparently decided when the actress and producers failed to reach a compromise regarding salary negotiations.

However, David Graziano later assured fans Kelli’s departure was amicable and added he would be “lucky” to get the chance to write for her again.

Law and Order: Special Victims Unit returns in 2023 on NBC in the USA. A UK release date is yet to be announced.

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