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Law & Order eyeing historic crossover for the fall

Mariska Hargitay guest-stars on Law & Order with Jeffrey Donovan and Anthony Anderson. Pic credit: NBC

Law & Order Thursdays may kick off with a historic crossover event this fall.

TV Line reports that plans are underway for Law & Order, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and Law & Order: Organized Crime to open their fall premieres with a major crossover storyline.

However, the logistics may mean that said crossover could occur later in the fall, as managing it can be challenging.

Law & Order’s crossover history

While they were always linked, it was rather rare for the Law & Order shows to have a full crossover event. 

For the most part, any crossovers occurred with characters from one show appearing in another series. There was also a link of the main District Attorney like Jack McCoy appearing on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. 

There were a few exceptions, such as a story that opened on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit concluding with Law & Order: Trial By Jury. Yet there was never a full-fledged crossover between more than two Law & Order shows.

Since Law & Order: Special Victims Unit became the only series in the franchise, it had a few crossovers with Chicago P.D

That has changed as Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and Law & Order: Organized Crime have had a few team-up episodes, with former partners Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Stabler (Christopher Meloni) reuniting on a special case.

The Law & Order Season 21 finale also had Benson guest-starring to help on a case involving a cop killing. 

Yet this year may see a full crossover of all three series, although the logistics can be tricky. 

Can a Law & Order crossover happen?

Law & Order
Stabler (Christopher Meloni) and Benson (Mariska Hargitay) team up for a new case on a Law & Order crossover. Pic credit: NBC

TV Line broke the reports of NBC hoping to have a Law & Order crossover for the September 22 premieres of the shows. However, the network has yet to confirm or deny this. 

Obviously, Dick Wolf is no stranger to making crossover work. The One Chicago shows regularly have special crossover events that link the shows together.

Likewise, CBS’ FBI series kicked off the 2021 seasons with a major crossover event and some characters appearing in other shows.

However, the logistics of making three shows work together can be complex. A reason why there haven’t been more FBI crossovers is FBI: International shoots on location in Hungary, making it challenging to work in. 

While the three Law & Order shows are set in New York, finding the right case that can link the regular cops, the SVU team and the Organized Crime squad together is a challenge. 

There is great potential to see the various police squads working together and it would obviously be a great way to bring in viewers. 

However, trying to get three shows to work on the same page is complex and it’s possible NBC could decide to hold the story off for later in the season, perhaps during November sweeps.

Law & Order showrunner Rick Eid told Entertainment Tonight in May that there had been talks for a crossover. “Whether it’s the first, second or third episode, I’m not sure.”

While it’s not confirmed yet, the potential for a crossover of the three shows remains high and would be a historical way to kick off the new seasons.

Law & Order Thursdays begins with Law & Order Season 22 Thursday September 22 at 8/7c on NBC.

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