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See which Law & Order stars are on the 2021 Emmy ballot

Law & Order
Christopher Meloni and Mariska Hargitay in Law & Order SVU Pic credit: NBC

It’s been a while since Law & Order basked in the glow of an Emmy. But the series is hoping to get back on track this fall. 

As the first voting for the Emmy nominations concludes, fans are hopeful that not only will Mariska Hargitay get a nod for SVU, but Christopher Meloni’s return as Eliott Stabler could earn him an overdue Emmy. 

Law and Order and Emmys

While known for its amazing success as a franchise, Law & Order’s Emmy history has been surprisingly sketchy. 

The mothership series racked up over 50 Emmy nominations, including winning Best Drama Series in 1997. Yet amazingly, it never earned a win for any of its cast. 

SVU hasn’t gained the Best Drama prize, but Mariska Hargitay has earned eight nominations for Leading Actress in a Drama with a win in 2006. Christopher Meloni earned his sole Emmy nomination in the same year but failed to win. 

Now, both series are making a major play in the new Emmy ballot. Any actor can be submitted by the Emmy rules, although the body is notorious for being offbeat at some of their choices. 

SVU is hopeful given its dramatic turns this season with storylines involving the COVID-19 pandemic and the issues of police reform. 

Who’s up in SVU and OC

Law & Order: SVU Season 22 cast
The cast of Law & Order: SVU Season 22. Pic credit: NBC

Not surprisingly, Hargitay is on the ballot for her turn as Benson. This year had Olivia dealing with leading the squad in a difficult time and handling the return of ex-partner Stabler. 

Also in the running in the Supporting Actor categories are Ice-T who plays Finn and dealt with a possible marriage, and Delmore Barnes, who plays Chief Garland and had to handle a backlash over his feelings on the police department’s actions. 

This season also saw the long-simmering tension between Rollins (Kelli Giddish) and Carisi (Peter Scanavino) finally build as Carisi helped Rollins when her father was in the hospital. It culminated in the pair finally kissing in the finale, and both actors are on the ballot.

Finally, while she didn’t get as much meaty material as the rest of the cast, Jamie Gray Hyder is also in the Supporting Actress field as “Kat” Azar Taemin.

Over on Organized Crime, Meloni’s performance as a mourning and intense Stabler has naturally got him noticed for Leading Actor Drama. Also, Dylan McDermott is on the ballot as Eliott’s enemy, mobster Richard Wheatley. 

The Supporting Actress field is packed with the ladies of OC: Danielle Mone Truitt (Eliott’s hard-nosed boss Anyanna Bell), Tamara Taylor (Richard’s conniving ex-wife, Angela), and Ainley Seiger (quirky hacker Jet Slootmaekers).

The guest actor possibilities

Raul Esparaza
Raul Esparaza as Barba on SVU Pic credit: NBC

SVU has seen better Emmy success for its guest star appearances. Ellen Burstyn, Ann-Margaret, Amanda Plummer, Leslie Caron, and Cynthia Nixon have all won Best Guest Appearance by an Actress for their roles on the series.

Thus, there are nominations for some actors for both SVU and OC. Raul Esparza’s return to SVU as Barba, where he faced off against Carisi in court, has him on the ballot. 

Also up is Alex Brightman as an obsessive stalker (“Turn Me On, Take Me Private”); Ethan Cutkosky as a former juvenile offender who goes on a bloody murder spree (“Post-Graduate Psychopath); and Sarita Choudhury as a restaurant owner whose life falls apart over the course of 2020, driving her to extremes (“In The Year We All Fell Down”). 

Over on OC, Chazz Palminteri is on the ballot for his turn as mobster Manfredi Sinatra.

While these names on the ballot are great, it doesn’t mean most, if any, of them will be nominated. The competition for the Emmys is fierce, even with fewer shows submitted this year (due to many series affected by the coronavirus pandemic).

However, given the powerful seasons they both had, it’s possible either SVU or OC may be able to hear their names called out when the nominations are revealed on July 13.

Law & Order SVU and Law & Order: Organized Crime streaming on Hulu and Peacock.

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