Law & Order: SVU was renewed for a record-breaking 21st season by NBC earlier today, but one cast member has confirmed they will not be staying with the show beyond the current season.
Philip Winchester took to Twitter shortly after the renewal news broke to reveal that he is departing ahead of Law & Order: SVU Season 21.
"Sadly for me, Peter stone and his 'the facts don’t care about you’re feelings' attitude will not be returning," the actor's short, but sweet statement reads.
"A huge tip of the hat to my amazing fans and not so big of fans. You ALL make me work harder. Thank you! See you on the next adventure."
Winchester first played Peter Stone on three episodes of Chicago P.D.
He went on to appear as a series regular on NBC's one-and-done Chicago Justice. He made an appearance on Chicago Med before boarding SVU in 2018.
Law & Order's renewal for Season 21 is a big deal. The series will surpass its parent series, Law & Order and Gunsmoke to become the longest-running primetime live-action series in television history.
Not many shows reach that milestone, and it shows that the series remains a solid option in the ratings.
Season to date, Law & Order: SVU is averaging 7.6 million total viewers and a 1.9 rating in the demo, helping NBC tower above the competition in the Thursday 10/9c slot.
“I’m deeply proud to be a part of this groundbreaking show, and humbled to make television history today,” Mariska Hargitay said in a statement of the renewal.
“The longevity and continued success of SVU is a testament not only to the show’s powerful storytelling and ability to connect with viewers, but to its necessity. We have told important stories for 20 years, and we will continue to tell them.”
“As SVU moves into its third decade, Mariska has become an iconic figure as a star, advocate and crusader for women,” said Dick Wolf.
“She is an enduring champion of the movement to end sexual violence, and dozens of episodes have dealt with the very same issues that have shifted into the spotlight in this country in the past two years. Mariska is a delight as No. 1 on the call sheet and, to me, a true friend.”
What are your thoughts on this big exit?
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Remember you can watch Law & Order: SVU online right here via TV Fanatic.
Law & Order: SVU airs Thursdays on NBC.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.