Ice-T Says People Thank Him For ‘Law & Order: SVU’ Amid 25th Anniversary

Law and Order: Special Victims Unit Ice-T as Detective Odafin 'Fin' Tutuola, (Season 3), 1999-.
NBC/Everett Collection

Law & Order: SVU is celebrating its 25th anniversary. Rapper and actor Ice-T opened up about how it feels to be on the long-running show and how he was originally only supposed to appear in a handful of episodes! He joined the show as Detective Fin Tutuola in the second season and was originally only signed on for four episodes. However, his character was so well-received, that he continued to get screentime and is now the longest-running male actor on television.

Ice-T also revealed why he believes the show continues to do so well and why fans even come up to him and thank him in the street. He explained, “I think SVU is a special show because it’s the first time I’ve ever done something where people walk up in the street and say thank you. And I found out that SVU is as much entertainment as it is therapy for a lot of women because a lot of women that watch the show are survivors — guys too. So it has a different feeling versus just normal entertainment.”

Law and Order: Special Victims Unit Ice-T, Dann Florek, Tamara Tunie, B.D. Wong, Diane Neal, Richard Belzer, Mariska Hargitay, Christopher Meloni, (Season 8), 1999-

Virginia Sherwood/NBC/Everett Collection

One of his co-stars, Kelli Giddish, opened up about why she thinks people love the show. She said at the celebration for the show’s 25th anniversary, “The subject matter is hard for us to talk about, but we present it in a way that has kind of a beginning, a middle and an end, so that gives the audience some kind of resolve and some kind of relief, I think.” She added, “I know, for me, that’s the most rewarding part about being on this show. The interactions I have at the coffee shop where somebody will just come up and say thank you, that means the world. It’s amazing.”

The new season of Law & Order: SVU premieres tonight, January 18, 2024, at 9 p.m. ET on NBC. You can stream older episodes on Peacock or Hulu.

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