'Law & Order: SVU' Boss Warren Leight Fills in the Blanks on Season 21

Ileane Rudolph
Fall Preview Virginia Sherwood/NBC

We put together a questionnaire for Law & Order: SVU showrunner Warren Leight, who filled in the blanks with details from the upcoming season. Enjoy!

Our record-breaking 21st season is going to be especially exciting for fans who like change and growth. You're probably wondering who the new ADA will be, but you'll have to watch the first minute and then the rest of the season to find out. Hint: No one can fully replace Barba (Raúl Esparza) or Stone (Philip Winchester), so the workload may be spread out over more than one DA. As a prosecutor, one of these new characters likes to do things abruptly.

How does the squad feel about the change? NYPD Lt. Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay) is irked. Sgt. "Fin" Tutuola (Ice T) is chill. Det. Amanda Rollins (Kelli Giddish) is confounded. And Det. Sonny Carisi (Peter Scanavino) is caught between a rock and a hard place.

But there's work to be done, and Benson has her hands full with the politically charged case of a high-powered media mogul — played by the cunning Ian McShane (Deadwood) — a serial predator who has never been held accountable. (You know he's a bad guy because he is the guest star of the show!)

(Virginia Sherwood/NBC)

The next episode focuses on trauma-informed interview techniques, with Modern Family's heartbreaking Ariel Winter guest starring as a rape survivor. This story intrigued us because memories once thought lost turn out to be accessible through this revolutionary technique, and learning it requires our detectives to recall past traumas of their own.

And early on, we'll bring back some faces our viewers respect and admire. They include Peter Gallagher as the Gibraltar-like Deputy Chief William Dodds and Hargitay's real-life husband, Peter Hermann — who's a real empath, by the way — as child advocate lawyer Trevor Langan.

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Law & Order: SVU, Season 21 Premiere, Thursday, September 26, 10/9c, NBC