Giddish Hargitay Law & Order
Credit: Getty Images

Fans want to know if the former soap star was pushed out of her primetime gig.

There are two mysteries unfolding behind the scenes at NBC’s long-running series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. One is how the character of Amanda Rollins will be written out during the upcoming season of the wildly popular procedural. The other is exactly why portrayer Kelli Giddish — remembered by daytime fans for her sometimes controversial stint as Di Henry — is leaving the show in the first place.

Kelli Giddish Law & Order SVU

“I want to address the chatter I’ve seen online, and let everyone know that this will, indeed, be my last season,” the actress said in an Instagram post on Wednesday. She went on to call playing Rollins for the past 12 years “one of the greatest joys and privileges of my life.”

Certainly this seemed like an open-and-shut case, given how often actors have departed the various branches of the Law & Order franchise. But then rumors began circulating that the decision to leave was not one made by the actress, but rather those further up the proverbial food chain. As angry fans lashed out on Twitter — some using the #NoRollinsNoRatings hashtag to indicate they’d boycott the show unless things changed — incoming showrunner David Graziano suggested cooler heads should prevail.

“You might take a moment to entertain the idea that things are more complex than they appear in a world of emojis and tweets,” he said in the comments section of Giddish’s post. He went on to say that the actress at the heart of the brewing controversy “has handled this with the most incredibly classy comportment.”

All My Children viewers will recall that Giddish’ run on the soap was not necessarily a smooth one. Fans weren’t thrilled at the idea that she’d been brought on as a new Dixie (following the departure of wildly-popular Cady McClain and the character’s presumed death) in 2005. It didn’t help that the actress was the same age as Jacob Young, who played Dixie’s son, JR!

Giddish Young AMC All My CHildren

Eventually, it would be revealed that the Pine Valley newbie was actually Dixie’s half sister, Di Henry. Less than three years after Giddish joined the show, Di would meet her maker after winding up on the wrong end of a gun.

As of yet, there’s no word on how Giddish and Rollins will exit SVU or how far into the season either will appear.

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