Richard Belzer Switches From Regular to Recurring Status on 'Law and Order: SVU'

Categories: Broadcast TV

Written By

October 10th, 2013

Law and Order: Special Victims Unit

Though he's not leaving the series entirely (for now, at least) Richard Belzer (who plays detective Munch) is being downgraded from series regular to recurring status on Law and Order SVU. According to the synopsis for next week's episode, the character of Detective Munch is retiring.

  • Joey S

    No Surprise he is rarely on in the last 2 seasons and when he is it is only in one or two scenes and he really isn’t given anything to do.

  • nope

    I’ve read that this is because the character of John Munch is owned by somebody, and that person demands a certain royalty each episode the character is used.. so we haven’t seen much of him over the last few seasons.

  • CortexiphanFan

    I’ts probably a creator of “Homicide” in which the character first appeared. No big loss. That character has been stale for YEARS!

  • robert

    sad. I really liked Munch. The only way I could stand Ice-T’s character was when they were together.

  • Ralph Hahn

    I never heard of somebody “owning” a character on TV or in movies, especially if the original and continuing actor is synonmous with that role. BTW, while “Homicide” was on the air, characters from the Law & Order franchise would often guest on the other show. And, while both shows were on NBC, it is two different production companies who own their respective programs.

  • Networkman

    He is probably tired of the character. He has been doing it for the past 20 years. He was with Homicide first. I think there is going to be more changes in store for the show. I think Dan Florek as the Captain may be stepping aside as well. Mariska’s character Olivia may be promoted. That is just the next logical step and then maybe for its final season we will see a new junior detective.

  • Igwell

    Belzer is the owner/creator of Munch. I think Dick Wolf is just slashing costs.

    I never heard of somebody “owning” a character on TV or in movies,

    I have: animated characters, James Bond, and all the wrestling characters Vince McMahon owns.

  • HGFM

    David Simon who wrote the book “Homicide: A Year on the Kiling Streets” is the one who created Detective Munch. He is the owner of the character and does get paid a royalty whenever Munch is used.

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