Law and Order: SVU Loses Capt. Cragen? Dann Florek Heads To Retirement
By Staff Writer | December 12, 2013 08:14 AM EST
Capt. Cragen is finally leaving the force after more than 400 episodes and over a span of 14 years of the "Law & Order" franchise. Actor Dann Florek himself revealed that he's leaving "Law & Order: SVU" in a Twitter post on Dec, 10: "Friday was the last day 4 Cragen/Florek. It was a sweet send off! But he'll live on in syndication land 4 evah!"
The show's producer Warren Leight earlier told TV Guide that although Florek's character already developed a following for being tough yet fair boss, they felt that they need to stay true to protocols in real life.
The producer said that Capt. Cragen has to step down because the police, including the show's setting, the New York Police Department, have a mandatory retirement age of 63.
Leight explained to TV Guide in October: "Cragen knows at some point in the season or by the end of the season, he will have hit mandatory retirement, so he'll have to figure out when that moment is. We're playing that anxiety that the Captain is leaving at some point."
Capt. Cragen is following the path of his former trusted leiutenant, Det. John Munch (played by Richard Belzer), who also hung up his badge in October to join the district attorney's office as a special investigator.
Belzer played Munch for a good two decades from "Homicide," "Law & Order: Trial By Jury" and "The Wire."
True to his character, Capt. Cragen is not stepping down to take another job somewhere as Leight envisions him as a "gone fishing retirement kind of guy." The producer didn't discount the boss showing up sometime in the future "in social situations."
As Leight noted: "He's very close to Olivia [Benson, played by Mariska Hargitay]. "He's close in a mentoring capacity to (Amanda) Rollins (played by Kelli Giddish)."
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