In an interview with Today, “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” executive producer Julie Martin said that the crossover event will be a satisfying homecoming for Bensler. “I think what you will certainly see in the movie … is them having a great, great working relationship and falling into that easy partnership … kind of knowing what the other person is thinking,” said Martin. “It’s fun to see them in that capacity again.”
At the end of Season 23, Benson’s therapist and Amanda Rollins (Kelli Giddish) both encouraged her to pursue a romantic relationship with Stabler. According to Martin, fans will have to hold out a little longer to see if Benson takes their advice to heart. “Everybody knows the storytelling of will they or won’t they — we like to keep that question going as long as possible. So to answer, either way, is to sort of kill that anticipation.” Martin then confirmed that Benson is unlikely to act on any impulses in the first episode.
“SVU” showrunner David Graziano also mentioned the delicate balance between good writing and production logistics. “Some of the considerations about Benson and Stabler have nothing to do with narrative, and they’re about just logistics of these two actors’ (Hargitay and Meloni) busy schedules.” But Graziano, who is new to his showrunner post as of June, also brings a fan perspective to the series. “We have a responsibility to Benson as a character, too.”