Law & Order: SVU Shocker: Who's Out?

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When Law & Order: SVU returns for Season 25, it will be without a familiar face.

According to TV Line, Molly Burnett is bowing out as Det. Grace Muncy as a series regular.

Burnett's exit played out during the conclusion of Law & Order: Organized Crime Season 3, which served as a crossover with SVU.

Ambulance Assaults - Law & Order: SVU

Muncy revealed to Joe Velasco (Octavio Pisano) that Chief Tommy McGrath (Terry Serpico) had rewarded her dedication to the Elias Olsen case by giving her a spot on a DEA task force.

As a result, Burnett is no longer a series regular, but that doesn't mean she won't pop back up down the line.

Molly Burnett Joins SVU - Law & Order: SVU Season 24 Episode 2

If the Law & Order universe has taught us anything, former stars are never truly gone and pop back up when there's a story to tell.

Wolf Entertainment, which produces SVU, shared a clip of Molly's goodbye in more detail.

Burnett initially appeared in a recurring capacity before being bumped up to series regular billing.

No details about why the star is being written out of the show have been revealed, but if we had to guess, it's a budgetary reason.

Assaulted Twice - Law & Order: SVU Season 24 Episode 22

As the broadcast networks tussle with declining returns due to reduced viewers, changes are being ushered in that are making significant changes behind the scenes.

For one, the series regulars on the One Chicago and Law and Order franchises are getting fewer episodes guaranteed per season, which will help trim the budget of the shows overall.

CBS went one step further and released all but two series regulars from Bob Hearts Abishola.

The network also asked the cast of Blue Bloods to take a pay cut to secure a renewal for the long-running procedural.

Muncy Misses Velasco - Law & Order: SVU Season 24 Episode 16

The TV industry is changing, and we shouldn't expect the change to stop here.

We know Law & Order: SVU is on track to return to NBC later this year, but it might be postponed due to the Hollywood Writers Strike.

What are your thoughts on the news?

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Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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