Law & Order: Special Victims Unit has always featured
episodes ripped straight from the world’s most
controversial headlines and it looks like this hot-button
tradition will continue in the drama’s 15th season.
The NBC procedural is currently filming an episode that
looks to be inspired by one of the biggest and most
controversial legal stories of the year: the shooting of
Trayvon Martin and the trial of George Zimmerman.
Based on these photos snapped on the set Tuesday,
SVU is taking on the case that both polarized and
outraged the nation.
According to the Daily Mail, Cybill Shepard has been
tasked to play a vigilante-like character who killed a
black teenager named Mehcad. Arrested
Development’s Jeffrey Tambor is playing her lawyer,
and the scene filmed yesterday involved a protest very
much like the ones held during Zimmerman’s trial in
July. Extras can be seen holding signs almost identical
to the ones created to mourn Trayvon Martin.
Castmembers Ice-T, Mariska Hargitay, Richard Belzer
and Raul Esparza were also filming at the protest
scenes. The episode is allegedly titled “American
When asked if this episode was in fact based on the
Trayvon Martin case, NBC would only say: “SVU is
This is not the first time SVU has tackled mainstream
cases. Last season, the series aired an
episode featuring a hip-hop star named Caleb
Bryant accused of physically assaulting his girlfriend
Micha, who is also a famous singer. Sound familiar?
The new season of Law & Order: SVU premieres Sept.
25 on NBC.