‘Law & Order’ Icon Christopher Meloni Detailed How He Turned Around His ‘Celebrity Jeopardy!’ Experience

by Suzanne Halliburton
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Hollywood Foreign Press Association

Let it be known that Christopher Meloni is super competitive, whether the Law & Order icon is lifting weights or answering questions on a quiz show.

Meloni, who plays Elliot Stabler on Law & Order: Organized Crime, did Celebrity Jeopardy! twice. And he still remembers what it felt like to win. Seems it took him awhile to rally to accurately provide the questions to the show’s answers.

In a chat with Interview, Christopher Meloni said of Celebrity Jeopardy!

“I did it twice. One time it was a Law & Order–themed thing, and [the actors] Katie Erbe and Sam Waterston thought I was playing possum because I was horrible in the warmup round. And then when it was time to really play and Alex Trebek came out, I kicked their ass. It felt good.”

As Meloni noted, he squared off against Kathryn Erbe, a Law & Order veteran in 2006. She played Lt. Alexandra Earnes on both Law & Order: Criminal Intent and Law & Order: SVU. Sam Waterston helped define Law & Order. He played Jack McCoy, who rose through the ranks to become a district attorney on the show. The only actor who appeared in more Law & Order episodes was S. Epatha Merkerson.

As he told Interview, Christopher Meloni won his episode of Celebrity Jeopardy!, with Waterston in second, followed by Erbe.

Here’s a local promo for the Meloni episode.

Christopher Meloni Donated His $50,000 Jeopardy Winnings to Two Charities

Back in 2006, Christopher Meloni split his $50,000 prize between two charities — the Big Apple Circus Clown Care Program and the Montefiore Advocacy Center.

Meloni didn’t fare well on his second Jeopardy appearance. It’s probably why he didn’t mention it. Producers dubbed this Jeopardy! as the Million Dollar Celebrity Invitational. And it aired in December 2009. Joshua Malina, a star on The West Wing, won the day. Former Saturday Night Live cast member Harry Shearer finished second. Meloni was last.

Coincidentally, Malina created Bravo’s Celebrity Poker Showdown. And Christopher Meloni also had thoughts on playing in these Celebrity Poker matches.

He told Interview: “It’s like golf to me. I’m good for five holes and then I just don’t give a s–t anymore.”

Christopher Meloni is hot again after he decided to revive his Elliot Stabler character. He left SVU in 2011. His partnership with Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay) was everything we want from our TV shows, so fans were disappointed when Stabler walked away from the department. However, Meloni returned in March with new franchise Law & Order: Organized Crime.

In the new show, Stabler is back to investigate who murdered his wife. She died in a car bomb that was meant for Stabler. Hargitay, as Benson, showed up in the series premiere to help launch the latest Law & Order franchise.