‘Law & Order: SVU’ Star Mariska Hargitay Pays Tribute to Late Co-Star Ned Eisenberg

by Allison Hambrick

Law & Order: SVU icon Mariska Hargitay honored the memory of her deceased costar Ned Eisenberg. He recurred on the series as defense attorney Roger Kessler. Additionally, he played six different roles across the Law & Order franchise.

“My heart is so full of sadness over the loss of our dear, dear Ned Eisenberg,” Hargitay wrote on Instagram. “What a light and what a love. And such a first-rate actor, which pales next to him as a first-rate human. We will remember him always with his bright, mischievous smile and his wide-open heart. We love and miss you, sweet Ned.”

Additionally, fans mourned the actor, whose time on the series was memorable. One such fan wrote: “Once an SVU Alum, always always always an SVU Alum. His time may be Dun Dun, but this was his story…”

His wife also shared a statement about the actor. Sadly, Eisenberg suffered from two forms of cancer which ultimately claimed his life.

“As Ned would say, he was attacked by two very rare assassins — cholangiocarcinoma and ocular melanoma,” said Eisenberg’s wife. “Over the course of two years, he bravely fought the cancers in private while continuing to work in show business to ensure that his medical coverage paid for himself and his family.”

The actor also starred Mare of Easttown, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and The Blacklist. His most recent appearance on SVU was in 2019.

Law & Order: SVU Star Mariska Hargitay Talks Best Guest Stars

When a show is on as long as SVU, it racks up a number of iconic guest stars. As a result, picking a singular favorite is difficult. However, for Hargitay, there was one clear answer.

 “Robin Williams,” said the SVU star. “It was being in the presence of true greatness. He had this huge heart: The set photographer captured Robin playing with my son, August [almost 2 at the time], with a smile from ear to ear.”

The late Williams starred in the SVU episode “Authority.” He played a skilled manipulator who impersonated law enforcement individuals to convince others to commit crimes. Over the course of the episode, it’s revealed that his character developed a disdain for authority after his pregnant wife lost her life as a result of a doctor’s actions. The episode reaches a stunning climax as he kidnaps Benson and uses her against Stabler. While his actions are horrendous, Williams’s acting is so tremendous, audiences can’t help but be moved.

Of course, Hargitay’s actual favorite guest star was Peter Hermann, her husband, who she met on set. Hermann first guest-starred in an episode alongside John Ritter, but his character quickly became a frequent SVU guest star. In fact, he even appeared in the star-studded 500th episode.