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How Chris Meloni And Dylan McDermott Make Law And Order: Organized Crime 'Super Fun' To Work On

Wesam Keesh as Malachi on Law & Order Organized Crime
(Image credit: NBC)

The characters of Law & Order: Organized Crime rarely manage to have too much fun for very long when it comes to the cases they investigate, but actor Wesam Keesh has explained that stars Christopher Meloni and Dylan McDermott have ways to make it “super fun” to work on the show. Keesh, who plays hacker extraordinaire Malachi in Season 2, spoke with CinemaBlend about all things Organized Crime, ranging from the upcoming episodes to what it’s like to work with the two veteran TV actors. 

Chris Meloni and Dylan McDermott’s characters are about as far on opposite ends of the spectrum as possible on Law & Order: Organized Crime, but according to Wesam Keesh, both of their acting choices have been great to experience. After praising the “super talented” Ainsley Seiger, with whom he has shared many scenes as the Malachi to her Jet, Keesh shared:

The whole cast and crew are amazing as well. It's actually been pretty amazing. I've gotten to work with Dylan and Chris. And I love just watching them because you get to, as a younger actor, just learn so much from their process, watching their acting choices. And so it's been such a great learning experience as well, on top of it being super fun.

It’s no surprise that Chris Meloni and Dylan McDermott have acting processes worth studying, considering how much TV experience they have between them. Meloni was of course a Law & Order franchise icon even before launching Organized Crime thanks to twelve seasons of SVU, and before that held a key role on HBO’s Oz. For his part, McDermott starred in nearly 150 episodes of The Practice, and recurred on many shows between the end of his time on that show and joining Organized Crime in 2021, including becoming a familiar face in the American Horror Story franchise. 

Chris Meloni Dylan McDermott side by side NBC law and order organized crime

(Image credit: NBC)

So, the Organized Crime cast was already pretty stacked before Wesam Keesh joined in Season 2, with a pretty tight ensemble of characters who banded together even more during the KO arc. Wesam Keesh shared what it was like to join the ensemble in the sprawling Dick Wolf universe (which currently spans nine shows across two networks) with Chris Meloni as the lead, saying:

It's always interesting being the guest actor in an already established ensemble, because you want to meld into their cadence, their tone. But at the same time, you want to stand out with your acting choices, but you want it to make sense with the overall story. And so it's been a lot of fun. And actually, it's been super easy because everybody on the show is so talented, so grounded. They make these great acting choices, the writing is wonderful. And the stories are so intense and watching Chris work a scene, especially one that he's kind of leading, is great because you have all the trust in him, and the writers and the producers and you just go along for the ride and you know, 90% of the work is done for you.

As a franchise fan favorite already, Chris Meloni was the ideal star to return via SVU and then star in his own spinoff, which has established its own serialized style and set of characters to set it apart from the other Law & Order shows. In fact, Stabler’s dynamic with Malachi has been one of the sources of levity in a not-so-light storyline, complete with Malachi going off-script and calling Stabler “Baldy!” over the phone. Interactions between Malachi and Richard Wheatley have been fewer and farther between so far, but Keesh only had praise for Dylan McDermott as well:

Oh man, I love Dylan. Dylan is like the coolest guy in the world. [laughs] He's like that guy you just want to be best friends with right off the bat. And yeah, he's just extremely charming. And you know, he's been working for decades and decades, and just super talented as well. Like some of his other acting work is just incredible. I think he's super underrated, and I just I love his character work on other shows, as well.

All things considered, the Law & Order: Organized Crime set sounds like a lot more fun than it would be to actually be part of an Organized Crime story! Chris Meloni obviously isn’t going anywhere, but Richard Wheatley’s time as the front-and-center nemesis is coming to an end, as Dylan McDermott is moving over to CBS as the new leading man of FBI: Most Wanted, stepping in for the departing Julian McMahon

As for whether or not Wesam Keesh has a future on the show after the end of the Wheatley arc, be sure to tune in to the next episode on Thursday, March 3 at 10 p.m. ET to find out. Law & Order: Organized Crime closes out a night of L&O action on NBC, starting with the Law & Order Season 21 revival at 8 p.m. and continuing with Law & Order: SVU Season 23 at 9 p.m. in the 2022 TV schedule. The three-hour block was a ratings hit in its first week, and it’s likely that NBC will continue doing well with the three shows grouped together. 

Laura Hurley
Laura Hurley

Resident of One Chicago, Bachelor Nation, and Cleveland. Has opinions about crossovers, Star Wars, and superheroes. Will not time travel.