Mariska Hargitay To Direct ‘Law & Order: SVU’ Episode Featuring Alec Baldwin

Mariska Hargitay is making her directorial debut on Law & Order: SVU by bringing in another long-serving NBC star.

Hargitay is directing an episode of the long-running NBC police drama that will feature Alec Baldwin. The episode is set to air sometime this spring, and this week the show’s executive producer Warren Leight shared the first image of Mariska working behind the camera.

“First look: Mariska in charge. Day 1,” he tweeted.

Mariska Hargitay said that directing fulfills a lifelong dream to move behind the camera, something she is well-suited to do after being a cast member for the last 14 seasons.

“It’s a long time coming; I’ve wanted to do it for a while. There are a lot of things that I’ve learned and collected. I know how to get performances, I know what buttons to push in people and I’ve been doing it for a long time…Since I’ve been on SVU, I get more joy, sometimes, from helping somebody else with their performance than my own,” Hargitay told E! News about directing. “That’s when I got the idea…It’s just this idea of helping to tell the story or even help people get in touch, like how people help me to get to my soul. I’m up for the challenge…It feels like a natural progression.”

Though the show has been on the air since 1999, Hargitay said it feels just as fresh as ever.

“I think it’s been a journey,” she told the Today show earlier this year. “I think the writing changes now that we have new showrunners. It feels to me like a different show now, which I think is a great thing. After 15 years the show feels so unbelievably fresh, and that’s a gift.”

There is not yet a premiere date for the Law & Order: SVU episode that Mariska Hargitay directed.