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Taylor Kinney's career after Chicago Fire - all we know after actor's leave of absence

Taylor has not been on the show as Kelly Severide since March 2023.


Taylor Kinney attends the 2018 Carousel of Hope Ball at The Beverly Hilton© Rodin Eckenroth
Rebecca Lewis
Rebecca Lewis - Los Angeles
Los Angeles correspondentLos Angeles
July 15, 2023
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Taylor Kinney has been missing from Chicago Fire since January 2023 when NBC confirmed that the actor would be taking a leave of absence from the hit procedural. Very few details have emerged in the months since, although Taylor has broken his social media silence to pay tribute to his late co-star Treat Williams. 

After starring as Lieutenant Kelly Severide for 11 years, what is next for Taylor? Here is all we know. 

CHICAGO FIRE -- "The White Whale" Episode 721 -- Pictured: Taylor Kinney as Lt. Kelly Severide© Getty
Taylor Kinney has starred as Kelly for 11 years

Why did Severide leave Chicago Fire?

In January 2023 it was confirmed that the 41-year-old actor, who currently stars as Lieutenant Kelly Severide, would be taking a leave of absence on the NBC show to deal with a personal matter. 

Scripts were quickly rewritten and fans saw Severide leave Chicago during the Wednesday March 1 episode. It opens with Lieutenant Stella Kidd (Miranda Rae Mayo) in the apartment she shares with her husband, Severide, before she left for work by herself. 

The episode then cut to Firehouse 51 and Captain Van Meter walked into Deputy Chief commissioner Wallace Boden's office where they exchanged tense words. "I want to explain," Van Meter began to which Boden retorted: "Why you took my squad Lieutenant out of commission on a day's notice?" 

Taylor Kinney with Treat Williams on Chicago Fire© Getty Images
Taylor with Treat on Chicago Fire

"To be fair he could have said no but this is the best arson investigation training in the world, hands down," Van Meter continued, "a last minute opening like this is the opportunity of a lifetime for Sevreride. After seeing him hunt down that EV charger evidence last month I couldn't think of a better man." 

"It doesn't mean he's planning a transfer to OFI," Van Meter insisted, before sharing that he felt the expertise Severide will bring back will "benefit the whole department".

 It later emerged that the training was taking place in Alabama. 

Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide in Chicago Fire© NBC
Severide was written out in March

In the penultimate episode of season 11, it emerged that Severide was no longer in Alabama after agreeing to investigate a big arson case after impressing the instructors on his course. But he had not told his wife, nor his team, and the move was discovered by Joe Cruz, after one of the academy's leaders spilled the beans.

Who is Kelly Severide's wife? 

Taylor's Chicago Fire character Severide is married to Lieutenant Stella Kidd, played by Miranda Rae Mayo.

stella kidd chicago fire© NBC
Mirands stars as Kelly's wife Stella

Is Taylor Kinney quitting Chicago Fire? 

It remains unclear whether Severide will be back with Firehouse 51 for season 12 but NBC has made no comment about Taylor's long term commitment to the show. It has been confirmed, however, that in season 12 the main cast, including Miranda, Hanako Greensmith, David Eigenberg and Kara Killmer, will appear in fewer episodes than usual due to budget cuts. 

The franchise's producers, Universal Television and Wolf Entertainment, had reached an agreement with NBC that will keep the show on air for another season with the terms stating that actors will no longer appear in 22 episodes, but between 18 and 20. 

Assaf Cohen as Alexander, Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide, Kara Killmer as Sylvie Brett in Chicago Fire© NBC
Season 12 will see some changes

Will there be season 12 Chicago Fire? 

Yes, there will be a Chicago Fire season 12. However the ongoing Writers Guild strike, and the upcoming Screen Actors Guild strike, may push back the new season even further so it is unclear when it will hit screens. 

How much does Taylor Kinney make on Chicago Fire? 

It is rumored he makes around $24,000 per episode. For 22 episodes, that is over $500,000 a year. 

Taylor Kinney attends the 2018 Carousel of Hope Ball at The Beverly Hilton© Rodin Eckenroth
Taylor Kinney attends the 2018 Carousel of Hope Ball at The Beverly Hilton

Who is Taylor Kinney in a relationship with? 

Taylor has been dating model Ashley Cruger since 2022. 

He was previously engaged to Lady Gaga, whom he met in 2011 on the set of her music video You and I. But they ended their engagement in 2016, with Gaga admitting her work on the film A Star Is Born impacted their relationship. 

Taylor Kinney and Ashley Cruger attend the opening ceremony during the 61st Monte Carlo TV Festival on June 17, 2022 © Stephane Cardinale - Corbis
Taylor Kinney and Ashley Cruger attend the opening ceremony during the 61st Monte Carlo TV Festival in 2022

Does Taylor Kinney have a child?

 No, Taylor Kinney does not have any children.

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