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Chicago Fire boss reveals this major character return after season 12 delay

A fan-favorite character is returning following the season 11 cliffhanger

CHICAGO FIRE -- Season: 10 -- Hanko Greensmith as Violet Mikami, Christian Stolte as Mouch, Alberto Rosende as Blake Gallo, Kara Killmer as Sylvie Brett, Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey, Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide, David Eigenberg as Christopher Herrmann, Joe Minoso as Joe Cruz, Miranda Rae Mayo as Stella Kidd, Daniel Kyri as Darren Ritter
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
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Calling all Chicago Fire fans! The show's bosses have revealed that fan-favorite character Matt Casey, played by Jesse Spencer, will return in the upcoming 12th season, which airs on January 17 and is set to be shorter than usual due to limited production time caused by the Hollywood strikes.

Executive producer, Andrea Newman, who became the sole showrunner this season in light of previous co-showrunner Derek Haas' departure, revealed what's on the cards for Matt and his ex-girlfriend Sylvie Brett (Kara Killmer) following his surprise proposal at the end of season 11.

WATCH: Chicago Fire's emotional Casey and Brett reunion

Confirming Jesse's return to the show, Andrea told Variety: "Jesse Spencer will be back — our beloved Matt Casey. We can't live without him. He's truly the best."

Jesse originally left the show after season ten but made a comeback during the final installment of the following season, which ended with Matt's proposal to his ex-girlfriend Sylvie Brett (Kara Killmer) during a brief trip into town.

Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey, Kara Killmer as Sylvie Brett in Chicago Fire Season 11© NBC
Casey proposed to Brett in the season 11 finale

"I got something about a year and a half ago, and I wanted to give it to you before I go back to Portland," said Matt, before getting down on one knee. "Sylvie Brett, we were meant to be. Will you make me and three kids the luckiest family in the world and marry me?" 

The episode concluded with a major cliffhanger, with fans having to wait until the upcoming season to find out her answer. 

On what viewers can expect from Brett and Casey in the new season, Andrea said: "We will find out pretty quickly what Brett's plans are, but her plans — made with the best of intentions — don't go as she wants them to. So we'll find out a lot quickly and then things will change; there will be a rollercoaster."

Jesse Spencer stands by engine in Chicago Fire© NBC
Jesse Spencer returns to Chicago Fire in season 12

Another fan-favorite character fans will be pleased to see back on screens is Kelly Severide, who is played by Taylor Kinney

In January last year, it was announced that Taylor would be taking a break from his role in the drama to deal with an undisclosed personal matter.

Taylor last appeared in season 11's 14th episode, 'Run Like Hell', with the following installment explaining that Severide had left the Windy City for a prestigious OFI training camp in Alabama. 

Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide in Chicago Fire © NBC
Taylor Kinney will reprise his role as Kelly Severide in the new season

In a later episode, it was revealed that the firefighter had left the camp in Alabama to investigate a major arson case but had neglected to inform his wife, Stella Kidd [Miranda Rae Mayo], nor his team at Firehouse 51. The news was uncovered by Joe Cruz, who was told by one of the academy's leaders.

So, what's in store for Severide and Kidd upon his return? 

Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide, Miranda Rae Mayo as Stella Kidd in season 10 of Chicago Fire© NBC
Fans can expect tension between Severide and Stella Kidd

"There's a whole new dynamic between them," said Andrea. "The heat and the sexual tension are as high as ever. They can't keep their hands off each other, as usual, and yet, there's this new dynamic that is present between them, something we haven't seen before." 

The showrunner went on to tease "an edge in the air between them", with the OFI case that Severide has been working on set to "bring up a lot of tension".