When Season 11 ended, Chicago Fire fans had lots of questions. Would Stella Kidd be able to bring Kelly Severide back to Firehouse 51? Will Sylvie Brett say yes to Matt Casey's proposal? And if so, will Matt move back to Chicago or will Sylvie leave for Portland? And maybe most importantly: Is Mouch going to die?
No Chicago Fire finale would be complete without lots of drama and Season 11's certainly brought it in spades. But with the writers and actors strikes for fair compensation ongoing, the delayed return of fall TV has viewers wondering when they will see their beloved firehouse again.
Here, we outline everything we know about Chicago Fire Season 12, including when it might premiere and who is returning — or not.
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The good news is that NBC renewed Chicago Fire for its twelfth season in April 2023. (It received a renewal alongside Dick Wolf's other One Chicago shows, Chicago Med and Chicago P.D.) The bad news is that when the network released its fall TV schedule, Chicago Fire wasn't on it.
Because NBC hasn't slated the series for the fall 2023 TV season, it seems likely that Chicago Fire Season 12 won't premiere until 2024. Because of the continued WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, it's unclear if that will be in the early part of 2024 or later. If the strikes were to end soon — which doesn't seem likely — the team behind the show would still need to write and film a few episodes before putting it on the schedule.
This will be the first time in the show's decade-long run that it hasn't premiered in the fall. It typically premieres in September or October; the latest premiere was in 2020, due to COVID-19 filming delays, and even then it only was pushed back to mid-November.
Due to the writer's strike, no storylines have been officially written (or announced) for Chicago Fire Season 12. But we can assume that they will have to answer the big questions that the season 11 finale left open:
After getting hit by shrapnel in the season 11 finale, Mouch survived surgery — only to bleed out in his hospital bed while Herrmann screamed for help from Chicago Med staff. Christian Stolte, who plays Mouch, hasn't said anything about leaving the series, so for now, we'll have to wait and see what the writers room decides.
Another big cliffhanger from the Season 11 finale was Matt Casey proposing to Sylvie Brett while on assignment in Chicago. We're not sure if Sylvie will say yes, but we do know that she didn't want to do the Portland to Chicago long-distance relationship before. So if she does say yes, that means one of two things: Sylvie is moving to Portland or Matt Casey is coming home for good.
If Sylvie won't move to Portland, it could mean that Matt Casey will be asking for his job back at Chicago Fire Department. The reason he left for Portland was to take care of his late friend Andy Darden's two teenage sons. One is now off to college and one is almost there, so there won't be a reason for him to stay much longer.
Obviously, Matt Casey's return to Chicago ultimately hinges on whether Jesse Spencer, who plays his character, will be returning to the show. He's not made any announcements, but Deadline did ask him in April if he was going to return.
"I cannot… answer that question," Spencer told Deadline. "The potential to come back would be awesome. I'm always open to that but you know, the ball isn't really in my court. I always told [series co-creator] Derek Haas that if there were episodes that he thought would be appropriate for me to come back, then I'm totally open to that because I want to see the old gang and I love working there. But in terms of me coming back full-time or something, I have no idea."
For much of Season 11, Kelly Severide's character was missing due to personal leave by actor Taylor Kinney. His absence was explained on the show by Severide being at an arson investigation training program. However, his wife Stella Kidd found out that he had completed the program without telling her and still hadn't returned to Chicago. At the end of the finale, she took her own leave from the firehouse so she could go and get him to come home. It seems likely that Kinney will return as no statements have been made about a permanent departure.
Again, due to the strikes, much about Season 12 is still up in the air. We can't say for sure who will be in the next season of Chicago Fire. However, based on how the storylines stand at the end of Season 11, we've made predictions about which cast members will almost certainly return — and which are on the bubble.
All 11 seasons of Chicago Fire are available to stream on Peacock.