This week, Blue Bloods welcomes an iconic guest star to the show with a unique link to series lead Tom Selleck. Larry Manetti, Selleck’s Magnum P.I. costar, appears in a poignant story alongside characters Eddie and Jamie.
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Although Manetti does not share any scenes with Selleck in this episode, he enjoyed the experience so much that he is anxious to return and let his character meet Commissioner Frank Reagan. “I didn’t do any scenes with Tom because it was felt that I might confuse the audience because of Magnum being such a fantastic famous show, but it worked out really, really well,” Manetti told Pop Culture. “And if they’re kind enough to bring me back, maybe I’ll work with him then.”
Manetti was deeply appreciative that showrunner Kevin Wade provided him with a role far more expansive than a one-off cameo. His chracter plays a central role in the Blue Bloods episoide. “An actor dreams to get a role like this, and as actors, you take whatever you get to pay the bill. But this was a doubleheader,” Maneitti explained. “And I can’t thank Kevin Wade, who was the executive producer of the show, enough for having the guts and balls for bringing me on. I can’t bow over backward [enough] for him.”
Manetti even visited the most iconic ‘Blue Bloods’ set… the Reagan family dinner table
Manetti also made a pitstop at the set where Selleck and his fellow castmates congregated every week for a Reagan family get-together. Donnie Wahlberg posted an image of Manetti becoming part of the Blue Bloods team on Instagram to spread word about it. “I’ve been around 50 years and I never, ever guest starred on a show than had more empathy, real warmth, and people bending over backward for me. I felt like Julius Caesar,” Manetti quipped.
Although Manetti and Selleck never shared the screen, they still had a great time together during Manetti’s stay in New York. “I was so excited to do this show. It was such a thrill,” Manetti gushed. “My wife and I had gone to Hawaii and I did a Magnum P.I., and then we flew to New York and we did Blue Bloods and it was heaven. From the moment I stepped on the New York earth, it was just wonderful. Selleck and I had dinner every night with my wife Nancy, at his favorite restaurant for I think six or seven nights. So it was a truly surreal event.”
Manetti recalls the first time he ever laid eyes on Selleck…
Amazingly, Manetti and Selleck go back even further than their Magnum P.I. days. The pair both guest starred on a 1978 episode of The Rockford Files called “Dead Guys Finish Dead”. Manetti vividly recalls his first meeting with the future tv icon.
“[On] the first day of shooting, I hadn’t met Tom yet, and I was lying on a stage in a big auditorium, and next to me was Simon Oakland, the actor,” Manetti recalled. “And I had a duffle bag under my head and there were like a hundred extras. You could barely hear anybody next to you talk to you. All of a sudden it was dead silent. I jerked up, looked up, and I saw this creature walking in, [all] 6-foot-4 of him in a white suit. I looked and I turned and said to Simon Oakland, ‘Who is that?’ And he said, ‘That’s Tom Selleck, he’s the star of the show.’ And I said, ‘He’s prettier than Elizabeth Taylor.'”
Manetti’s episode of Blue Bloods airs this Friday on CBS.