‘Blue Bloods’ Star Tom Selleck Once Guest-Starred As His ‘Magnum P.I.’ Character on a Crime Classic

by Joe Rutland

Imagine “Blue Bloods” star Tom Selleck from his classic TV show “Magnum P.I” getting rescued on another crime drama. Did it really happen?

You bet your favorite female sleuth/author it did. Selleck, who starred in “Magnum P.I.” on CBS, found himself needing help from Jessica Fletcher on a “Murder, She Wrote” episode in 1986. Fletcher was played by movie and Broadway star Angela Lansbury. That, too, was a crime classic also on CBS.

In the episode called “Magnum on Ice,” Fletcher ends up helping Magnum after he’s put behind bars for allegedly being involved in a couple of murders.

All Jessica wanted was a good time on vacation in Hawaii. But she ends up getting into action, trying to pry Magnum out of trouble. Lansbury appeared as Fletcher in a “Magnum P.I.” episode called “Novel Connection.”

“Blue Bloods” started in 2010 and has been a steady presence on the CBS network for 11 seasons. Selleck plays NYPD Commissioner Frank Reagan on the show, which also has a strong support cast with Donnie Wahlberg, Bridget Moynahan, Len Cariou, and Will Estes.

“Magnum, P.I.” ran on CBS between 1980-88. Besides Selleck, regular cast members included John Hillerman, Roger E. Mosley, and Larry Manetti. The network launched a “Magnum” reboot in 2018, but don’t expect to see Selleck on there anytime soon.

Tom Selleck Never Gave His Blessing to ‘Magnum P.I.’ Reboot On CBS

When Tom Selleck heard that CBS was going to give “Magnum P.I.” another shot, it didn’t go over too well with the star.

Selleck has done a large part of his work with CBS. He has a lot of respect for his original role, but Selleck did not support this remake. Selleck was told if he didn’t like the idea, then it would be shut down.

“CBS is kind of my home network,” he told TV Insider. “I’ve done ‘The Young and the Restless’ and (most of) the ‘Jesse Stone’ movies as well as ‘Magnum’ and ‘Blue Bloods’ with them … Peter was very effusive about the project; he grew up with ‘Magnum’ and this was his dream,” Selleck said to TV Insider. Peter is referring to reboot co-creator Peter Lenkov.

The network went ahead with the new “Magnum P.I.” and Selleck let it move forward. It started in 2018 and is apparently coming back for another season.

“I just felt success is so hard to come by in this business, why do I want to root for somebody to fail,” said Selleck. “I just stepped back, and said, ‘I won’t get in your way.'”

These days, Selleck has enough on his plate in dealing with the Reagan family dramas on “Blue Bloods.” That series will be coming back for a 12th season this fall.