From the looks of it, Vanessa Lachey and the rest of the “NCIS: Hawai’i” cast and crew are having a blast on set while filming.
The latest “NCIS” spin-off will take place in Pearl Harbor. And luckily for the cast, it looks like a majority of the filming is happening on location. So for the past month or so, Lachey and her fellow cast and crew members have been enjoying their time on the islands of Hawai’i.
They already have a slew of inside jokes and references, most involving the native culture of the islands. On her Instagram, the”NCIS” star will refer to the group as her “ohana.” Lachey’s also constantly throwing up the Hawaiian shaka sign (thumb and pinky finger extended), especially in director Larry Teng’s Instagram posts.
Yesterday, Lachey made yet another reference to an inside joke shared by the cast and crew. She even invoked the infamous saying, “If you know, you know.” This time, the post referred to both a popular Hawaiian dish and a famous Nigerian-British singer.
#IYKYK Smooth Manapua… SMOOOOOOOTH MANAPUAAAA!” Lachey captioned the post. In the picture, the “NCIS” star and crew member David Crans rock matching t-shirts featuring “Smooth Operator” singer Sade. The cover for Sade’s first album, Diamond Life, decorates the front of their shirts along with the words “Smooth Manapua” where the album name would go.
Manapua is a traditional Hawaiian dish similar to a steamed bun. According to Onolicious Hawai’i, the word manapua is actually “a shortened version of two words: Mea ʻono puaʻa which means ‘delicious pork thing’ and Mauna puaa which means ‘mountain of pork.'” Sounds heavenly.
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“NCIS: Hawai’i” star Vanessa Lachey has certainly enjoyed a manapua or two while on set. In another recent Instagram post, Lachey shared a photo of her adorable daughter Brooklyn. The six-year-old absolutely destroys a pancake in the pic, and Lachey says, “She is DEFINITELY my daughter!”
But her co-star Jason Antoon laid out some facts in the comments. “This is how you eat manapuas on set,” Antoon wrote with a laughing emoji.
The cast and crew have been on the islands since June, giving them plenty of time to scarf down some manapua. It also allows Lachey time to really step into her new role as “NCIS” Special Agent in Charge Jane Tennant.
Lachey as Tennant will be the first female lead for an “NCIS” show. She’ll join the ranks of Mark Harmon, LL Cool J, Chris O’Donnell, and Scott Bakula. She’ll also be joined by cast members Enver Gjokaj, Yasmine Al-Bustami, Alex Tarrant, and Noah Mills. The debut season will premiere Monday, Sept. 20 at 10/9 CT.