Tom Selleck

‘Magnum P.I.’ Star Larry Manetti ‘Fit Like A Glove’ On Former Co-Star Tom Selleck’s ‘Blue Bloods’

Blue Bloods features another TV icon this week as a guest star, this time one with a very personal connection to Tom Selleck. Larry Manetti, his co-star on the original Magnum, P.I., is featured in a heartbreaking story involving Eddie and Jamie. In an exclusive interview with PopCulture.com ahead of the episode’s premiere on Friday, April 21, Manetti told us that he “fit like a glove” when he was on set with Vanessa Ray and Will Estes.

In “Family Matters,” Maneitt plays Sam Velucci, a grieving grandfather whose grandson died after a fentanyl overdose. When Sam confronts the drug dealer he thinks is responsible with a gun, Eddie (Ray) is forced to arrest him. Eddie later enlists Jamie (Estes) to help put the drug dealer behind bars to comfort Sam. Manetti called Ray “the most wonderful actress and a great actress, and so giving and beautiful,” and said they “fit like a glove” when working together.

The episode doesn’t feature Manetti sharing scenes with Selleck, but he enjoyed the experience so much that he hopes to come back so Sam can 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 said. “And if they’re kind enough to bring me back, maybe I’ll work with him then.”

Manetti was also grateful that showrunner Kevin Wade cast him in a role that was more than a walk-on cameo. “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,” Maneitt gushed. “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.”

Although Manetti and Selleck didn’t film together, they certainly spent plenty of time while Manetti was visiting New York. “I was so excited to do this show. It was such a thrill,” Manetti said. “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.”

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Manetti also visited the set where Selleck and the rest of the cast gather each week for the Reagan family meal. Donnie Wahlberg shared a picture of Manetti joining the Blue Bloods cast on Instagram. “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 said.

Manetti also confirmed the stories about Selleck’s generosity. He called his Magnum co-star the “nicest man, very humble, very simple.” The two have known each other since 1978 when they both worked on The Rockford Files episode “Nice Guys Finish Dead.” Manetti shared a great story about the first time he saw Selleck in person.

“[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 explained. “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. I was sipping a cup of coffee and 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.'”

Blue Bloods airs Fridays at 10 p.m. ET on CBS. This week’s episode also features guest appearances from Dylan Walsh and Bo Dietl. All episodes are streaming on Paramount+.

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