Tom Selleck Young: Photos of the Blue Bloods Star Through the Years
He may be known as one of the most iconic actors in primetime television today, but before Magnum P.I., Friends and Blue Bloods, a young Tom Selleck was just trying to make a name for himself in Hollywood.
Selleck — whose full name is Thomas William Selleck — was born on January 29, 1945. He starred for years as small unnamed characters and movies and TV shows before his breakout role 1980 as private investigator Thomas Magnum in CBS’ primetime drama series Magnum P.I. The series ran for eight seasons from 1980 to 1988 and earned Selleck five Emmy Award nominations in the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series category. He won his first Emmy in the category in 1985. After Magnum P.I., Selleck also starred in a recurring role as Richard Burke in Friends from Season 2 to Season 6.
Selleck returned to primetime television in 2010 when he debuted as New York City Police Commissioner Frank Reagan in CBS’ Blue Bloods.
In an interview with Entertainment Tonight in November 2022, Selleck revealed that he never thought he would be on a long-running primetime drama series again after the finale of Magnum P.I. “We did eight [seasons] on Magnum [P.I.] and I thought I’d never get that lucky again and now we’ve done 13 [on Blue Bloods] and going strong,” Selleck said.
He continued, “It’s hard to say you’re gonna go 13 seasons and we’re approaching 300 episodes, but I’ve always thought the show had enormous potential because there’s police work but it was a character-driven show. And I think my experience on Magnum was the same thing — being character-driven, the story could keep evolving and change when people get older, and all those things add to your ability to tell stories. We’re not out of ideas yet.”
Selleck’s Blue Bloods co-star, Donnie Wahlberg who plays Danny Reagan, also confessed to Entertainment Tonight that hever predicted that the series would air for as long as it did. “It takes a lot of luck to get to this point,” he said. “For anyone who’s trying to have a career in acting or show business, you need luck. You need an audience that cares about your show or whatever it is you’re doing and you need a great team. There’s so many elements that go into it but when we started I would say I thought it would be around for a little while, I couldn’t imagine 13 years,” he said. “But I definitely thought five, maybe six or seven. But it’s like a train now. It just won’t stop rolling.”
1970: Tom Selleck Attends the Myra Breckinridge Premiere With Mae West
Tom Selleck attended the premiere of his first movie, Myra Breckinridge, with his co-star, Mae West, on June 23, 1970. He was 25 years old at the time. The movie starred Raquel Welch as Myra Breckinridge, a transgender woman who undergoes a sex change operation and claims to be her own widow. West portrayed a casting agent named Letiticia Van Allen, while Selleck played an unnamed characteer as one of Letiticia’s “studs.”
1972: Tom Selleck Stars in Daughters of Satan
Tom Selleck was 27 years old when he starred with Barra Grant in Daughters of Satan, a horror movie in which he plays a museum curator who buys a painting that curses him and his wife. The movie was his second film after Myra Breckinridge.
1973: Tom Selleck Stars in Wide World Mystery
Tom Selleck starred with actor Anjanette Comer in the ABC anthology series, The Wide World of Mystery, in 1974. He appeared as the character Mark Brolin in the episode “Shadow of Fear.” The series was the fourth television show Selleck had filmed. He was 28 years old at the time.
1974: Tom Selleck Poses With His Young & Restless Co-Stars
Tom Selleck posed for a piture with his Young and the Restless co-sars, Deidre Hall (Barbara Anderson) and Jaime Lyn Bauer (Lorie Brooks), in Los Angeles, California, in November 1974. He was 29 years old at the time. Selleck played Jed Andrews on the soap opera from 1974 to 1975. He also appeared in 2005.
1974: Tom Selleck Poses With His First Wife
Tom Selleck posed for a picture with his first wife, Jacquelyn Ray, in Los Angeles, California, in December 1974. He was 29 years old at the time. Selleck was married to Ray from 1971 to 1982. They had one child, an adopted son named Kevin, who was born in 1966.
1975: Tom Selleck Stars in Young & Restless
Tom Selleck starred in a scene with actor Jaime Lyn Bauer in Young and the Restless in 1975. Baeuer played Lorie Brooks, while Selleck played Jed Andrews. He was 30 years old at the time.
1976: Tom Selleck Stars in Most Wanted
Tom Selleck starred as Tom Roybo in the pilot episode of ABC’s TV series Most Wanted in 1976. He was 31 years old at the time. The series was cancelled after one season in 1977.
1978: Tom Selleck Stars in Battle of the Network Stars
Tom Selleck starred in the reality TV competition series Battle of the NetworkStars in 1978. He was 33 years old at the time. The series ran from 1976 to 1988, and saw television stars from the three major networks — ABC, CBS and NBC — compete in sporting events against each other.
1979: Tom Selleck Stars in The Sacketts
Tom Selleck starred with actor Sam Elliott in the Western TV movie The Sacketts in 1979. Selleck was 34 years old at the time. The movie followed the story of the Sackett brothers, who left their Tennessee home in 1869 to start a new life together in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
1980: Tom Selleck Poses For a Shirtless Photoshoot
Tom Selleck posed for a shirtless photoshoot in Los Angeles, California, in 1980. He was 35 years old at the time. The photographer was Michael Ochs. The photoshoot came the same year Selleck debuted in his career-making role as Thomas Magnum in CBS’ Magnum P.I.
1982: Tom Selleck Attends the Golden Globes
Tom Selleck attended the 39th annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California, on January 30, 1982. He was 37 years old at the time. Selleck was nominated in the Best Actor — Television Series Drama category for his role as Thomas Magnum in CBS’ Magnum P.I.He lost the award to John Forsythe, who played Blake Carrington in ABC’s Dynasty.
1983: Tom Selleck Photographed Without His Mustache
Tom Selleck was photographed without his signature mustache in 1983. He was 38 years old at the time.
1989: Tom Selleck Attends the Oscars
Tom Selleck attended the 61st annual Oscars in Los Angeles, California, in 1989. He was 44 years old at the time. He was a presenter at the Academy Awards show and introduced Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson.
1990: Tom Selleck Appears on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
Tom Selleck appeared with guest host Jay Leno on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson on October 15, 1990. At the time, Selleck was promoting his movies Quigley Down Under and Three Men and a Little Lady. The appearance also came two years after the series finale of CBS’ Magnum P.I. in 1988.