Tom Selleck’s life and career, from Magnum P.I. to avocado farmer

The man and his moustache, which is an inseparable part of the actor and his roles, has had a windy road to success, but his one big positive light in his life is without a doubt his family. He is still happily married to his second wife of 30 years and is raising his daughter away from the spotlight. From his Magnum P.I. days to his stints of guest starring roles to the huge Hollywood star he is today, this is the story of a determined actor and family man known as Tom Selleck.

How far would he go?

It’s undeniable that Selleck loves his farm, but would he do anything to keep it running and maintained? Would he actually steal water to use for his extensive ranch?

When the state of California was hit with an unfortunate drought, Selleck wanted to make sure that it wouldn’t affect his beloved avocados. He allegedly used a truck to transfer $1.4 million worth of hydrant water to be used for their 65-acre avocado farm and was accused of stealing and later sued by the Calleguas Municipal Water District in Ventura County.

P.I. – Private Investigated

The Magnum P.I. star found himself on the other side of the fence when he was the one being investigated after he and his wife, Jillie, were accused of using “large white water tender type truck” to make the trip from the property to pump and vice versa.


This allegedly happened around 12 times before someone noticed. he case was investigated and it has been confirmed that both sides have reached an unofficial agreement.

The settlement

In order to document the alleged misconduct, the water district spent almost $22,000 on a private investigator. In the settlement, The Magnum P.I. star had to pay $21,000, just enough to cover the investigative costs.


That is the only scandalous case the actor has ever really been involved in, pretty impressive for a Hollywood star. In any case, it’s great to see that even at the age of 70, Selleck is still passionate about life, his farm and his family.

Still growing strong

The Blue Bloods actor and his famous mustache are still growing strong. There’s even a Twitter account in honor of the famous stache’.


It only makes sense, because just like its owner, the actor’s facial hair has been part of show business for as long as we can remember. It has its own nostalgic meaning and significance and we have a feeling that it’s here to stay. As long as it means that Selleck will continue acting, we’re fine with that.

A good boy from a good family

As a young boy in Detroit, Tom grew up in a family of hard-working parents who made sure that Tom and his siblings’ life would be nothing but great.

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His father had one dream and that was to move to California. Despite his family’s financial problems growing up, the young Selleck never felt the stress in that sense and always had his parents there to set a good example. When the family finally moved to Sherman Oaks, he enjoyed the Californian life as much as he could.

An expensive lesson

He spent his high school years mostly like a normal teenager. He was a good student, joined all the sports club, he was a great athlete and his main worries were which college he would eventually attend.


His one big dream was to enroll in University of Southern California, however the costs were way too high for him to afford. After the future graduated from Grant High School in 1962, he worked as hard as he could to earn a basketball scholarship. Eventually, the hard working boy got himself into USC, the university of his dreams.

6’4″ tall

Being as tall as he is probably didn’t hurt his successful basketball career in college. Besides playing sports, Selleck also majored in Business and was a member of one of the University’s fraternity house, Sigma Chi fraternity.


It was during his last year of studies that his drama teacher pitched him the idea that he should try acting. He decided to try out new directions and attended the Beverly Hills Playhouse.

Checking out the small screen

Selleck already had his stint at modeling, so being under the spotlight never scared him.


However, it wasn’t only his drama coach who talked him into acting, his fraternity brothers also thought it would be a good idea for him to go on the hit show from the ’60s The Dating Game. Selleck became an overnight sensation and Pepsi didn’t waste any time and hired him to their Pepsi-Cola commercial. That was one of many commercials he would star in in the future.

Fox got in the picture

One thing led to another and Selleck’s great exposure on television led him to one of his biggest career breakthroughs.

Coma Tom Selleck

Twentieth Century Fox noticed the actor and they offered him to sign as a talent for their production company. They had a new talent program and they didn’t want to give up on Selleck. The young man jumped at the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and found himself attending their training class the next day.

Young and Restless

During the early seventies, Selleck landed a minor role on a major show. He played the role of Jed Andrews on the long-running and award winning soap opera, The Young and the Restless.


The iconic show which was set in Genoa City featured all the drama that one can expect from a daily soap. Some of these were the multiple love triangles, though in his real life, Tom showed quite a different predilection.

His first marriage

Selleck married his first wife, former model Jacqueline Ray in 1971 after they dated for one year. During the time they were together, Selleck adopted his wife’s son, Kevin.


Ray was even featured in one episode of her husband’s hit show, Magnum P.I. in season 3 of the show in an episode called Birdman of Budapest. The couple decided to go their separate ways in 1982, after 11 years of marriage.

Worried about his stepson

Tom remained close to his adopted son Kevin even after his marriage to Kevin’s mom Jacqueline ended. Selleck was the perfect father figure for the boy and Kevin thought the world of his stepdad.


However, Kevin’s problems began when he was just a teenager. In recent years he got into financial problems and his failed music career didn’t help, either. Unfortunately, nothing seems to work to get Kevin back on the right track.

The famous Mustache

It’s impossible to write about Tom Selleck’s life without mentioning his famous mustache. It’s safe to say that many times, the appearance of his mustache would shape the roles he played.


It always seemed like it had a life of its own, it was confident and powerful and incredibly alluring, but mostly it was ageless. Oh, and in case you were wondering, Tom he doesn’t have a nickname for it.

Oh Baby

Selleck’s role on the 1987 comedy film Three Men and a Baby, where he played alongside Steve Guttenberg and Ted Danson, really helped in establishing the actor’s career on the big screen.


The film was hugely successful worldwide and Selleck proved his comical side playing architect Peter Mitchell. The film was actually the biggest motion picture box office hit of that same year and it eventually grossed more than $170 million just in the U.S. alone.

His second marriage

It must have been his emotional and more tender side that Selleck expressed in the film that made his second wife, actress Jillie Mack, be swooned by her famous beau at the time.


The couple tied the knot On August 7, 1987 and their daughter, Hannah Selleck was born a year and a half later. Mack was on different television shows including ER Frasier and The Wizard. The couple is still going strong and they enjoy their life on their avocado farm in Thousand Oaks-Westlake Village.

A Magnum Star?

When Tom Selleck was 35 years old, he finally got the big break in his career that he deserved. He landed the lead role on the hot show, Magnum P.I. and even relocated to Hawaii just for the filming.


However, it wasn’t a smooth start for the star of the show as the production was put on hold leaving the actor in a rather precarious situation. In the meantime he worked for $7 an hour as a handyman for his local landlord. Things were definitely tough in the beginning for the hopeful actor.

A man of many talents

It’s known in Hollywood that most actors and actresses are not just good at what they do. Many of them also turn to singing, dancing, hosting and more. However not many of them are also really good atheletes, not like Tom Selleck was.


During the time he spent in Hawaii he was part of the volleyball team of Hawaii’s Outrigger Canoe Club. The team went on to win two national championships, which is pretty impressive.

A Ferrari tale

There are problems on every set, and that’s a fact. One of the things the producers had to deal with while shooting was fitting the tall Selleck into his famous car.


The red Ferrari that Magnum drove around the island wasn’t actually the original car choice of the producer and the director. In fact, he was supposed to drive a Porsche, but due to his tall figure, which didn’t allow him to fit inside the expensive car, they changed it.

Jillie Mack on Magnum P.I.

Jillie Mack, Tom Selleck’s current wife, also had a small role on the show. Mack appeared in an episode called Rembrandt’s Girl that was aired during the show’s fourth season.


Mack wasn’t the only family member of Selleck who appeared on the series, his parents also had a brief sting on their son’s hit show. It must have been nice for the couple to act together on the same show, as it was another way for them to spend time together, something that was a top priority for Tom.

Tom and Monica

Who can forget Tom Selleck and the more recent role that he played on the hit sitcom, Friends. Selleck played a handsome ophthalmologist named Richard Burke who catches Monica Geller’s attention.


The two quickly hit it off, despite their 21-year age difference. His first appearance was at the end of season two on an episode called ‘The Time When Ross and Rachel… You Know.’ and he later appeared in 8 more episodes over the next seasons. His role was a memorable one, especially due to its affect on Monica’s love life.

Hey Mr. Policeman

Currently, Selleck plays New York City Police Commissioner named Frank Reagan on CBS’s Blue Bloods. The series which debuted in 2010 is still running and Selleck plays alongside Donnie Wahlberg and Bridget Moynahan.


The funny thing is that people tend to mix the actor for a real policeman (he does look the part we have to say that) and he would sometimes get saluted by real officers of NYPD when he walks down the street. That’s pretty funny.

He supports the Republican party

While many celebrities don’t like to mix business and politics, Selleck was an open and active supporter of John McCain, the Republican candidate in 2008.


He endorsed the senator during the presidential election in 2008. On his views, Selleck defined himself as a ״registered independent with a lot of libertarian leanings.״ The actor is also a longtime member of the National Rifle Association (NRA).

Be their guest

Apart from having several appearances in many films, including the lead role in Three Men and a Baby, Selleck had many guest roles on different shows.


As we’ve already learned earlier, his biggest guest role was when he played Richard Burke, Monica’s object of affection on the hit sitcom, Friends. His character remained Monica’s love of her life throughout the show. Selleck was also a guest star on Boston Legal where he played one of Candice Bergen’s exes.

His questionable net worth

We have to admit we were kind of surprised to learn that the estimated net worth of the Magnum P.I. star is “only” $25 million. For someone who has a professional career that has spanned over five decades, this number is considered fairly low in Hollywood terms.


As he has appeared in more than 50 films and television roles and won many awards for his performances, it does make you wonder if he regrets signing with Magnum P.I.

Tom was offered the lead on Baywatch

Who can imagine Baywatch, the hit show from the 90’s, without the one and only Mitch Buchannon being played by David Hasselhoff? Because apparently, the Magnum P.I. star was offered the lead role before it was offered to Hasselhoff.


The actor turned the role down because he didn’t want to be perceived in a certain way that would hurt his future roles. We actually can see Selleck running along the beach in his red bathing suit, can’t you?

From Hawaii to Vegas

It seemed for a while that after the success of Magnum P.I., Selleck will have a hard finding his place in the spotlight when it comes to television.

las vegas

Well, it took the actor about 20 years to land his next big role on a drama show when he joined the cast of NBC’s Las Vegas in 2007 in its fifth season. He played the role of A.J. Cooper, a Casino owner.

Take his advice

When you look at Tom Selleck’s face, if there’s one thing people can say about the man is that he has a trustworthy face, that’s why it’s not surprising that AAG, American Advisors Group chose the actor to lead their campaign on television and serve as the company’s spokesperson.


Selleck replaced the former representative, actor and politician Fred Thompson after the latter passed away. Wouldn’t you take his word?

Off to Broadway

We’ve already come to realize that Tom Selleck is a man of many talents and he is not afraid to go in different directions. In 2001, he joined the cast of A Thousand Clowns, a Broadway play that was a revival of Herb Gardner’s comic screenplay.


Reportedly, the rugged actor always wanted to play the free-spirited and scruffy Murray Burns and have the lead role. The show was on the road since May of that year and the production traveled all over the country.

His affair with Marie

Tom Selleck was a heartthrob in every sense of the word. Besides his two marriages he also dated quite a few fine starlets one of them was former model, Marie Helvin.

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In her autobiography, Marie talks about her fling with the Magnum P.I. star and how it almost cost her her marriage: ‘On one of my visits to Hawaii, the whole place was in uproar because Tom Selleck was there filming Magnum, P.I. We met – and I found myself very attracted to him…Then Tom Selleck came to London.

Tom and Mimi

Before she married Tom Cruise, actress Mimi Rogers had quite a stormy love life. The Lost in Space actress got lost in Tom Selleck’s eyes (or perhaps his famous mustache) back in 1982 when the two were an item.


Rogers has already been divorced from her first hubby, James Rogers. When she started dating the Magnum P.I. star. The reportedly dated for one year and then about four years later she married actor Tom Cruise, only to divorce in 1990.

His Love Letter to Ellen

We’re pretty sure that Tom Selleck, who has over 50 films and shows under his belt, has been proud of most of his work. However, there are certainly a few projects he must regret taking on for example being part of the 1999 romantic comedy film, The Love Letter.


Selleck starred alongside Kate Capshaw, Peter Chan and the talk show queen Ellen DeGeneres when she was still an actress. Let’s just say that the movie didn’t do so well in the box office and that it received some very negative reviews.

The right to defend himself

Speaking of talk show hosts, when Rosie O’Donnell invited Tom Selleck to be a guest on her show in 1999, she didn’t expect things would go seriously wrong.

the right to defend

The host, some would say, ambushed the actor with her questions on the Second Amendment, gun control and his support of the NRA. Selleck thought he was coming in to promote the movie, The Love Letter, but she apparently had other plans. Eventually, Rosie was forced to apologize to the actor.

A true star

Receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is one of the most honorable moment’s in a Hollywood star’s life. While Selleck was still in the process of filming his popular show, Magnum P.I., he was honored with a star on the famous boulevard.

walk of fame

Selleck has received many awards throughout his career including an Emmy in 1984 for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series as well as Golden Globe for Best Performance in 1985.

The stache’ on social media

We can only imagine that if Tom Selleck was born in the ’90s he would for sure have his own Facebook page. Social media platforms are for everyone no matter how old they are or whether they are human.

social media

In a funny and nostalgic way, we suppose, Tom Selleck’s mustache, which has become a star on its own really, has its own Facebook page that is maintained by the fans of the famous ‘stache. Like.

His Ferrari is for sale

If you’re a die-hard fan of the show, you would probably pay a lot of money to purchase anything that is related to the show or its cast. But how much would you really pay for Magnum P.I.’s red Ferrari?

the ferrari

The expensive car that the private investigator used to drive around was up for sale in 2017 for $250,000. It came with a certificate of authentication, but eventually was sold for a little over $180,000.

Grab it with both hands

If you’re a big star on a successful show, you might as well write a tell-all book about your experiences on the set. Larry Manetti, who starred alongside Tom Selleck on Magnum P.I., took his experiences to the books when he published a memoir called Aloha Magnum.

aloha magnum

In the autobiography, Manetti reveals what went on behind the scenes including his friendship with Selleck and his-ex girlfriend, Mimi Rogers and more.

A Magnum farewell

When the show went off the air in 1988 it was much to the fans’ disappointment. However, the grand finale was extremely successful, which is not a given in Hollywood as final episodes can really go both ways.

a Magnum farewell

Magnum P.I.’s final episode broke records in terms of viewership, and until today it’s considered the sixth most watched finale on television history. More than 50 million people watched the when Magnum decided to rejoin the Navy.

He never left

A bit part of the show’s storyline was Magnum’s travels around the world. However, the production team did an extremely good job to make sure the audience didn’t notice that the characters didn’t really go anywhere.

160 episoes

The only time the crew really left for an international location to shoot was during the show’s sixth season in an episode called Déjà Vu which was filmed in London. So nope, they were never really in Japan nor Kenya.

162 episodes, eight seasons

Out of the 163 episodes that the show was had since the first time it aired on December 11, 1980, Tom Selleck, the star of Magnum P.I. starred in 162 episodes.

break from teh show

He was there for the show’s entire run. When he won the prestigious Emmy for his outstanding performance, the show’s rating skyrocketed and it has received even greater attention and exposure. Now that’s what we call commitment.

Why Selleck took a break from the show

Not many know this, but the star of the show at one point during filming, decided he needed to take a break from his hit show. Apparently, filming took a toll on Selleck’s personal life and he was finding it hard to find the right work-life balance.


Selleck who spent most of his days and hours on set, took a break from filming when daughter, Hannah was born. Family quality time was on the top of his list.

He loves Westerns

We’ll never really know if the actor regrets not being able to star in the 1981 film, Indiana Jones Raiders of the Lost Ark  when he was offered the lead role before Harrison Ford was.


However, Tom did get to enjoy starring on some Westerns including the 19th century historical film, Quigley Down Under, The Shadow Riders, The Sacketts, and Last Stand at Saber River. He loved the outdoors so this was no coincidence.

What a man

Selleck is an enthusiastic philanthropist. He is part of many boards including The Joseph & Edna Josephson Institute of Ethics, the Character Counts Coalition and serves as a spokesperson for the National Fatherhood Initiative, which promotes increased fatherhood involvement in their children’s lives.


He is also a big supporter of the military and contributes greatly to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund. He was also spokesman for the Los Angeles Mission and chairman of the Skin Cancer Foundation.

His marriage advice

Unlike many of his fellow actors and co-stars, the heartthrob has surprisingly only been married twice. Despite his confusing image, he always knew that he wanted to settle down and lead a low-key life.


After being married for 30 years, Selleck is definitely someone to take good marital advise from. When he was once interviewed and asked whether he ha any tips for a successful marriage he said: “It’s important to nurture your marriage. I think wanting time away from work has been good for that.”

All grown up

Tom Selleck turned 70 two years ago, which is a defining moment in a man’s life. The actor once said in an interview that the first time he felt like a real grown up was when his father sadly died in 2001.


“I had had a lot of leadership positions, I had been in the military… but you know, in my case, when my father died, I go, ‘There’s nobody to go to for fatherly advice. You’re on your own, pal.'” It seems like Selleck is pretty satisfied with his age and everything he’s been through both professionally and personally.


If there was one thing that was mostly important to the star when his daughter, Hannah, was born, was to keep her as far as possible from the spotlight. The 28-year-old equestrian has taken after her dad in terms of how hard she works.


She might have been born into a superstar family, the young girl did not follow in her dad’s footsteps. She had a pretty normal childhood growing up on the 20-acre far away from the spotlight. Hannah spends most of her time practicing her horse riding.

Down to earth

Hannah’s parents always encouraged her to stay true to what she loves and pursue a career in something she is passionate about. They also encouraged her to stay in school and have a normal routine as a child.


When she finally found what she loved most, and that was riding horses, it was hard at first to find the balance between sport and life. It was likely her dad’s decision to spend more time with his family and to keep away from the red carpets that made her become so down-to-earth.

Farm life

Tom Selleck has made a very conscious decision when he decided earlier in his life that he wasn’t going to live where all the big shots live.


He wanted a more of a low-key lifestyle and a relaxed environment for raising his family. His estate sits on 65-acres of land which includes an extensive avocado farm and a horse corral.

Selleck’s secret project

The mustachioed private investigator who was extremely successful in the ’80s and the ’90s and had a great run also later on Friends, has decided to have a small and less time consuming career change when he turned to farming.


When he was still a big shot During his time on Magnum, the star purchased a secluded ranch. After he added all the standard celebrity features such as the helicopter pad and tennis court, he cut out a small piece of land dedicated solely to his 20-acre farm of avocados. Selleck loves his avocados as well as cultivating them.

Hannah loves the farm life

His daughter, Hannah, who grew up in a very supportive home and always felt the freedom to go her own way loves life on the farm. She splits her time between Florida, New York and Hidden Valley.

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Since her dad shoots his series, Blue Bloods in New York, he also commutes to L.A. to see his daughter. Hannah really gets the best of both worlds of studying in the city and going back home to the farm where her biggest love is – her horses of course.


There’s no doubt that Matthew Perry is probably the funniest of the group of Friends, and he especially made everyone laugh when he didn’t get things right in the script or messed up on purpose.

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In one episode from season five, Selleck, who played the role of Richard Burke, confesses to Monica that he still loves her. Once he says his famous line, Chandler bursts in to interrupt the scene and says: “What the **** are you doing?!” Not everyone sees it because it was obviously cut out, but Selleck couldn’t hold himself from cracking up.

How he became Friends with Courtney

Speaking of Friends, Tom Selleck was not worried not even one bit about working with Courtney Cox when he was offered to guest star on the show, as the two actors had already done a screen test in the past.


The test had been for the film Folks, though Cox did not get the part as she was deemed too young. Selleck was impressed with her reading and knew he could easily work with her. Their chemistry was so believable that they were offered to feature on the cover of TV Guide together, but it didn’t work out eventually.

A veteran poster boy

In order to really understand where the actors’ important values rose from, you really need to know his past. Selleck is one of many Hollywood stars who served their country. The Magnum P.I. spent six years of his life in the California National Guard between 1967 and 1973 where he served in the 160th infantry regiment.


While serving the country, he wasn’t allowed to keep his signature mustache, but he did make it to the recruiting posters. On his time in the army, the actor confessed: “I am a veteran, I’m proud of it,” Tom Selleck says. “I was a sergeant in the U.S. Army infantry, National Guard, Vietnam era. We’re all brothers and sisters in that sense.”

Sergeant Selleck

For six years Tom served as a sergeant in his unit, however, his time in the army didn’t come at the best time of his acting career. Selleck was so devoted that he literally left a six-month contract he had signed with 20th Century Fox to join the military, only to be let go for good when he returned. He didn’t let his disappointment in Fox stop him from pursuing his real dream.


It took over a decade of commercials and television gigs, but the actor finally got his big break with magnum P.I. In fact, the show was originally supposed to depict Vietnam veterans in a good and positive light and how they were adjusting to post-war life.

Conflicting schedules

Among the many actors who auditioned for the hit movie was Tom Selleck. Director, Steven Spielberg suggested George Lucas to cast Harrison Ford but Lucas wanted Selleck.

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The actor went in for an audition for the lead role in Indiana Jones, however, due to conflicting filming schedules, he couldn’t take on the desired role. The Marlboro Man at the time had already signed with CBS and couldn’t get out of the contract. Six weeks before the filming started, the producers hired Harrison Ford and the rest is history.

Lending his voice

It was only natural for the actor to turn to grab career opportunities and he also did some voice over work for the mini documentary series that was aired on the Discover Channel called North America.


The show first aired in May of 2013, and included seven episodes of the beauty and nature of North America. Selleck, like everything else he did in his career, took on the part very seriously and made the series come to life with his interesting voice and touching narration.

His dance with a Princess

This dance Tom Selleck will never forget. The late Princess and her then husband, the Prince of Wales were invited as guests at a gala dinner that was thrown at the White House.


Diana, who was 24 years old at the time, danced with a couple of Hollywood’s leading men at the gala including John Travolta and Tom Selleck himself. Needless to mention that the Magnum P.I. star looked dashing while dancing with the stunning princess.