Tom Selleck is a powerful actor with an extensive history in Hollywood. He’s been acting since 1969, playing the likes of “Jed Andrews” in The Young and the Restless, “Peter” in Three Men and a Baby, and everything in between.
Selleck’s most recent role, and the one we’re here to talk about, is police commissioner Frank Reagan on Blue Bloods. But, Selleck has done more than play Frank Reagan. Selleck is responsible for shaping who Frank Reagan is as a character. Read on to find out how.
As a police commissioner, Frank Reagan has a ton of responsibility. To get to that level, you’d have to play your cards near-perfectly but Selleck didn’t want Reagan to seem perfect. He needed flaws.
Selleck tells Parade:
“You never stop being a dad even though your kids are grown. Look, Frank’s flawed. I’ve worked very hard to make him flawed because he’s not easy to work for. He takes things out on his people and his family sometimes, and yet people like him.
That’s the best kind of character to play. He tries to do the right thing. There aren’t a lot of good, strong, examples of patriarchs trying to do the right thing on television.”
Blue Bloods is still alive and kicking, moving through the tenth season. Apparently, at one point, Selleck had only signed for a year. Selleck talked to Deadline about his decision to move forward, saying:
“I signed up for a year because that’s what they were offering. I love the show. Don’t tell CBS that because I got to be a good negotiator.”
He went on to say:
“Let me say that it’s not like you can get a new detective and bring him to the family dinner table. These people are related. So, as long as my fellow actors wanted to come back, and that was my only real criteria, I was coming back.”
As the fans of Blue Bloods know, Frank is a strong leader of few words. But, the Frank we see on screen isn’t the Frank that always was, according to Selleck in an interview with TV Insider. Selleck says:
“There were a couple of early scripts when I would be barking out orders: ‘Send eight cars there! Do this! Do that!’ I said to the producers, ‘I don’t have to prove I’m the boss. I am the boss, or you wouldn’t have hired me.’ I can play that serious gravitas, but I’m happy that when [executive producer] Kevin Wade came in, he gave Frank some humor.”
When TV Insider asked Selleck if he enjoyed playing Frank, the actor admitted that he enjoyed the challenge of the role, saying:
“I’m not bored at all. He’s a fascinating character and a very difficult acting challenge. A good commander can’t show anxiety, worry, or weakness when he’s in front of his people. The challenge as an actor is how do I let the audience know how concerned Frank is about the people he leads, while playing a character who has to put on a command face.”