The ‘NCIS’ franchise has been one of America’s favorite series for a while now.
The CBS franchise which began with its eponymous debut “NCIS” led to two more installments. This includes NCIS: Los Angeles,” and “NCIS: New Orleans” with both hitting the big screens later on.
All three received several critical acclaims and positive responses from viewers when they aired and ranked the top ten most-watched series on television.
On April 23, 2021, CBS announced that they will be adding a new spinoff to the previous installments titled “NCIS Hawai’i.”
The series will also go against the norm by introducing the first female lead character in the franchise’s history. Yay!
Keep reading for more information below.
Who Is Vanessa Lachey?
Vanessa Lachey was born on November 9, 1980, at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines. She is the daughter of Helen Ramos Bercero and Vincent Charles Minnillo, an ex-member of the Airforce.
Due to the nature of her father’s job, Vanessa attended seven different schools while growing up. Along the line, she picked up the pageantry and excelled quite well at it.
She later ventured into acting, as she started featuring in small roles in numerous television shows, including “That’s Life,” “City Girls,” “30 Rock,” “The Bold and the Beautiful,” “Psych,” “Hawaii Five-O,” “Maybe It’s Me,” and “How I Met Your Mother.”
Lachey attained prominence when CBS cast her as the lead in the fourth series in the “NCIS” franchise.
A Female Lead Character Was A Long Time Coming
When the studio announced Lachey would star in the new franchise, many fans were skeptical about her ability and what she had to offer on the show. They worried that she was nothing but a beauty queen, even though she is no longer a newbie in the entertainment industry.
However, Executive Producer Jan Nash refuted those claims by heaping praises on Lachey in a recent interview.
“One of the great things about Vanessa is she very much seems like she’s in charge of the team, but she’s doing it her way, which makes the point about what it means to be a woman in this kind of world better than any words we could use,” Nash spoke on a Television Critics Association Zoom panel.
He further stated that a female-led NCIS was long-anticipated and decided that it was no biggie.
“It seems like a long time ago when we started talking about the idea of developing a new version of this franchise set in Hawai’i,” Nash said. “When we did start talking about it, what we wanted to do was figure out how we could make it feel different than the other three very successful series that have preceded us. We get no points for landing on the obvious solution, which is a female team leader,” he concluded.
All The Major Female Cast
In the spin-off, Lachey plays Jane Tennant, the first female Special Agent in Charge of the NCIS office at Pearl Harbor.
Tennant is a single mother trying to strike a balance between her personal life and her job. Executive Producer and co-creator Matt Bosack said Tennant strongly influences her team.
“One of the strengths of it was building a team that has specific and unique skills, specific and unique quirks and backgrounds, but also can exist as a family,” Bosack said.
“Because we’re set in Hawai’i, we knew very early on we wanted to have somebody opposite of Tennant, who is local to the islands, somebody who can kind of go undercover, who has a unique point of view and experience. And that became Kai Homan.”
Alex Tarrant plays Kai. Other female characters in the series include Lucy Tara (Yasmine Al-Bustami) and Kate Whistler (Tori Anderson).
Lachey Is Grateful For Her New Role
When “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “NCIS: New Orleans” premiered, many people followed the shows because of the “NCIS” brand.
If the same happens for the new series, Lachey would be further thrown into the limelight. While reflecting on her role, Lachey stated she does not take it lightly.
“It’s time,” Lachey said. “I love that Matt, Chris [Silber], and Jan are the ones to take the lead on this. There are female NCIS stacks out there. They just aren’t on TV. So, for me to be the one to represent that, I’m honored. I’m humbled. It’s something I don’t take lightly, and I’m grateful for every day.”