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New 'Magnum P.I.' 2018: Meet The New "Thomas Magnum", Jay Hernandez

Jay Hernandez is the new "Thomas Magnum" in CBS' Magnum P.I..
October 14, 2019 - 15:26 / Clemens Fanger

Not everyone was convinced by the idea when CBS announced in 2018 that it would be bringing back the legendary 80's TV show Magnum P.I. with a new cast and look. But it turns out that the 'new' "Thomas Magnum" Jay Hernandez has won over lots of fans as the show is in its second season now.

Magnum P.I. has been back on the small screen for over a year now and Jay Hernandez, who plays "Thomas Magnum" seems to have gotten settled in his role. The audience for the reboot of the 80's classic (which starred Tom Selleck) has grown and people have started embracing Hernandez as the new "Thomas Magnum".

Magnum P.I.: Jay Hernandez previously starred in Crazy/Beautiful opposite Kirsten Dunst

But Hernandez did not just start out as an actor - in fact, he's been in the business for a while and has racked up quite the resume by now. After growing up in California, he was approached one day by a talent agent in an elevator and he started getting work as a model after that. His career took off 1998 when he was cast as "Antonio Lopez" in Hang Time, which ran on NBC until 2000. His first role in a major movie then came in 2000 when he starred opposite Kirsten Dunst in the teen-focused drama Crazy/Beautiful. He then had a small part in the 2001 horror film Joy Ride and then moved on to two roles in two sports movies: he appeared in The Rookie in 2002 and in 2004’s Friday Night Lights.

In 2005, Hernandez played the college student who is kidnapped by the killer in the horror classic Hostel, and he also starred in the sequel Hostel: Part II. Other roles include appearances in features such as World Trade Center, Lakeview Terrace, and Nothing Like the Holidays. But Hernandez was also busy working in TV. Until he got the lead as "Thomas Magnum", he also had roles in Nashville, Gang Related, and The Expanse. He most recently appeared on the big screen as Mila Kunis's love interest in Bad Moms and the sequel, A Bad Moms Christmas.

The new Magnum P.I. cast: Jay Hernandez, Perdita Weeks, Stephen Hill and Zachary Knighton.

Magnum P.I.'s Jay Hernandez is "a big fan of Tom and his portrayal of 'Magnum'"

At the beginning, Jay Hernandez had some doubts about taking the role as he admitted in an interview with the New York Daily News: "Initially, I was a little trepidatious myself about portraying such an iconic character". Seeing how beloved Tom Selleck still is after playing "Thomas Magnum IV" for so many years in the 1980's, that is quite understandable. But Hernandez is a fan of the original and he has treated the role with respect which his new fans love him for. 

"I watched it growing up as a kid and I was a big fan of Tom and his portrayal of Magnum. [...] We’ve also introduced the show to a whole new demographic and a whole new audience. I think that’s cool."

Magnum P.I. airs Fridays at 9pm (8 central) on CBS - stay tuned for more news about the show.