You likely know Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum from the ’80s TV smash Magnum, P.I.. If you’re younger, however, you may recognize him instead as Dr. Richard Burke from Friends. Whichever role you’re most familiar with, though, the actor and producer is one of those in the public eye who keeps a very tight lid on his personal life. The 72-year-old has no social media presence, for instance, so you’re unlikely to ever see him post casual selfies online. But when he does shed some light on private things – his marriage, for instance – it is rather illuminating.
Believe it or not, Selleck actually started his working life as a male model – he was a good-looking guy in the 1960s. But like many others in that profession, he had dreams of making it big in the acting world. And Selleck slowly built up some success in that field. In between stints serving in the California Army National Guard, he made small appearances on television’s The Dating Game and also popped up in TV commercials, including one for Pepsi-Cola.
Then, as the ’60s turned into the ’70s, Selleck scored a considerable break in befriending a Hollywood icon. That’s because the famous actress Mae West picked him for a small role in the notorious sex comedy Myra Breckinridge, which was released in 1970. “I escorted her to a couple of premieres and she did hundreds of interviews where she mentioned me in the same sentence as Cary Grant,” Selleck told Pennsylvania newspaper The Morning Call in 1997. And from there on, Selleck’s name was connected to more and more movies.