It felt like a warm family dinner at the Paley Center for Media's Blue Bloods event in New York City on September 22 — all hugs, smiles and mutual appreciation from actors Donnie Wahlberg, Bridget Moynahan and Tom Selleck, who play the Reagans, TV's newest clan of New York City cops.
"I joke a lot about Tom being like my dad," laughed Wahlberg. "And when I'm carrying on too much in between sets or making too many bloopers, he gives me the evil eye just like my dad!"
"They all look up to Tom," said executive producer Leonard Goldberg. "Somebody asked Donnie, 'Why'd you do this show?' and he said, 'Two reasons: Tom. Selleck.'"
"We're really bonded," Selleck said his new cast. "We all like each other, and that doesn't always happen in a series."
Bridget Moynihan, who plays the family's only daughter, agrees. "Tom and I have a nice father/daughter vibe on- and off-screen, and Donnie and I worked together before, so we already have the brother/sister dynamic," she said, giggling as Wahlberg jumped the velvet rope, grabbed a reporter's microphone and started to interview the youngest Reagan, Will Estes.
Creators Robin Green and Mitchell Burgess compared it all to another great television family they worked with: "The Sopranos was anti-heroes and these are heroes, but it's similar in that it just gelled. It felt good then, and this one feels the same," said Green.
Wahlberg, hoping for some overlap between his real and work families, had a casting suggestion as to who should play the deceased Reagan brother (in a flashback, of course). "I'm not sure if he'll appear, but I hope so because I have another actor in my family named Bob who played a role in The Departed with Mark [Wahlberg]. Or maybe Mark will come in and do a three-episode arc or something as the brother!"
Though a guest spot by a movie star can only help a new show, the star power, acclaimed writers and seemingly real affection among this ensemble makes it seem like Blue Bloods could become a weekly family event audiences will look forward to. "Nothing's a sure thing in television," said CBS president Les Moonves, "but this is pretty good."
Blue Bloods premieres Sept. 25, 10/9c, CBS
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