There's one problem for NCIS: Hawaii to bring any Magnum PI characters in (and it's not the networks)

Fans of Magnum PI would love to see some of its characters appear on NCIS: Hawaii but there's a major block to that happening.
MAGNUM P.I. -- "The Retrieval" Episode 515 -- Pictured: (l-r) Zachary Knighton as Orville "Rick" Wright, Stephen Hill as Theodore "TC" Calvin -- (Photo by: Zack Dougan/NBC)
MAGNUM P.I. -- "The Retrieval" Episode 515 -- Pictured: (l-r) Zachary Knighton as Orville "Rick" Wright, Stephen Hill as Theodore "TC" Calvin -- (Photo by: Zack Dougan/NBC) /

With Magnum PI ending its run, that leaves NCIS: Hawaii as the big TV crime show set in this tropical state. So is there a potential for some Magnum characters to pop up on NCIS: Hawaii? Sadly, there’s a major block for that. 

CBS shows did have a tendency to cross over, as Magnum PI did a memorable two-part team-up with Hawaii Five-0. That was a fun way to mix the characters up and the potential for more until CBS canceled Magnum PI in 2022. 

With NBC picking up the series, it seemed to block any chances of crossovers, as cross-network ones are rare. An exception was when Chicago PD’s Hailey Upton did a stint on CBS’s FBI. However, both shows are produced by Wolf Entertainment, making it much easier to mix up characters. 

With Magnum PI, it’s tougher as the NCIS and Magnum worlds didn’t seem to mix up as well. It has been confirmed the La Mariana bar set will be used on NCIS: Hawaii but changed into a new location. Yet fans would love to see characters mixing it up.

It doesn’t even have to be Magnum or Higgins, as the NCIS gang could hang out at Rick’s. Or they need TC to give them a ride to a crime scene. The most obvious would be Katsumoto popping up as a cop on a case to clash with them a bit. 

So is there a chance for any Magnum characters to appear on NCIS: Hawaii? The truth may bum some fans out. 

What are the chances of Magnum characters appearing on NCIS: Hawaii? 

Speaking to TVLine, Magnum PI showrunner Eric Guggenheim had to break it to fans that while he’d love for a chance to bring some Magnum characters to NCIS: Hawaii, there are major legal blocks. 

"UTV [Universal Television] would have to have to sign off on any Magnum characters appearing on a series that’s fully owned by CBS."

There may have been a mild chance if Magnum was still on CBS, but the move to NBC complicated matters. There was a case of Larry Manetti (who starred in the original Magnum PI) making a cameo on the new series as boxing promoter Nicky “The Kid” Demarco, a character he’d played on Hawaii Five-O. But Guggenheim explained that “CBS owns that character [Nicky], and they were cool with allowing us to continue using him even after the show got moved to NBC.”

So, as much as fans would love to see some Magnum guys popping up with the NCIS: Hawaii crew, the studio rights are going to block those off, so any crossovers are only a dream for fans of both shows.

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NCIS: Hawaii Season 3 premieres on Monday, Feb. 12 at 10/9c on CBS.