NCIS: Hawaii has found its lead.
Vanessa Lachey has been tapped to headline the latest spinoff in the years-long franchise, becoming the first female lead in one of its shows.
Lachey will play Jane Tennant, the first female Special Agent in Charge of NCIS Pearl.
Tennant and her team will “balance duty to family and country, while investigating high-stakes crimes involving military personnel, national security and the mysteries of the island itself,” according to CBS.
Matt Bosack (SEAL Team) wrote the pilot along with NCIS: New Orleans‘ Jan Nash and Chris Silber.
All three will are also attached as EPs, while Larry Teng (Supergirl, SEAL Team) will direct and EP.
Lachey is well-known as a host on TV screens, but she has acted in several projects, including Hawaii Five-0, Dads, and BH90210.
She also appeared on Dancing With the Stars Season 25 as a contestant and is a co-host on Netflix’s breakout dating series, Love is Blind.
Her most recent TV stint was on FOX’s Call Me Kat as Tara Barnett. That show is on the bubble for renewal or cancellation.
On the big screen, Lachey has appeared in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer and Disaster Movie.
The original NCIS has been led by Mark Harmon since it kicked off in 2003, while NCIS: Los Angeles has been led by Chris O’Donnell and LL Cool J since it launched in 2009, and finally, Scott Bakula has led NCIS: New Orleans since 2014.
That’s not to say there have not been female lead characters in the franchise, but Hawaii will be the first series in the franchise headlined by a female.
NCIS: Red, which was in the works in 2013, and it was set to be co-led by Kim Raver and John Corbett, but CBS ultimately decided to pass on the series after a backdoor pilot did not meet expectations.
News of NCIS Hawaii broke in February, and CBS pulled the trigger on a formal pickup earlier this month.
The news comes as NCIS: New Orleans prepares to air its final episodes ever since CBS pulled the plug on it.
NCIS: Hawaii joins a packed roster at CBS for the 2021-22 TV season that includes The Equalizer Season 2, FBI Season 4, NCIS Season 19, Young Sheldon Season 5, The Neighborhood Season 4, and Bob Hearts Abishola Season 3.
In addition to New Orleans, CBS has canceled MacGyver and Mom.
The jury is still out on United States of Al, B Positive, SEAL Team, All Rise, The Unicorn, Clarice, and EVIL.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.