Tom Selleck discusses why he quit ‘Magnum, P.I.,’ tells about the challenges of fame

Tom Selleck may be one of Hollywood’s biggest names, but the actor says he’s just as happy when he’s out of the spotlight.

In an interview with People published Tuesday, the 75-year-old actor opened up about his personal life and why he decided to take a break from acting at the height of his fame.

“I’m a fairly private person,” said Selleck, who has starred on the show “Blue Bloods” since 2010. “And I’ve always treasured the balance between work and time with my family. It’s always about them.”

The actor added that his personal relationships and ranch “keep me sane.” Selleck has been married to Jillie Mack since 1987, and the couple share daughter Hannah Margaret, 31. Selleck was first married to Jacqueline Ray, with whom he shares son Kevin, 54.

“I do grunt work and I make the rounds,” Selleck said of his ranch in Ventura, Calif. “I like watching things grow. It’s a retreat.”

The magazine reports that Selleck was at the peak of his popularity when he decided to leave the long-running crime series “Magnum, P.I.,” on which he starred from 1980 to 1988.

Selleck said he stepped away from acting in order to lead a fuller life.

“I quit ‘Magnum,’ not because I didn’t like it or I was tired of it,” he said. “I was tired from it. And I wanted a three-dimensional life because I didn’t have one.”

The actor also wasn’t too keen on the challenges that come with fame.

“I knew intellectually what it would mean in terms of being a public person, but until you’ve lived it, there’s no way to understand it,” he said. “I had a feeling of, ‘I don’t think I’m cut out for this.’ ”

According to People, Selleck’s sudden withdrawal from the spotlight stirred heads as his one-year hiatus became much longer.

“I put up with the articles that said he’s disappeared, he’s done,” Selleck continued. “And you do get done, I’m well aware of that. It was a big lull, but it put a lot of things in perspective.”

Selleck added he takes pride in what he’s accomplished — both onscreen and off.

“I’m proud of my work, I still love what I do, and I have my family,” he said. “I’ve been enormously fortunate.”