After the controversial departure of two of the show’s seasoned veterans, CBS announced on Wednesday that Meaghan Rath and Beulah Koale have joined the cast of Hawaii Five-O ahead of its eighth season. Additionally, recurring cast member Ian Anthony Dale (Adam Noshimuri) has been promoted to series regular after six seasons with the show.
Rath (Being Human, Secrets and Lies) has been cast in role of Tani Rey, a hotel pool lifeguard who was kicked out of the police academy even though she was first-rate candidate who ends-up be recruited by Steve McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin). Koale (Thank You For Your Service) is being brought on-board for the role of Junior Reigns, a former Navy SEAL who looks to McGarrett for a job with the hope of finding a way to apply his skills to fighting crime in his civilian life. Dale (Salvation) will be returning to his role of Adam Noshimuri, a trusted confidant and resource for the team who’s been recruited by McGarrett to work for Five-0. Dale has been with the series since its second season, and has appeared in over 30 episodes of the show.
The casting decisions are expected to go a long way towards addressing fans’ concerns over the lack of diversity and equity at the network, especially after it was announced that series regulars Daniel Dae Kim (Chin Ho Kelly) and Grace Park (Kono Kalakaua) would be departing the show after being unable to agree on new contracts. The story gained traction over social media as word spread that Kim and Park, both Asian-American actors, were making considerably less than their fellow cast mates.
The three will join series regulars O’Loughlin and Scott Caan (Danno), along with Chi McBride (Capt. Grover), Jorge Garcia (Jerry Ortega), Taylor Wily (Kamekona Tupuola), Kimee Balmilero (Dr. Noelani Cunha) and Dennis Chun (Duke Lukela), who will all return for the eighth season on Friday, Sept. 29 at 9 p.m. Hawaii Five-O is based out of CBS Television Studios and executive produced by Peter Lenkov, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, and Eric Guggenheim.