'This is Us' taps emotions in primetime

Posted September 20

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— "This is Us," a new television drama that exposes the hardships and wonders of everyday life, premieres Tuesday night on NBC.

Trailers for the dramedy (part-drama, part-comedy) have promised an intimate, in-depth look into the lives of the main characters in the very first episode.

In a television landscape saturated with secrets and scandals, “This Is Us” is a different kind of show.

"I think people were wanting something like this show and they didn’t even know it," said star Milo Ventimiglia. "I think people are connecting to the trailer because they want to feel something that’s relative to their lives. They want to feel something that we all experience that is connective and real."

Ventimiglia plays Jack, the soon-to-be parent of triplets with his wife, Rebecca (Mandy Moore).

"Jack is an easy coat to put on and he’s an easy coat to wear," said Ventimiglia. "He’s a good guy, he loves his wife, he loves his kids, he does his best and he’s hopeful."

Hope is a recurring theme in the emotion-provoking show, where raw and painful honesty take center stage along with heartbreak and humor.

Behind the scenes, Moore, who has no children of her own, said going from no babies to three was a challenge. "I watched YouTube videos and interviewed friends of mine who have children," she said. "[For the part], I had to wear a 35-pound prosthetic belly!"

In the season premiere, Rebecca is shown giving birth. To make sure her acting was on par with the real thing, Moore had a medical coach on set with her during the childbirth scene to talk her through the process of having a baby - or, in this case, three.

This is just one example of the actors' dedication to purity and accuracy.

The show comes from the writer and directors of "Crazy, Stupid, Love," a romantic comedy that pulled on audiences' heartstrings back in 2011.

"The show sort of strikes a similar tone to the movie, which is one of my favorite movies, and people will be tickled," said Sterling K. Brown, who plays Randall, a father of two who tries to reconnect with his own dad in the new series. "People will be saddened by this show, but I think they’ll ultimately be uplifted by the stories of these characters."

"I think given the nature of the show and the revelation at the end of the first episode, there will be twists and turns and bigger reveals," hinted Moore.

"I feel like 'This is Us' has the potential to be something very special," added Brown. "I’m very excited to take people on what I think is a very authentic journey. Life has its ups and downs, and I think our show really does a good job of capturing what life is."

Make sure you have some tissues nearby when you tune in Tuesday at 10/9c.


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