Mandy Moore admits that "This is Us" makes her cry too

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19 September 2017

NBC, Tuesday, Sept. 26, 9/8c

By Kellie Freeze

Last year’s breakout hit This Is Us introduced the lovably complicated Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and Rebecca Pearson (Mandy Moore) and their “Big Three.” The smash series, which returns to NBC on Tuesday, follows the family at watershed moments in their lives.

Series star Mandy Moore explains that the show has found success because it explores the universal truth of the importance of family. “It is fundamentally about the family dynamic and how our childhood, and our parents, and the bonds that we form with them and our siblings — if we have them — fundamentally shape who we are as people,” she says. “The good, the bad and sort of everything in between.”

In the season finale, the modern-day storyline left Randall (Sterling K. Brown) and his wife contemplating adoption, Kevin (Justin Hartley) starting production on a major motion picture, and Kate (Chrissy Metz) deciding to pursue a career as a singer. For this timeline, Season 2 will pick up a few months later, on the trio’s 37th birthday.

Also in the finale, the strained relationship of Jack and Rebecca came to a head with an argument that was gutting to watch. But Moore says filming the difficult scene “was satisfying because I knew that we were building to it. We knew very early on that the season was going to culminate with this sort of separation and this big fight.” In Season 2, the 1989 timeline will open the day after, as the couple begins a marital separation. “You can forgive, but I don’t know if you ever forget,” muses Moore.

As the series marches forward with each character at a crossroads, Moore and her cast members marvel at the critical reception This Is Us has received. “I don’t think any of us could have predicted that we would be sitting here this time a year later, and Emmy nominations, and sort of just the wholehearted embrace that people have shown the show. But I think we knew from the pilot script that this was an incredibly special show.”

Moore shares that she’s not immune to the series’ wonderfully cathartic storylines, crafted by series creator Dan Fogelman. “Every script that we get, we’re floored constantly,” she shares. “I wrote Dan after I read the second script and I was like, ‘Dan, Episode 2, I’m sobbing.’ And he’s like, ‘Mandy, I think we have a toxic relationship because all I do is make you cry.’ I’m like, ‘Me and the rest of the country, Dan.’”
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