This Is Us came to NBC last season, and quickly secured a devoting, loving fan base. Starring Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglia, This Is Us pulled in close to 13 million viewers for the season 1 finale last March. The second season kicked off a couple weeks ago, and has quickly regained the position of our favorite show on air.
We love that each episode is filled with deep emotions, big discussions and controversial topics that are rarely talked about with such honestly and rawness. Drugs addiction, adoption, cancer, body image issues and alcoholism are just some of the themes that play out in the series. The final scene of each episode offers us a profoundly emo summary that pulls at our heart strings and makes us feel all the feels.
The show owes at least half of its success to its fantastic cast. Each character has been so elaborately developed, so humanely crafted, that we can’t help but feel personally linked to them. The show has been able to script such a real-life masterpiece; the fact that we can relate to the Pearson gang so effortlessly is a testament to its writers and producers, as well.
With season two promising to answer some lingering questions we have about the storyline, this is a perfect time to delve into the lives of the real lives of the cast. Prepare to be surprised, here are the 15 Things Even Die-Hard Fans Do Not Know About The ‘This Is Us’ Cast
15. Chris Sullivan Wears A Fat Suit
Chris Sullivan, who plays Toby on This is Us, is naturally slimmer than the character he portrays. In the show, Toby is fitted with a fat suit, a fact that left fans with mixed emotions. When the news hit, some people found it was dishonest of the producers to not just cast a plus-sized man for the role. Others supported the alterations, supporting the fact that he really was the right person to play the role (we think so too!). Despite the controversy, the show is making waves for bringing weight and body issues out into open dialogue, something that not many programs have managed to effectively do in the past. We are happy that Toby is part of this great show, with or without his fat suit.
14. Milo Ventimiglia Is Single
How? Why? It’s both wonderful and surprising that heartthrob Milo Ventimiglia is not attached. The babe behind adored patriarch Jack Pearson, Milo tends to keep his dating life pretty private and low-key. In the past, he has dated co-stars Alexis Bledel and Hayden Panettiere, but has since said that dating people you work with is a bad idea. Too bad. We really hoped that an off-screen romance would develop between he and on-screen wife Mandy Moore. Doesn’t look like that’s going to happen any time soon, folks. Mandy has recently moved in with her long time partner, boyfriend Taylor Goldsmith. We’ll keep our ears open for any romantic updates, but until then, we can still dream that he’ll be ours one day. Cause come on! Look at him, any girl would be so lucky to have him!
13. Mandy Moore Has A Ton Of Famous Exes
One thing that Mandy Moore has no shortage of? Famous ex-boyfriends! The pretty singer-turned-actress has had a very colourful dating history, with famous exes that include Wilmer Valderrama, Andy Roddick, Zach Braff and the late DJ AM. She married musician Ryan Adams in 2009, but the pair drifted apart pretty quickly into their relationship and filed for divorce in 2015. Her luck with men continues onto the screen; despite the occasional fights between Jack and Rebecca, their bond was strong and their marriage was the priority for both of them. We are still waiting for more follow up on Jack’s death in season two. Hopefully Rebecca doesn’t have new partners every year just like Mandy Moore, cause we don’t think our hearts can actually take that.
12. Justin Hartley Was A Soap Opera Legend
Justin Hartley is best known these days for his role as Kevin on This Is Us, but before landing this role, he was a pretty big deal in the soap opera world. He got his soap debut on NBC’s fantasy soap opera Passions, where he played Fox Crane from 2002-2006. Later, he would appear on The Young and The Restless for two years, ending in 2016. His soap opera passion doesn’t stop at his acting history. He was married to Passions co-star Lindsay Korman (remember, Theresa Lopez-Fitzgerald?) from 2004-2012. He is now engaged to his The Young and The Restless costar Chrishell Stause. I guess his type is soap opera ladies? But honestly, we are so glad he broke through the soap opera glass and is now doing more serious and popular roles, cause I mean look at him, we definitely need to see more!
11. Sterling K. Brown Was In Army Wives
Although Sterling K. Brown’s career has been on fire the past couple of years, he had a series of long-running roles before he starred in The People V.S. O.J Simpson and This Is Us. From 2007 to 2013, he played Roland Burton in the Lifetime series Army Wives. Other notable appearances were in Supernatural, Person of Interest, and the film Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. All of his experience on set, paired with his phenomenal educational background, have turned him into a massively talented actor. He is definitely in his prime, and we expect to see him in other big roles soon. But for now, we are just so happy to enjoy our Randall moments! Cause after his 2017 Emmy win, we definitely know we’re going to be seeing Serling in many other successful projects.
10. Chrissy Metz Is Dating Cameraman Josh Stancil
Sadly, Chrissy Metz, who plays Kate Pearson, is not dating Chris Sullivan, the actor behind the character Toby, in real life. Although they seem to have perfect chemistry, Chrissy fell for another handsome man that she met while filming. Cameraman Josh Stancil and Chrissy have been dating during the series’ first season. The two seem to be a wonderful match; Josh is a nurturing, protective and supportive partner, and Chrissy has said that she is absolutely head over heels in love with him. He even offered to quit his position on the show to not have any conflict of interests. What a romantic gentleman! Where’s our Josh Stancil??? These two seem to be headed in the right direction, and we wish them all the best.
9. Jon Huertas Was In The Air Force
One of the most intriguing storylines on This is Us is the link between Miguel and Rebecca. When did they get together? What were the circumstances surrounding their relationship? We have so many questions! Real life actor Jon Huertas has a secret or two up his sleeve, as well. Like the fact that he was part of the United States Air Force for over 8 years. He was an aircraft nuclear and conventional weapons specialist during his time served. Looks like Sterling K. Brown is not the only smarty pants on set! This guy has some serious skills. The Puerto Rican actor is expected to make more regular appearances in season 2, so don’t forget to tune in and see the plot unfold!
8. This is Susan Kelechi Watson’s First Lead Role
Although Susan Kelechi Watson has been acting for over a decade, her first lead role is playing Beth on This is Us. She previously appeared on episodes of Law & Order, NCIS, and played Janet on Louie C.K’s comedic sitcom, Louie, for 12 episodes. Despite enjoying moderate success, nothing could have prepared her for the overnight success of her newest venture. This season, Beth and Randall focus on adopting a child, and growing their family. Not only that but Beth is a strong female lead and we definitely need more of that. They are working on delving into Beth’s backstory a little more, so that is something that will definitely shed some more light on their family dynamic! Beth is one of our favorite characters in the show, hands down.
7. Mandy Moore And Ryan Adams Got Divorced Last Year
Mandy Moore and Ryan Adams were a long time couple, whose six year marriage ended in divorce in 2016. Although they tried to keep the romance alive for some time, friends and family members agreed that the pair had been drifting apart for years. The split was amicable and really boiled down to the fact that they were two very different people leading very different lives. There were some original reports in the media that Adams was not on board with the divorce at first, but clearly they worked something out and went their separate ways. Mandy has been dating boyfriend Taylor Goldsmith since shortly after the divorce was filed, and the pair just moved in together. So we can image when talking about divorce on the show between Jack and Rebecca it must feel close to home for Mandy.
6. Sterling K. Brown Is A Genius
Not only is Sterling K. Brown an incredible actor, he is as smart in real life as the character he portrays on This Is Us. The actor that has stolen our hearts with his honest portrayal of Randall is an academic model with two degrees. He graduated from Stanford University with a B.A. in acting in 1998. He then went on to purse a Masters of Fine Arts at the University of New York. His original career plan was to go into business, but he quickly discovered that his true passion was for acting. It’s a good thing he stuck to his guns; his performances have been critically acclaimed, and he is the recipient of two Emmy awards, one for his performance in This is Us, and one for his role in The People Vs. O.J Simpson.
5. Chris Sullivan Is A Musician, Too
Chris Sullivan, other than being an incredibly hilarious actor, is also talented in the musical department. He has been playing in a jazz band with the same group of musicians for ages. His love of music is one of many things he has in common with his co-star, Chrissy Metz. The pair connected instantly when they met, making their on-screen chemistry that much more natural and authentic. In fact, they have even performed together at various clubs and bars, since they enjoy playing similar styles of music. While there is no romantic connection between the two (they are both happily attached) having an off-screen friendship has really helped them get into character on set. We hope to see his musical side on the show sometime! Maybe he can be backup to Kate in an episode!
4. Chrissy Metz is A Singer in Real Life
Chrissy Metz plays an aspiring singer in This Is Us, but in real life, she is an accomplished musician already. She has been singing her entire life, and is the lead singer of her band, Chrissy and the Vapors. Her band plays in clubs and bars, much like the character, Kate, is aspiring to do. This isn’t the only parallel between Chrissy and Kate. They are both 36 years old, and Chrissy is also working towards losing weight, as her character Kate is. She put her foot in her mouth during an interview in season one, saying that losing weight was in her contract. She later corrected this statement to reflect that she knew when she got the role that the character of Kate was eventually going to be losing weight, and she was also planning to do so in real life, so it complimented her goals.
3. Ron Cephas Jones Is Only 60 Years Old
Ron Cephas Jones, who plays Randall’s biological father, William, is actually not very old in real life. The actor is 60 years old, but the producers aged him to make him look like he was in his 70’s (the sickness obviously made him look older, too). He started acting in the mid 90’s, but didn’t have many roles until fairly recently. In the last few years, he has landed a few television roles, namely Romero in Mr. Robot and Bobby Fish in Luke Cage. His performance in This is Us got him nominated for an Emmy, and really put him on the map for talent. His character will sadly not be back, unless there are flashback moments, but he put in an epic and unforgettable performance is season one.
2. Lonnie Chavis Might Be The Next Big Thing
Lonnie Chavis, who plays 9-year-old Randall on This Is Us, is a young talent that might be the next big actor. The almost 10-year-old has already impressed quite a few people with his performance. He has landed a few small movie roles and a full time position in the up-and-coming television show, White Famous, scheduled to air at the end of 2017. Fans of This Is Us are loving the flashback templates that allow the writers to tell the story in a non-linear way. We get to revisit the Big 3 when they were children, and, teenagers. This helps to provide more complete and descriptive characters, which helps us love them even more. He’s definitely impressed us so far! These aren’t easy roles to play for kids and to see them excel is so exciting for them!
1. Milo Ventimiglia Was In Gilmore Girls
If hot dad Jack, played by Milo Ventimiglia, looks familiar, it’s because he’s starred in another super famous role. Although he’s all grown up now, he was one time Jess Mariano in Gilmore Girls. He was featured in the series for 5 years, from 2001-2006. As well as a small role in the revival (Too small if you ask me, #TeamJessandRory). Back then, he also developed a romantic relationship with his co-star, Alexis Bledel. The pair were actually quite serious about each other, and talked about marriage and children. After three and a half years together, they decided to call it quits. The breakup happened right around the time that Jess was written off the show, in 2006. They remained closed friends after the breakup and are still in touch with each other these days.
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