Justin Hartley, who stars as Kevin on This Is Us, had a premonition about the show’s impact after he shot the pilot for the NBC drama.
“I told Dan [Fogelman, creator/executive producer] that I think this show is going to change people’s lives,” Hartley tells Soap Hub.
The actor recalls the show’s creator acknowledging that the program was very good, but he wasn’t sure about it making the kind of impact that Hartley sensed it would.
As fans of the show know, This Is Us became not only an overnight sensation and a water cooler program — but it also became one that families watch and discuss together.
“I was right,” Hartley humbly says about his belief in the time-jumping drama. “It transcends a television show. [Fans] have told me, ‘My son’s off with his friends’ or ‘my teenager daughter’s off on another planet’ or ‘my husband’s working a lot and I have three jobs and we don’t have time, we don’t know each other, but we all sit down and watch this show.'”
The actor says that families who watch This Is Us will talk about the show and the emotional fallout from the storylines together. “That conversation evolves into them talking about their own families and their own lives. That’s more than a television show. That’s…everything.”
Hartley’s so insightful about the show and its impact, he says he doesn’t mind at all going on the talk show circuit to not just promote the hit series, but to celebrate its impact. “I’ll do all the talk shows,” he chuckles.
This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.