Since the heartbreaking season one finale aired in March, fans have been theorizing about the way in which Ventimiglia’s beloved character, Jack Pearson, passed away.
“The number one comment I get is, ‘tell me how you died,’ which stung a little bit when I would first get that question,” Ventimiglia, 39, told PEOPLE and Entertainment Weekly Editorial Director Jess Cagle for the latest episode of The Jess Cagle Interview.
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The day after the finale was televised, Ventimiglia recalled a viewer asking about father of three Jack’s on-screen death, which shook the actor emotionally.
“I remember the first time it happened was the day after the finale and I was taking a meeting and I was walking across the studio lot and a guy said to me, ‘Hey man, great show. … I was a little bummed, though. Last night, we couldn’t see how you died,’ ” Ventimiglia remembered the man telling him.
At that moment, Ventimiglia “stopped and I walked over and I put my hand out and I said, ‘I’m Milo.’ He said, ‘Hey, I’m Jim.’ I said, ‘Jim, I want you to think about what you just said. You’re upset you didn’t see a man die. I’m that man. Think about that.’ ”
- Watch The Jess Cagle Interview: Milo Ventimiglia, available now, on the new People/Entertainment Weekly Network (PEN). Go to people.com/PEN, or download the PEN app on your favorite mobile or connected TV device.
While Ventimiglia understands that loyal fans want the mystery behind Jack’s death to be revealed sooner than later, he vows waiting for the answer to the burning question will be worth it.
“I get that it’s fresh because TV audiences are savvy. Especially in the world that we live in today — with social media and digital and internet — everybody wants all the information. They want it now,” he explained
“I feel like this show is getting back to that appointment television where you’re going to clock in once a week, you’re going to pay attention, and then guess what? You’re going to wait one more week, just seven days. So that information, that want to, that desire to say, ‘I want to know how Jack died,’ well, you’re just going to have to wait and be patient,” he said, and added, “Because when the answers come, you’ll be satisfied.”
This Is Us returns for season 2 this fall on NBC.
—With NATALIE STONE