Chris Sullivan interview: ‘This Is Us’

“‘This is Us’ is a handbook for living,” explains Chris Sullivan when describing the shocking Season 5 finale of NBC’s Emmy-winning drama. “Dan Fogelman has created this kind of handbook for relationships and he’s exploring every aspect of relationships. I think I realized early on, if he’s going to explore every aspect of a relationship, then he’s probably going to explore the dissolution of a relationship. Divorce or a split was going to have to play into it somewhere and we all could have guessed that it wasn’t going to be Randall (Sterling K. Brown) and Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson).”

Sullivan is nominated for Best Drama Supporting Actor at this year’s Emmys for playing Toby Damon, the wise-cracking husband of Kate Pearson (Chrissy Metz). In his exclusive interview with Gold Derby (watch the video above) he discusses his second Emmy nomination and what the future may hold for Toby in the upcoming sixth and final season of “This is Us.”

“This past year has demonstrated to us, if we didn’t know already, the importance of in-person, human connection,” Sullivan says while discussing the episode he submitted for Emmy consideration, “In the Room.” Toby is forced to anxiously wait in a hospital parking lot during the birth of his daughter in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. While there, he meets a man (played by Michael O’Neill) whose wife of 55 years is on a ventilator. “As we all have transitioned our life into this Zoom world, we were able to get a look at what that was like for people who are needing some kind of medical care during the pandemic.”

“This is Us” has been nominated for six Emmys in 2021 including Best Drama Series. Of the eight nominees, the NBC drama is the only one from a major network being recognized. “It’s hard to watch network television not be taken very seriously,” Sullivan comments. “There is a lot of great television being made, but especially ‘This is Us.’ We don’t have huge cinematic budgets. That has been the nomination that we are most excited about this year. That the show has been nominated for Best Drama.”

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UPLOADED Aug 11, 2021 10:56 am