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EXCLUSIVE: Sterling K. Brown Talks Emotional Storylines on 'This is Us': 'It's Been Strangely Therapeutic'

by Zach Seemayer 8:03 PM PDT, October 30, 2016
Playing EXCLUSIVE: Sterling K. Brown Talks Emotional Storylines on 'This is Us': 'It's Been Strangely Therapeutic'

Sterling K. Brown has nothing but love and respect for the emotional experience of shooting his hit NBC drama, This Is Us.

Fresh off his Emmy Award win for his celebrated performance in The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, Brown has been sinking his teeth into the complex family dynamic of This Is Us, and the actor says working on the powerful series has been "really, really wonderful."

"It's been an embarrassment of riches, week in week out," Brown told ET at the GOOD + Foundation's first-ever Halloween bash at Sunset Gower Studios in Hollywood on Sunday. "We had a good pilot, [and] then [episodes] 102 and 103. Each episode is so good!"

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According to Brown, there's "a lot of levity on set" as a result of dealing with the dramatic nature of some of the show's heavy story lines. Ultimately, however, the actors "just try and take it one moment at a time and tell the story."

"The writers do such a great job. We just try to do them proud," he added.

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*Caution: Possible Spoilers Ahead*

In This Is Us, which tells the interweaving stories of the Pearson family in the past and present, Brown plays Randall, a man who was abandoned as a baby on the steps of a fire house and adopted by Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and his wife, Rebecca (Mandy Moore).

As an adult, Randall goes looking for his biological father, William Hill (Ron Cephas Jones), a former drug addict who is suffering from stage-4 stomach cancer. The two reconnect and Randall does everything in his power to get William treatment for his illness.

This Is Us recently dropped an emotional bombshell on its fans when it revealed that, in the present day, Jack is deceased. Additionally, in what seems to be the near future, Randall is shown packing up William's belongings -- presumably after his biological father died.

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For Brown, the theme of paternal loss hits especially close to home, and the actor said the story line can be "tough" for him.

"I lost my dad when I was a young man and so I feel, acutely, this sort of connection to fathers and father figures," Brown said, solemnly. "So it's been strangely therapeutic for me to go through this journey as Randall, [with] his daddy issues."

"I think about my dad all the time, and I know that he's smiling at the fact that I get a chance to do this part right now and go on this journey," he added. "I hope I just do him proud. That's all."

This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT, 8 p.m. CT on NBC.

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