This Is Us has been widely considered the heir apparent to Parenthood, the heart-wrenching family drama that ended more than two years ago -- and with good reason! Both shows tug at your heartstrings, make you reach for those tissues and by the end of each episode, have you hugging your loved ones.
Parenthood stars Mae Whitman and Dax Shepard, who played Amber Holt and Crosby Braverman respectively, spoke with ET about the frequent comparisons between their beloved series and television’s newest hit.
When told that fans have been weeping just as much while watching This Is Us than they had when Parenthood was on, the 28-year-old actress was delighted.
“I love that. I’m glad there’s something else making people cry,” Whitman said.
Shepard also admittedly hadn’t seen This Is Us, but was equally glowing, saying he’s heard “it’s great.”
“I think it’s definitely on the table. I think once more time passes where we can tell a whole new set of different stories, we’ll get back into it,” Whitman said of the chances of another Parenthood installment.
Though she was unsure what a potential Parenthood reboot would look like -- if it would be a Netflix series or a movie, for instance -- Whitman was open to returning to the fray.
“I defer to [creator] Jason Katims on that one,” Whitman said. “There are so many things you could do because you have so many generations of stories being told. I’m always down!”
“He feels like my second father in real life,” Whitman said of her friendship with Shepard. “I call him ‘D.D.,’ that’s his nickname, and he calls me ‘B.B.’ It’s pretty twisted.”
Whitman shared that she’s often sought out “any kind of advice” that she’s needed. “He’s probably one of the smartest people I’ve ever met,” she continued. “I remember really early on, I played him in Scrabble and he kicked my a** so much it wasn’t even funny. It was like 1,000 points to 10. It was so bad.”
Shepard, who was accompanied by his real-life wife and co-star, Kristen Bell, was excited to reconnect with his Parenthood cast at the CHiPs premiere.
“I know Joy Bryant’s coming because we were married. She was to -- my TV wife!” the 42-year-old actor said, joking, “Sometimes TV marriages last longer than real marriages.”
CHiPs hits theaters Friday. This Is Us returns this fall on NBC.