Justin Hartley considers himself a very lucky man.
ET's Cameron Mathison caught up with the This Is Us star on the red carpet at the Critics' Choice Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday, where Hartley opened up about landing the role of Kevin Pearson after years of acting in Hollywood.
"When I read the pilot and was lucky enough to get the role, and we shot the pilot and we saw the pilot, I thought, 'I was moved, and I just hope people respond to it the way I have,'" he shared of his first reaction to the series.
"It was one of those perfect storms -- the right time and the right show, and it's been wonderful," he added.
The emotional NBC drama definitely knows how to pull at fans' heartstrings, and Hartley said filming the series has affected him as well.
"We're talking about things that actually happen in real life and emotional things that couples go through," the 39-year-old actor explained. "There's death and there's loss, but there's also celebrations, right? I think any time you have a show that after you watch it, it sort of sits with you for a while and you take pause and you talk about it, yeah, it affects your life."
The family-centered series is nominated for Critics Choice Award for Best Drama. Hartley admitted that "it would be great" if the show won, but at the same time, he's simply just grateful for the recognition.
"Any time you're recognized for the work you're doing [is great], and I work with these actors, and they're phenomenal at their jobs," he said.
Hartley's on-screen parents, Milo Ventimiglia and Mandy Moore, also spoke to ET on the red carpet about the show's emotional aspect, and they revealed just how much the cast has bonded while filming.
"We love each other. It's very mutual," Moore gushed. "I think being a part of a show that's so emotionally connected to what's fundamentally important in life definitely spills out into our life with our families."