Old Man Jack is coming back! Milo Ventimiglia’s This Is Us character didn’t live past his 50’s (Spoiler alert! He died in 1998 at age 54), but that doesn’t mean fans of the show won’t get to see him grow old.
On the second season of the hit NBC drama, a dream scene showed Jack and his wife Rebecca (Mandy Moore) together in the present day. It was a future flash forward for the deceased This Is Us character, and fans went crazy for it. Now, in a new interview with Variety, Ventimiglia reveals that viewers will see Jack’s story span several time periods—and there will even be more cameos by Future Jack in the third season.
For Season 3, This Is Us fans will find Jack’s life story in time periods spanning the 1960s through the 90s. While viewers will see Jack’s Vietnam days and his early courtship with Rebecca this season, Ventimiglia admits he looks forward to playing his character in the 1980s as well, as opposed to Jack’s darker, heavy drinking phase in the 1990s.
“We definitely like Jack and Rebecca in the 80s,” Ventimiglia told Variety. “I call him ‘Mustache Jack. ‘Mustache Jack’ is ‘Fun Dad.'”
But the actor revealed there will also be more appearances from the old man version of the Pearson patriarch.
“I already know a couple of moments where I’m with the adult ‘Big Three’ this year.”
The actor added that he “selfishly” wants more of those future-set scenes so he can work time with his adult co-stars, Justin Hartley. Sterling K. Brown and Chrissy Metz and “hopefully someday maybe Chris Sullivan and Susan Kelechi Watson.”
“That’s been the biggest heartbreak with the show is my experience through the character is limited to the time he was alive,” the Emmy-nominated This Is Us star admitted.
When it comes to playing “old” Jack, Ventimiglia told Entertainment Weekly he does time in a makeup chair for the lengthy transformation into the 73-year-old version of his character.
“I get to stand next to Mandy dressed as my aged version of Jack. Which I think is not only cool for the audience, but really cool for us just to think about what the life lived could have been. And then beyond that also, selfishly for me, I got to share the stage with actors I don’t get to usually spend time with.”
Ventimiglia also revealed that when it came to turning him into a 73-year-old man, the show’s makeup artist and effects team asked to see photos of his dad, who was close to that age. Ventimiglia said he sent photos of his father from different angles and “they imagined this idea of what I would look like in my seventies, and it was a whole three-hour process, with a wig.”
While This Is Us fans adore Future Jack, the writers on the show have a constant reminder that the beloved dad of three didn’t make it to the new millennium. Writers Isaac Aptaker and Elizabeth Berger actually keep Jack’s urn in their office.
“For all of our props that get carried through time, there’s different aged versions of it, so there’s actually multiple urns. We have an older one,” Aptaker told Variety. “It’s one of those objects that has so much meaning and is both sad but has this hope, too.”
This Is Us returns to NBC on Tuesday, Sept. 25.