‘This Is Us’ Originally Intended Jack and Rebecca Having Octuplets

For millions of fans all around the world, This Is Us is one of the greatest network dramas ever to air on television. For nearly five years, the show has enthralled audiences, bringing viewers to tears with the touching story of a family going through many trials and tribulations.

For hardcore fans, it might be hard to believe that This Is Us was actually intended to be a film project. However, according to a 2017 interview with the series creator, that is exactly what almost happened to This Is Us.

When did ‘This Is Us’ debut on television?

Milo Ventimiglia as Jack, Mandy Moore as Rebecca.
Milo Ventimiglia as Jack and Mandy Moore as Rebecca on NBC’s ‘This Is Us.’ | Maarten de Boer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank

In 2016, This Is Us debuted on NBC. The show, which stars major movie stars like Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglia, also introduced up and coming talents such as Chrissy Metz and Sterling K. Brown.

The series is based on a simple premise and follows the lives of two parents and their three children. By utilizing different time frames, showrunners are able to reveal different tragedies and major events in the lives of the family members, showing how the past shaped the family’s future.

Right away, This Is Us became a hit, and critics quickly realized that there was nothing else like it on television. It has been nominated for a slew of awards and taken home several, including top honors for Sterling K. Brown’s acting on the series.

Over the years, This Is Us has kept going strong, and with the fifth season set to debut in November, fans can look forward to many more good things still to come. 

Viewers love ‘This Is Us’

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There are not many television shows that can inspire audiences to gather around their TV’s on a weekly basis — but This Is Us has had that effect on millions of viewers. For many fans, the show is a throwback to television’s golden age, and viewers love debating the characters and situations presented in This Is Us, week after week.

The show has made a star out of Chrissy Metz, and solidified Mandy Moore’s role in pop culture. For viewers, however, it isn’t just the star power presented in This Is Us that makes it such a great show.

Rather, it is the way that it highlights the importance of family and details how the power of love can overcome all obstacles, no matter how tragic. While many television shows lessen in popularity over the years, This Is Us has remained one of television’s top performers. 

‘This Is Us’ was originally conceived as a movie

Fans and critics agree that This Is Us is one of the truly great television shows. However, there was once a real possibility that This Is Us would have ended up on the big screen.

In a 2017 interview with series creator Dan Fogelman, he admitted that when he first came up with the concept that turned into This Is Us, he visualized it as a film project rather than a television one.

He admitted that he had a story idea that revolved around a family that contained a reveal “at the end that they were octuplets born in the late ’70s or early ’80s.'” However, Fogelman stated that after writing nearly one hundred pages of the story treatment, it simply didn’t feel like a movie.

He explained: “The reason I was struggling with [the film] wasn’t the plot; it was about these characters and how I didn’t want to ‘beginning-middle- and-end’ them. I wanted to do this continuous story — which felt very much like the theme of the show.”

Fogelman adjusted his vision and began writing a treatment for a television show – and the series that audiences now know as This Is Us was born.