Milo Ventimiglia Explains the Power of Broadcast TV: ‘I’m Not Afraid of It’

Milo Ventimiglia Explains the Power of Broadcast TV: ‘I’m Not Afraid of It’

It’s no secret the TV landscape is changing. In fact, it’s all TV journalists can talk about — the amount of content and the endless way to consume it. But sometimes, it’s about going back to where it all started: broadcast TV.

“I think it’s about the accessibility. If you have rabbit ears on TV, you can watch broadcast,” says Milo Ventimiglia, who has had great success through his career, most recently leading six seasons of “This Is Us,” which wrapped its final season in May.

“The good thing about broadcast TV is it’s literally for everybody. Maybe you can’t dive deep into some real-life situations and subject matters that we all understand are happening because of standards and practices, but at the same time, you can still tell great stories and the quality can still be high,” the actor told Variety.
Ventimiglia knows it firsthand. He rose to fame in more than 30 episodes of the CW’s “Gilmore Girls” before landing the leading role of Peter Petrelli on NBC’s “Heroes,” appearing on 70 of the drama’s 77 episodes. Then in 2016, he joined “This Is Us,” as Jack Pearson, a part that earned him three lead actor Emmy nominations.

“I’ve done well on broadcast several times. I’m not afraid of it,” he says. “It’s funny how many actors become afraid of a long contract or a show that maybe they won’t be able to curse in or show nudity or other adult subjects. I’m not afraid of it. I think it’s good. I think it’s great to work. It’s great to have a job with storytelling of all different kinds. It also doesn’t diminish it because you can curse and show violence and show adult situations on a streaming platform or a cable network — it doesn’t mean because you can’t, the show’s any less than. Look at ‘This Is Us.’”

Milo Ventimiglia Explains the Power of Broadcast TV: 'I'm Not Afraid of It'

In fact, Ventimiglia’s next role is also in broadcast, as he’ll star in and produce ABC’s “The Company You Keep,” playing a con man named Charlie alongside Catherine Haena Kim and William Fitchner.

“Charlie is incredibly different than Jack, which is exciting but also, he’s a good, strong, male lead who has a complicated life and a great woman that he has to figure things out with,” he says.

While Ventimiglia is sure that people will miss Jack Pearson, just as he will, he didn’t feel pressure to find the perfect follow-up. Instead, he just found a good script with trustworthy people. (He had been looking forward to working with executive producer Jon M. Chu for some time.)

“Jack is a character and whatever I move on to next, that’s going to be its individual thing. People may fall in love with that character, they may be into it, they may go against it. And that’s OK. I’m in the middle of my career, I’ve got a long way to go. There’s going to be a lot of different characters.”

Milo Ventimiglia Worked His Way to Star on Hollywood Walk of Fame - Variety

Although playing the role of the “This Is Us” patriarch was an emotional roller coaster, he’s ready for the future.

“I feel very much like a snake molting its skin,” he says. “You’re ready to try on something new, grow something new. I think a lot of that is also what we explored of the character. The first three seasons was a lot of Jack discovery. I’m grateful for the experience but I think I’m ready to shed the skin of Jack and move onto something else, respectfully.”