The 32-year-old plays matriarch Rebecca Pearson in three different time periods: as a new mother, a mom of 9-year-olds and a grandmother. While filming with the child actors, Moore said she finds herself looking out for Mackenzie Hancsicsak, Parker Bates and Lonnie Chavis, who portray kid-aged Kate, Kevin and Randall, respectively. “We have three extraordinary young actors on the show, who have fantastic parents by the way. They’re very attentive,” Moore told Conan O’Brien on his eponymous late-night show on Wednesday, March 1. “I think it’s a lot of their first jobs for most of them, and anytime there’s a scene that requires them to eat, I have to remind them — Milo [Ventimiglia], who’s my husband on the show — we’re always like, ‘Guys, slow down because you guys don’t realize you’re committing yourself to eating that same amount for the entirety of the scene, which can sometimes be a couple hours.'”
What’s more, she even has to stop them from eating the set decor! “I remember we were shooting the Christmas episode, and there was some melted peppermints in a candy dish that wasn’t even from the prop department. Clearly, it was set decoration, and I turn my back for one second, and I turn back, and all of them have jammed peppermints in their mouths,” Moore joked.
When the show flashes back to her pregnancy and the children being born, the Walk to Remember actress has to work with babies, too. “I mean, we get to hold these newborn children, and I can’t believe their parents were willing to hand over their babies to me. I’m like, ‘Hi, I’m Mandy. I have absolutely no experience with small children,’ and they’re like, ‘Here’s my 2-week-old baby.’”
The former teen pop star — currently dating Taylor Goldsmith and previously married to Ryan Adams — has also gotten a few parenting lessons from the cast and crew. “I didn’t know how to change a diaper,” she said. “I had crew members showing me how to change a diaper. I’m terrible, but yes, it has sort of activated that maternal side of me that I’m totally ready to have kids now.”
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