Anything for his friends. Milo Ventimiglia has been making audiences cry for six years on NBC’s This Is Us, but he couldn’t turn down a short gig on Amazon’s The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel because he’s loyal to the showrunners.
Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and her husband, Daniel Palladino, are behind the Emmy-winning comedy about a 1950s housewife who becomes a standup comic. “They were the ones who really gave me my break,” Ventimiglia, 44, said during a Tuesday, January 4, appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. “They’re the ones who kind of put me on the map with Gilmore [Girls] and with Jess.”
The California native had a few TV gigs with guest starring roles on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Saved by the Bell: The New Class, but his arc as Jess Mariano, Rory’s bad boy boyfriend on Gilmore Girls, was the first gig to give him a chance to shine. He appeared on the WB dramedy from 2001 to 2006, and he made an appearance in the 2016 Netflix revival, A Year in the Life. He still feels indebted to the Palladinos.
“They are the kinds of people that for me, I was, like, one, I’m going to know them the rest of my life; and two, anytime they call, I’ve got to be there,” the Emmy nominated actor explained. “So, if they’re like, ‘Hey Mi, why don’t you come in and a small bit on the show we’re working on,’ ‘Great!’ ‘Hey if you could take us to the airport,’ ‘Sure!’ Like, whatever you need, fake Mom and Dad.”
The Heroes alum was spotted filming the period series in New York City over the summer opposite star Rachel Brosnahan, but Amazon has kept details about his character under wraps.
“You have to see it in context because it’s actually a very different thing we’re doing with him,” Daniel said while at the Nantucket Film Festival via TVLine in June. “We needed someone of his caliber and his handsomeness, so we asked Milo to do it.”
The Rocky Balboa star told host Jimmy Fallon that he didn’t even stop to read the material before signing on.
“It’s one of those things where you don’t really think about the script because you just trust and you know it’s going to be great. It’s going to be golden,” Ventimiglia said, adding that his Gilmore Girls experience prepared him for Maisel dialogue.
He continued, “Back in the days of Gilmore, I mean, we had these massive, massive scripts and that, for me, felt like a proving ground as an actor to really soak in the work, really understand the poetry of it, and then deliver it. [I] put what I can on it to make it come out natural because the way they write is definitely prose. It’s incredible.”
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel season 4 premieres on Amazon Friday, February 18.