Sterling K. Brown ‘Won’t Be Able to Stop’ Crying While Filming ‘This Is Us’ Finale: ‘It’ll Be Ugly’

Tissues for days. This Is Us fans are anticipating plenty of tears during the show’s final season, but Sterling K. Brown doesn’t think the finale will be any easier on the cast, either.

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“Once we start to get to, like, the last two or three episodes, there’ll be something that happens that I won’t be able to stop from happening, because I know I’m actually saying goodbye,” the Black Panther star, 45, said during the Tuesday, December 7, episode of The Kelly Clarkson Show. “Right now, I’m like, ‘Oh, we’re having a great time.’ When it gets to the end, there’ll be no acting.”

Host Kelly Clarkson replied, “It’ll be ugly cry,” which the Emmy winner confirmed with a nod and the line, “It’ll be ugly.”

Sterling K Brown Won't Be Able to Stop Crying After Filming This Is Us Finale
Sterling K. Brown MediaPunch/Shutterstock

The American Crime Story alum has played Randall Pearson since This Is Us premiered in September 2016. Randall is the adopted son of Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and Rebecca Pearson (Mandy Moore), who are also parents to Kate (Chrissy Metz) and Kevin (Justin Hartley).

The NBC series has always been known for tugging at viewers’ heartstrings, but the final season, premiering in January, seems poised to cause more crying than ever. In August, creator Dan Fogelman said that a story pitch meeting held over Zoom brought NBC executives to tears.

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“People were crying to the point that I wasn’t sure if I should keep going or not,” he told Deadline at the time. “Cameras were shutting off, and I thought I’d lost people.”

Brown, for his part, isn’t unaffected by the bittersweet feeling of wrapping up the beloved series.

“I love the show. It’s been one of the best six-year rides of my life,” he told Clarkson, 39, on Tuesday. “Professionally, it’s been absolutely amazing — beautiful people.”

Sterling K Brown Won't Be Able to Stop Crying After Filming This Is Us Finale
Lyric Ross, Susan Kelechi Watson, Sterling K. Brown, Eris Baker and Faithe Herman in ‘This Is Us.’ Ron Batzdorff/NBC

The Golden Globe winner added that one of his favorite parts of working on the series has been watching his young costars get older. On the show, Randall and his wife, Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson) are parents to Tess (Eris Baker), Annie (Faithe Herman) and Deja (Lyric Ross).

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“I’ve gotten a chance to see these three little girls grow up over time,” Brown explained. “Every time I’m on stage with them, I’m like, ‘I’m gonna miss them.’ And I see their parents who are backstage with them, and I’m like, ‘I love your daughters.'”

The feeling, it seems, is mutual. “He’s just amazing,” Baker, 16, told Popsugar of Brown in May 2018. “He’s such a nice person. His family is the nicest family I have ever met, and he’s huge right now. … Just God bless him. He’s doing his thing, and he’s just a star.”

The final season of This Is Us premieres on NBC Tuesday, January 4, at 9 p.m. ET.

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