For four years, fans have fallen in love with This Is Us stars Milo Ventimiglia and Mandy Moore over and over again. The dynamic duo, who play husband and wife Jack and Rebecca Pearson, still had a lot to learn about one another when filming for the hit series first began. One story of Ventimiglia’s, in particular, almost brought Moore to tears.
Some wonder if Milo Ventimiglia and Sylvester Stallone are related
Ventimiglia and Stallone have a slight resemblance. This is exactly the reason Ventimiglia played Stallone’s son in the 2006 film, Rocky Balboa.
The physical similarity — a crooked mouth — has led to many theories that the two are related in real life. Though they aren’t, each had their own journey with their lips, and how the adversity may have helped them get where they are now.
Stallone was pulled out with forceps when he was born, which dmaged his lip and severed nerves in his eyelid, according to IGN. Ventimiglia was born with dead nerves.
“I remember [Stallone] telling me, ‘Make sure you’re mouth is warmed up because it’s cold out.’ You should see the two of us when we’re filming in Philly standing in front of heat lamps just moving our mouths. Which was nice because we got to bond on that,” Ventimiglia said.
The story isn’t one This Is Us co-star Moore had heard. In fact, when they first began working on the hit series, she didn’t even notice his lips.
Why Ventimiglia almost made Mandy Moore cry
Despite maintaining heartthrob status for many years, Ventimiglia remains humble when it comes to fame.
“I have a pretty crooked mouth,” he told Glamour in 2016. “When I was a kid, I worked on it. So, I used to talk out of the side of my face. It was that pronounced.”
He continued: “When I was born, they didn’t work. They’re broken, the nerves in my lower left lip. When I was kid, I would talk out of the side of my face.”
The actor explained a time he auditioned for Batman and Robin when he was 16 years old, saying they interviewed him outside of the Warner Bros. studio.
“When I got home, I was like, ‘Oh, this was exciting!’ But then when I watched the news, I was like, ‘Mom, what is wrong with my mouth?!’ I said, ‘Mom, what is wrong with me?’ and she said, ‘What do you mean? It’s you!’ and I said, ‘No, that’s what I look like when I talk?’ and she goes, ‘Yeah, that’s you,’ and I’m like, ‘OK, no.’”
“I used to sit when I was a kid, from 14 or 15 on, with a book or a paper or a magazine in front of a mirror and teach myself to speak with a more straight mouth, so it wasn’t so pronounced,” he said, bringing Moore to tears, according to the outlet.
“I felt like it was something that didn’t represent how I wanted to present myself. Now I’ll see kids I come across on Twitter or Comic-Con, and they’ll smile and I’ll be like, ‘You have a crooked mouth like I have a crooked mouth!’ We just sit there, and I talk about it with them and they feel better about themselves. We’re all different, and there are things we’re self-conscious about, but I saw that, and I don’t know.”
Moore said she’d never have known, to which Ventimiglia added he can “hide it well unless I’m running and yelling, then you really see how crooked my mouth is!”
Ventimiglia also stated that, though the lips don’t work, he can still feel everything.
Moore may not have noticed Ventimiglia’s lips, but she did notice this
In the pilot episode of This Is Us, the Pearson story opens with a birthday scene between a nearly-naked Jack and a very pregnant Rebecca.
“I remember reading it, and it said in the script, ‘Jack covers his bits with a towel,’ and I’m like, ‘This is network TV, there’s no way they’re going to show his butt! He’ll be in briefs or nude underwear…’” Moore said in the same Glamour interview.
“And then [Ventimiglia] came in and were wearing a robe, and you took the robe off for the first time, and I was like, “Oh, that’s his butt! It’s really there!’”
Ventimiglia mentioned saying against the wall as not to “upset” anyone,” to which Moore replied, “No, he was not upsetting anybody!”
This Is Us returns to NBC on Oct. 27.
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