Mandy Moore on That Devastating 'This Is Us' Fire

During last week's This Is Us season premiere, fans finally got another major clue as to how Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) died, with the episode's final scene showing Rebecca (Mandy Moore) driving up to a burned-down Pearson house without Jack in the car, and a few of his possessions in the backseat.

Moore sat down with Entertainment Weekly to discuss the harrowing scene, which was shot two months after the rest of the episodes to keep it secret.

"We were all aware that people were going to be a little shocked and shaken," Moore shared. "But I didn't know how it was going to be cut together until I saw it for the first time [last Tuesday]. It's heavy. It's so emotional. There was so much secrecy around it, and we had to really be careful in the way we talked about it, and we had a code word that we had to talk about the fire…. I think there's a collective sigh of relief now that it's out in the world. Even though that's not the full story…. You don't know everything."

While fans don't yet know the full details of what happened to Jack, Moore promised the scene would eventually lead to the truth of his death.

"Nobody's pulling the rug out from anybody," she said. "This [sequence contains] the reason that he passed away. But how the fire started, were they in the house? All of that remains to be seen and will be answered slowly as the season trickles along."

For a few clues, Moore advised fans to think about why Rebecca was wearing a Steelers jersey in the scene and why Jack's belongings were in the car, unscathed.

Before the scene, viewers saw Jack and Rebecca split up after a fight, and while it appeared to be temporary, Moore acknowledged that the looming fact of Jack's death made the split a tough one.

"We know the clock is ticking at this point, and I find that all the more heartbreaking," she said. "Just the way that somebody passes away — absolutely, that episode is going to break people's hearts. Whether or not Jack and Rebecca were still together at that point and what the nature of their relationship was, to me, is all the more heartbreaking."


This Is Us airs on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. EST on NBC.

Photo Credit: NBC