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Jon Huertas tells the process that brought him to play Miguel

This Is Us, Jon Huertas on Miguel's emotional episode

This Is Us star Jon Huertas recalls the process that brought him to play Miguel on the show, from the audition to his character’ story!

In an interview for Deadline, the latin actor opened up on his journey to Miguel: from how he landed the role to the importance of representation.

Jon Huertas tells the process that brought him to play Miguel
What was the audition process like to get the role of Miguel in This Is Us?

When I came home from Puerto Rico, I auditioned for potential roles in Ozark, One Day at a Time and This Is Us. The casting directors for This Is Us loved me for the role of Mike, who later became Miguel. I met with [creator] Dan Fogelman and his team at Paramount for a chemistry read and I remember thinking I was the token choice because the character was originally written as a white guy. So, I thought that made me the person who auditions so they can say, “Oh, we tried someone diverse and it didn’t work.” It was like that scene in the “Miguel” episode when he goes in for the job interview. We recreated that scene from my audition for the episode. I left Paramount and about 15 minutes later I got the call that I landed a recurring role on the show as Jack [Milo Ventimiglia]’s best friend.

Did you always know how important Miguel would be to the show’s story?

A week after my casting, I was asked to go to the Valley to get a lifecast made, which is when they use silicon and plaster to make a reproduction of your head. I asked why I was doing this, and they explained I would need it when I was older and playing Rebecca [Mandy Moore]’s husband. I thought they had me confused with Milo Ventimiglia because he was her husband, but they quickly corrected me, “No, Miguel will be married to Rebecca.” I had no idea. Dan later explained this was going to be a huge twist: Rebecca marries her husband’s best friend. I asked them immediately, “How are people going to react to this?” They reacted just as expected, they thought horrible things about him for a long time. As the show got more popular, they upgraded me to series regular, and the rest is history.

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Were you involved in the evolution of Miguel?

When I was cast, Miguel was this raw piece of clay. The producers invited me to sit with them each season to help mold him. What I loved most about working on this show is that they allowed me to collaborate on his evolution. I’m proud of how we shaped Miguel into this very successful character with a unique background and story. We slowly planted little seeds about the man Miguel was across each season. That culminated in the “Miguel” episode, that was born from the conversations we had each season.

Jon Huertas tells the process that brought him to play Miguel
How do you feel about how Miguel’s story ends?

What I think was brilliant about holding back on revealing more is that we got this beautiful gift of an episode about Miguel that may not have happened otherwise. The impact the episode had on people made it worth the wait. The feedback we got from caretakers, immigrants, people who feel caught between two worlds, Afro Latinos, and the Latinx community who felt seen was astonishing. Doing it all in one episode made it more impactful. There were even people who hated Miguel before who reached out to apologize. So many apologies! I tip my hat to Jonny Gomez who wrote the episode that touched so many people from different walks of life who found themselves in the episode somewhere.

What do you think about the process that brought Jon Huertas to play Miguel?

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Aurora

Source: Deadline

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About Author

Currently studying Communication sciences, when I’m not crying for university, I’m crying for TV series.
I like running off into imaginary worlds because they’re way better than reality. Oscar nominated for mental movies.
A perfect mix of Jane Sloan, Jessica Day and Clary Morgenstern (The book version, though).
In my free time, I write articles and TV series reviews, so to combine two biggest passions of mine.

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