Milo Ventimiglia may claim that there are significant differences between himself and his This Is Us character (differences we totally love, TBH) while also having a strangely sweet reaction to the sex-symbol status that has come along with his renewed success, but one of our fave TV-crushes just revealed a detail about his beloved-yet-doomed character, Jack, that would have absolutely ruined the show.

Milo Ventimiglia

“They wanted somebody completely different,” the 39-year-old told Variety, admitting that the folks behind the scenes were looking for someone totally unlike Ventimiglia when they went into the casting process. He added, “I walked in with my beard and my long hair and set my motorcycle helmet down and they went, ‘Who is this guy?’”

Milo Ventimiglia

“This guy” was not only a former Gilmore Girls star, but he also turned out to be the man who has brought Jack to life (while telling the story of his eventual death). Thankfully, he was able to win the big bosses over, saying, “I think they just saw something different than someone who had practiced the words, and they picked me.” And we’re so glad that they did.

We’ll be able to see Milo Ventimiglia once again as Jack when This Is Us returns to NBC for its second season on Tuesday, September 19.

Can you imagine anyone else playing Jack in This Is Us? Let us know @BritandCo!

(h/t Variety; photos via Dia Dipasupil/Getty, NBC)