With filming for the first season of NBC’s breakout drama “This Is Us” done-and-dusted, actress Mandy Moore hopped a flight to New York to catch a few fashion shows and try to restore some sense of normality.
The Golden Globe-nominated actress’ career has accelerated in recent months due to her role as “Rebecca,” a blindingly frank mother of three, in the popular series that has a non-linear narrative. With events in the characters’ lives transpiring out-of-order, viewers inevitably have questions not only about the timeline, but also the progression of their own lives.
Before Lela Rose’s luncheon and fashion show at Loring Place Monday, Moore talked about how the show’s undercurrent of time is playing out in others’ lives. “What we’re doing is inherently about family. I hope that people are able to watch the show and identify bits and pieces of themselves, and the challenges and obstacles that they face. I know it’s helped people at least to start to have conversations that maybe they wouldn’t necessarily have,” she said. “That kind of speaks to the power of the medium of television and film.”
As much as she likes “being part of something that feels important and timely,” Moore said, “just being part of something that feels hopeful in this days and age” makes her feel very proud. As one of the more visible celebrity supporters of last month’s Women’s March, Moore said she is looking to her peers to see what the next steps are. Having first found fame as musician, she was part of the celebrity-studded “Fight Song” that aired at last summer’s Democratic National Committee.
“I think all of us don’t really have a choice to sit back. We can’t not be political any more. We don’t have a choice. We don’t have the option necessarily,” Moore said. “It’s our duty to step up and keep ourselves as informed and educated as we can stand to be. Because sometimes it’s easier to stick your head in the sand. So I’m trying day-by-day to put one foot in front of the other.”
Having appeared as “Rapunzel” in the 2010 film “Tangled,” Moore will also be part of the series by the same name that makes its debut on the Disney Channel on March 10. (“This Is Us” creator Dan Fogelman also wrote the movie “Tangled.”) Even though she grew up in Orlando, her ties to Disney were previously zilch. “It is so much fun. I feel like a little piece of that character lives inside of me — her spunk and her zest for life and her sense for adventure and fearlessness. I get to sing and be reunited with everybody that I worked with on the film.”
Her singing career took off at the age of 14, thanks to a FedEx driver who heard her in a Florida studio and later shared her music with a friend at A&R at Epic Records. “I am very grateful to them for jump-starting my career‚ for sure,” she said.
Taking a breather from the time travel that her role on “This Is Us” requires, Moore, whose divorce from Ryan Adams was finalized in June, was very much in the present Monday. “We just wrapped the show Friday and I’m trying to find some sense for normalcy again. I just came here immediately to be with my friends. We’re going to have a little bit of a girls’ week, take in some fashion shows [Marchesa, Marc Jacobs and Naeem Khan] and eat good food.”