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Amanda Leighton Sophie Logan Shroyer Kevin Jon Huertas Miguel Mandy Moore Rebecca NBC

Fans are anxiously awaiting This Is Us’ next season, but they may end up waiting for it even longer than expected. Do not worry. If you already stocked up on your Kleenexes for the tear-jerking series’ return, you will still get to use them. They may just be in storage for longer than initially predicted.

This Is Us was one of the few shows that managed to complete its season before television productions were forced to shut down. Thus leading to many network shows having to wrap their seasons prematurely. This Is Us’ latest season finale aired back in late March with a brutal fight between Kevin and Randall. Now comes word that the follow-up season could be quite a bit off into the future.

When can fans anticipate seeing if that argument leads to an even more massive blunder? Jon Huertas, who plays Miguel on the drama, provided an update on Season 5’s production during a video call with California Governor Gavin Newsom and others. Discussing when filming on This Is Us’ next installment would start, Huertas said (via The Wrap):

I was just on the phone with Dan Fogelman and we were talking about, you know, we may not go into production until January, depending on whether or not there’s a second wave. When we talk about the protocols and the guidelines that we may be following when we go back into production, it’s really kind of daunting to all of us. The actors, we talk all the time.

As it stands, Season 5 may not begin production until January 2021. For some context, This Is Us’ fourth season started filming in July 2019. That sort of head-start gave the NBC drama the ability to have its season wrapped and ready to go ahead of the outbreak. A January 2021 start date would be six months after its previous production window.

Fall television usually starts in the fall, and if This Is Us cannot start filming until next January, it obviously guarantees that the show won't be back this year. The CW has already confirmed that their series will not return until next year, which throws out any hope of a fall start to its season.

Based on what Jon Huertas is saying, there are a lot of currently missing pieces to the future of This Is Us. Not only could filming be delayed by quite a bit, but that would then lead to a later release date. Huertas asserts that the guidelines the cast and crew would have to follow would be “daunting.”

For its part, the Czech Republic is already starting things up on their end with guidelines in place, so it seems do-able right now. My question is, if This Is Us can start filming in January, would everything on-screen appear as it always has? For instance, would hugs and other signs of affection be permitted between the actors?

Also, when could This Is Us return if it starts filming next January? To make a prediction (only a prediction), you may be able to confer This Is Us’ history. Season 4 began filming in July 2019 and premiered two months later in late September. If Season 5 starts shooting in January 2021, it could theoretically premiere in March 2021. A midseason premiere? It is possible.

You can catch up with the Pearsons during previous seasons of This Is Us on Hulu. While you wait for the family to return, you can check out this summer’s premieres.

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