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This Is Us' Chris Sullivan Found His Next TV Project With Another Complicated Family

Chris Sullivan as Toby on This Is Us
(Image credit: NBC)

The end is coming for This Is Us, which means that fans are mere months from saying goodbye to the Pearsons after six seasons of ups and downs. That said, some stars have already landed new projects that could bring them back to TV after the NBC drama concludes, and Chris Sullivan is the latest to find a fresh role for the small screen. And it involves another complicated family, although not nearly as dramatic as the Pearsons!

Chris Sullivan has been cast as the star of a single-camera comedy pilot in development for ABC, called The Son in Law. Deadline reports that the This Is Us actor will play Jake, a divorced father of a 21-year-old daughter. After finding the right woman, he wants to get married again despite thinking he’d never fall in love another time. This is a comedy and not a rom com, however, so there are definitely some bonus complications. 

Sullivan’s Jake wants to marry Asha, but he’s a middle class plumbing contractor while her family is incredibly sophisticated and wealthy. He has to ask for her father’s blessing and try to win over her mom, who isn’t exactly subtle about thinking Jake is the wrong man for her daughter. At the same time, Jake doesn’t exactly go easy on the young man who is in a relationship with his own daughter. I think it’s safe to say that hijinks will ensue! 

That is, hijinks will ensue if The Son in Law receives a series order from ABC. The project is currently in the pilot stage, which means that there’s no guarantee that Chris Sullivan’s return to network television will be with this comedy. The project hails from executive producers Ajay Sahgal (The Carmichael Show), Jake Kasdan (New Girl), and Melvin Mar (Fresh Off the Boat), with Sahgal also writing. 

The production team has a string of comedy hits to their names, and Sullivan coming off of six seasons of This Is Us means that The Son in Law has a strong star to headline, so the project already has a lot going for it in the pilot stage. Although it’s in the works at ABC, it hails from the 20th Television production company. 20th Television produced This Is Us, and is also the production company behind The Company You Keep, which is the TV pilot that Sullivan’s This Is Us co-star Milo Ventimiglia signed on for as his first follow-up to playing Jack Pearson. Of course, the show’s timeline means that Sullivan’s Toby and Ventimiglia’s Jack have never actually interacted in the present.

If The Son in Law does come to ABC as a series, it will mark a shift from drama to comedy for Chris Sullivan. Admittedly, he has delivered some laughs on This Is Us over the years, but that show is definitely more of a tear-jerking drama that a hilarious comedy. Sullivan has nailed his dramatic performances to the point of earning two Emmy nominations for Best Supporting Actor. If the latest emotional scene between Mandy Moore’s Rebecca and the Big Three is any indication, there’s plenty of drama left even though the show is quickly approaching the end. Plus, there are still big questions about Kate and Toby’s divorce after some hints. 

Only time will tell if Chris Sullivan’s new comedy pilot will get the series order from ABC, but you can find him in new episodes of This Is Us on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on NBC. For some more viewing options now and in the coming weeks, check out our 2022 TV schedule. If you want to revisit the earlier season of This Is Us, you can find the full series so far with a Hulu subscription

Laura Hurley
Laura Hurley

Resident of One Chicago, Bachelor Nation, and Cleveland. Has opinions about crossovers, Star Wars, and superheroes. Will not time travel.