Ryan Eggold played a father on "The Blacklist," and his "New Amsterdam" character, Dr. Max Goodwin, recently became a dad after a dramatic season finale. Has all of this made the actor think about having kids in real life?
"Oh yeah, yeah, big time," Eggold confessed without hesitation at a TODAY Parenting Team event in New York City on Tuesday morning. "Definitely. I would love to have kids. Having a baby on TV is great training for having a kid!"
Eggold spoke with Head of TODAY Parents Rebecca Dube about his role on "New Amsterdam" after TODAY Parenting Team contributors watched a sneak peek episode. Eggold told the audience that he gets "little doses" of playing with kids on set, and he enjoys feeding and comforting them.
"I'm very much looking forward to (parenting), whenever that comes," he said. He clarified he has no plans to start a family right this moment: Contrary to rumors, he is still not engaged. Until then, he's the doting dad to a pit bull he rescued, which he joked is even more practice for parenting.
Eggold added that, when acting in scenes with his fictional daughter, he often would think about how he might react to similar experiences with his own future children.
"I'm just playing make-believe, obviously, but there are things you learn as you go about it," Eggold said. "If you have to play a scene where you're dealing with XYZ issue about raising a child, you have to sort of pseudo-experience it. You have to think about 'How would I react?' and 'What is it like?' I'm telling you, it's the best training wheels."
During the event, Eggold took questions from TODAY Parenting Team contributors in the audience. (Want to join the Parenting Team? Sign up here!) Several questions revolved around the show's catch phrase, "How can I help?" which Eggold's character says frequently and which was the subject of an essay by Parenting Team contributor Kristi Hayes.
"If people listened before they blurted, we'd be so much better off," Eggold said. "I haven't been a parent yet, but I've been a son for many years now — pretty much all of them! — and I think it's so deeply important to listen first and to ask, because sometimes good intentions are misinterpreted."
Eggold talked about how the tragedy his character Max Goodwin experienced will affect his parenting this season.
"I can't fall apart, for her," he said, referring to Goodwin's newborn daughter on "New Amsterdam." "It's an interesting angle to take on grief and this character. ... Sure it would be nice to fall into a puddle and weep and really deal with this, but I have this little thing, this child, who depends on me, and so that's my priority."
Disclosure: "New Amsterdam" airs on NBC, which is owned by the same parent company as NBC News and the TODAY show.
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