“This Is Us” actress Eris Baker may be only 13, but she delivered one of the third season’s most moving performances.
Baker told TODAY that the subtly poignant scene in which her character, Tess Pearson, comes out to parents Randall (Sterling K. Brown) and Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson) was her favorite to shoot.
“I just loved that scene because it just shows how we should be embracing one another, and just embracing our love for each other,” she said. “That was such an emotional scene for Tess, and also for me.”
“It was different, for me and for Tess, because she's always been so happy and joyful, to kind of be like, ‘Hey, I'm still a kid and going through a lot,’” she added.
After the episode aired in November, Baker received an outpouring of praise on social media for how the subject was handled.
“I got multiple DMs on Facebook and Instagram saying, ‘Thank you for sharing that story’ and ‘I want to have this conversation with my daughter or my son,’ or ‘They're going through this right now.’ Or just kids saying ‘This helped me a lot’ and how they want to talk to their parents more, talk to family members more, just talk to God more.”
Baker says it’s easy to see her own family in the Pearsons.
“I have such a smart and intelligent mom that loves to dance,” she said. “And I have an amazing father that is very protective over us. And I have three little sisters in real life, and I have two sisters on the show, so I can relate in many ways.”
Baker also had warm words for her onscreen parents, Brown and Watson.
“They are such amazing actors,” she said. “They're so talented and even better people.”
The young actress said she enjoys learning from her seasoned co-stars.
“The advice that I probably get on the show from lots of the adults is that age is just a number,” she said. “I started ‘This is Us,’ which is like my biggest booking I ever got, when I was 10, and I got into this business when I was about 8.”She continued, “It takes hard work and dedication and it's not fast, 'cause I had to wait two years, and some people had to wait three. Some people have to wait five. Lots of the cast just showed me how people experience success at different ages. And I think that's very true.”