This Is Us is going to keep playing with time in Season 3, producers Elizabeth Berger and Isaac Aptaker said at the Television Critics Association summer press tour Wednesday, beginning a few months ahead of where we left off at the end of Season 2. As it has in the past, the new season begins with with the Big Three celebrating a birthday: this year they're turning 38. But that doesn't mean This Is Us, already known for playing around with time in its first two seasons, will stay in the present: This season finds This Is Us going into other decades too, as This Is Us expands in scope of production and storytelling.

The First Pic of This Is UsSeason 3 Is Good News for One Character

Aptaker said fans have already seen clues about what's to come, when they saw Kevin (Justin Hartley) off to shoot a movie, Toby (Chris Sullivan) in the throes of a depressive episode and, of course, the mysteries around Jack's (Milo Ventimiglia)'s death mostly resolved at the end of Season 2. "This is a hopeful season about true new beginnings," Berger said.

Season 3 will explore more of Jack's time in Vietnam, and This Is Us has brought on writer Tim O'Brien, best known for his 1990 book The Things They Carried that chronicled his time in Vietnam, as a consultant and writer for an episode with executive producer Dan Fogelman. There will be three new characters too, including the all-important role of Jack's brother Nicky. Nicky has been cast, producers said, but remains a secret for now. There will also be more famous actors playing themselves — people likely connected to Kevin's Hollywood story, in line with previous cameos from Sylvester Stallone and Ron Howard.

This Is Us returns Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 9/8c on NBC.