Gilmore Girls Revival: Milo Ventimiglia Ready to 'Strap the Leather Jacket on and Shake Things Up' as Jess

Milo Ventimiglia Gilmore Girls Interview

Add Milo Ventimiglia to the list of Gilmore Girls vets experiencing something of a nostalgic mind frak upon returning to Stars Hollow.

“It’s a little strange in the best possible way,” the actor tells me in his first interview since signing on to reprise his role as Jess in Netflix’s forthcoming revival. “All of a sudden, you’re teleported to being 25 years old again. But you’re not 25 anymore. We’re all a lot older.”

In the following Q&A, Ventimiglia tackles the big Jess-related revival mysteries, including — but not limited to — in how many of the four installments he’ll appear, what’s up with Jess’ publishing empire, and with which of Rory’s men does he think she ultimately belongs?!

TVLINE | When did you first get the inkling that this was maybe going to happen?
It wasn’t until the [cast] reunion in Austin a year ago that it was something that felt potentially, possibly real. When Amy [Sherman-Palladino] first told me [that it was happening], my first response was, “Yes. Absolutely. I’ll be back. I don’t care if I’m in Tunisia doing a movie. I’ll fly home, I’ll be Jess, because I love you guys so much. And then I’ll go back to my job in Tunisia.” As it turns out, I don’t have a job in Tunisia. I’m here in L.A., which is nice.

TVLINE | How many of the four episodes are you in?
I would say more than two, less than four.

TVLINE | What can you say about where Jess is in his life when we pick back up?
I was trying to recall where we left off with him. I think he was starting his own press in Philadelphia. He had written a book. And he was trying to re-inspire Rory into going back to her roots. Not much has changed in Jess’ world since then. Jess might’ve been a pain in the ass when he first got to Stars Hollow, but he grew up and became a pretty decent guy. So it’s kind of a continuation of that with Jess.

TVLINE | Obviously, many of the headlines about the revival have focused on Rory’s men, especially now that you, Jared and Matt are returning.
Always a hot topic. [Laughs]

TVLINE | Where do you currently stand on the question of who Rory should be with?
[Laughs] Oh, God. I don’t know. I kind of love Scott Patterson’s reaction to it at the Gilmore panel last year, where he said, “None of them.” The fans are a better authority about who Rory should possibly be with or could be with.

TVLINE | When do you start shooting?
Soon. I’m looking forward to being back on the Warner Bros. lot. I feel like it’s the studio that raised me, so it’ll be a nice homecoming.

TVLINE | Do you feel like you have unfinished business with Jess?
[Laughs] I really don’t think about a character beyond what the run is. When my stretch on Gilmore ended, I was done. But I had a lot of fun with this character and the cast and Dan and Amy, so [it’s really about] going back to a fun bunch of memories in my life. And reconnecting with old friends. So I’m excited. But I personally don’t have unfinished business with Jess. I don’t have a grievance with Jess. There’s nothing in particular I’m excited to play, other then maybe strap on his leather jacket and pop back in to shake things up.