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NBC Insider Dr. Death

Mandy Moore Has the Most Delicious Christmas Eve Family Tradition

Moore says her Dr. Death role as "a bit of a left turn" for the This Is Us alum, and she also talked life with sons Ozzie and Gus. 

By Samantha Vincenty

Actress and singer Mandy Moore returned to The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on December 18, to talk about her role on the new season of Peacock's Dr. Death and catch Jimmy Fallon up on life with Moore's two kids, Gus and Ozzie. Though, Moore joked, Fallon has met her baby son before.

How to Watch

Watch The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on NBC weeknights at 11:35/10:35c and next day on Peacock

"I was pregnant last time I was here, but I wasn't telling anybody," Moore, who welcomed her second child in October 2022. "So, technically, Ozzie has been on the show!"

In fact, the This Is Us alum's older son, "almost three"-year-old Gus, is the only family member who hasn't been on The Tonight Show, in utero or otherwise. "Because last time, my husband, [musician Taylor Goldsmith], played with me when I played some music. So we gotta get him on the show," Moore joked. 

Moore had just given birth to Ozzie when she was offered the role on the third season of anthology series Dr. Death, but she told Fallon the gig was too good to pass up.

RELATED: Mandy Moore Is Charmed by Edgar Ramirez's Dr. Death in Sneak Peek

"It was a bit of a left turn," Moore said. "I had a 6-week-old baby, and this opportunity came about to be here in New York. And it's based on a true story—it was just something I couldn't say no to."

Jimmy Fallon's "taking" Mandy Moore's Christmas Eve tradition

With two young kids, Moore says she and Goldsmith are still settling into their family Christmas groove.

"We just moved, so we're starting to sort of figure out what our roots are and cementing what our traditions are going to be," Moore told Fallon. They do have one super-cozy tradition, however. 

"Growing up, my parents claimed in their first year of marriage, they didn't have any food in the house on Christmas Eve, other than breakfast food," Moore explained. "So that was our tradition growing up as kids. We had breakfast for dinner on Christmas Eve."

Mandy Moore on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon epiosde 1893

"I kind of like this idea," Fallon said, as Moore added that they did "pancakes, waffles, bagels, eggs, bacon, the whole nine yards."

"Oh, I might take this from you," Fallon said.

"Go for it!" Moore cheered.

"I'm taking people's traditions this year—just trying to steal everything!" (Another idea that Fallon said he's been inspired to "steal": Gwen Stefani once told him that "she wraps the doorway into to the living room so that when the kids see Christmas morning, they run through the paper," football-player style.

Mandy Moore describes her Dr. Death role

In the third season of the anthology series, which is based on a Wondery podcast, "I basically play an investigative reporter who is doing a story on this famous Italian surgeon who is pioneering regenerative medicine, and he's growing tracheas in his lab and implanting them in people," Moore told Fallon. "And I cross the ethical boundaries as a journalist and fall in love with him."

Benita (Mandy Moore) and Paolo (Edgar Ramirez) walk down the street together

As with every season of Dr. Death, "it's a wild, true story," Moore says. You can learn about the real Dr. Paolo Macchiarini here—or you can stay spoiler-free watching Dr. Death when it premieres on Peacock December 21.