WHO: Ed O’Neill, Julie Bowen, Sofia Vergara, Ty Burrell, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Eric Stonestreet, and exec producers Steven Levitan and Jason Winer.

PREMISE: Riotously funny single-camera comedy focusing on three very different dysfunctional families. Easily the best comedy pilot of the new fall season. (BTW, last day of press tour! I made it!)

9:11 am: The panel begins with a question about the pilot’s big twist, which ABC initially asked us to keep quiet about. Apparently, the gag order has now been lifted so here it is (spoiler alert!): The three families are all related!

9:13 am: E.P. Levitan says incorporating the Office-style mockumentary element brings “some grit” to the show and makes “it not so syrupy.”

9:15 am: A reporter asks Ferguson about his decision to do another comedy after being in the “real awful one on Fox.” (For the record, he’s referring to the short-lived Do Not Disturb.) The actor jokes, “What people don’t understand is that [Disturb] was a three-part miniseries. We told our [entire] story.” All kidding aside, Ferguson says he contemplated returning to theater after the Disturb debacle, but changed his mind when he read the Modern Family script.

9:20 am: Asked to compare his current and former TV spouses (Sofia Vergara’s Gloria vs. Katey Sagal’s Peg), O’Neill says, “I’m older, she’s younger. Peg and I were a little closer in age. This is a whole different deal. I’m in a little over my head in this one, and it’s kind of fun to keep up.”

9:26 am: I heart Sofia Vergara and her fabulous Colombian accent.

9:28 am: Bowen was less than a month away from giving birth when she shot the pilot. “You might notice my character does a lot of laundry in the pilot,” she says with a laugh. “The reality is I was hiding an enormous belly.” She adds that playing the harried mom on TV is a lot more fun than “playing the love interest and just sort of reacting.” (Is she talking about Lost?)

Coming up later today: ABC exec session, FlashForward, Cougar Town, and more!

Episode Recaps

Mitch and Cam, Modern Family

Modern Family

Parents just don’t understand… and neither do kids or spouses in this hit ensemble comedy

  • TV Show
  • 10
  • Wednesdays at 09:00 PM
  • ABC
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