Writer-producers Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd were mulling ideas for the 2009 TV season when they landed on an intriguing sitcom approach, one revolving around an extended family and done in the “mockumentary” style made popular by The Office. Lloyd liked the resulting Modern Family script, but didn't think the show would be successful, he tells the AP. Then the ensemble cast of familiar TV faces such as Ed O’Neill (Married ... With Children) and Julie Bowen (Lost, Ed), and relative newcomers was gathered. Once the first episode was shot, Lloyd moved “all the way to hopeful,” as he put it. The ABC show, which ends its 11-season run with an hour-long finale 9pm EDT Wednesday, went on to earn five best comedy Emmy Awards to equal the record set by Frasier, which counted Levitan and Lloyd among its writers.
The critically lauded series proved to be an increasingly rare TV bird: It gently pushed at social boundaries while remaining a treat that kids and parents could enjoy together. Modern Family wrapped taping before the coronavirus forced a halt to movie and TV production. The finale will be preceded at 8pm by the documentary A Modern Farewell, a look back at the show's creation and run, which included five seasons among the 30 top-rated series. Levitan said he never regretted the mockumentary approach, which was intended to make Modern Family feel true-to-life. “There’s times in my house, I’m embarrassed to say, my children will say something so ridiculous and I find there’s this impulse to look at the camera,” says Bowen. "That’s an 11-year habit I’m going to have to break." Read the full story for more on the show.
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