Ed O’Neill, who plays Jay Pritchett on ABC’s hit comedy Modern Family, wasn’t interested in doing another sitcom after Married ... With Children went off the air.
But creators Christopher Lloyd and Steven Levitan knew Ed would be perfect for the show. “They asked [my manager] if they could send [the script] to me when they finish it and if I’d give it a quick read," Ed recalls in a recent interview on Neon Tommy.
"I read it and then I read it again ... And I thought, 'oh, [crap]' … I called my manager and said, 'Make the deal.'"
Ed knew it was a well-scripted show, but claims he had no idea it would be such a hit. "I didn’t expect the show to get as big as it did. You start out thinking, 'I think this show could be very good.' How good? You never know.”
In addition to the script, Ed was also drawn to the character of Jay. He saw many similarities between himself and the no-nonsense father figure. “Jay came from apparently meager beginnings and he worked his way up," Ed says, adding he wouldn't change a thing about Jay.
Thank goodness Ed decided to give Modern Family and Jay a chance! We can’t imagine anyone else in the role.