Modern Family to Feature Nathan Lane, Explanation for Lack of Gay PDA, and, One Day, a Gay Wedding

Modern Family will one day feature a gay wedding, the NY Post reports.

ModernfamilySaid Eric Stonestreet: “There is no doubt that is going to happen. I don’t know how that would happen with the real life legality…Maybe it would be a destination (wedding). Us going somewhere that gay marriage is legal. But they have to save some of that stuff. We hope to be on the air for seven years.” 

Adds producer Christopher Lloyd: “Frankly we have stayed away from anything that feels overtly political. It is just not the style of our show. But we wouldn’t rule it out.”

In the works, however, is the possible introduction of a second adoption, and the arrival of a flamboyant gay friend, played by Nathan Lane:

"Broadway and film star Nathan Lane will guest star on ABC's hit comedy Modern Family in its sophomore season, playing the (until now) unseen, older flambouyant (sic) friend of the show's gay couple, Pepper.

Modern Family executive producer Steve Levitan let the news drop during an informal chat with reporters here at the TV Critics press tour. But casting Lane was a bit of a struggle for Levitan — not because of Lane's talent, but because producers have resisted casting too many big celebrity guests in the show's next season, wary of leading viewers to see the series as a guest-of-the-week pit stop.

'It's perfect casting, and that's why we'll do it,' said Levitan, noting that Lane is expected to film his scenes in a couple of weeks. 'As we looked at that part, we though 'Nobody is going to do a better job.' We figured what he's going to bring to it will far surpass the fact that people are going to know that it's Nathan Lane.'"

Levitan also talked more about the episode that will explain the lack of kissing between Cameron and Mitchell:

"Two of the writers on our show who are gay we're explaining their very different points of view. And one of them is very comfortable [with it]. The picture was shown of the two couples kissing in the airport [from the Hawaii episode] and he said 'I would never ever kiss my partner in the airport.' And I asked why. And he said 'I would feel like I would have that red dot on my head like someone was going to shoot me.'

That's his thing. That's his point of view. That's a legitimate thing. And that's what we get into — what is making Mitch so uncomfortable. It goes to a very surprising place."


  1. Mike D says

    Gay weddings are legal in California. We’re just not allowed to use the word “marriage.” That’s part of the reason the law is so ridiculous.

  2. jonny says

    “Frankly we have stayed away from anything that feels overtly political. It is just not the style of our show. But we wouldn’t rule it out.”

    Whether or not they have a gay wedding is not what I take issue with. It is the statement of not being overtly political.
    If the two guys on the show are in love, have a baby together, and want to get married, there is nothing political about that. It is a statement of love and commitment for the two people – plus friends and families involved – while all the cynics view it as a setpiece of an agenda and politically motivated.
    When are the opposition going to get it into their head that I do not want to have the option to get married so I can flaunt it; I want the option so I can cherish the relationship that everyone else can take part in.

  3. Drew says

    I love this show and think the gay couple is perfect; they don’t work the gay- they just are (versus Will & Grace’s personalities).

  4. SFshawn says

    It’s 2010 and two men(supposedly in a committed relationship) still can’t kiss and show affection without the sitcom world freaking out? As long as closeted gay men and uptight,sexually maladjusted supposedly “straight” men continue to Censor/Edit/Deny any REAL gay sexuality then we’ll always continue to have the overly effeminate,sexually ambiguous,NON-THREATENING gays like Nathan Lane camping it up for laughs AT our expense and not to our ultimate equality.
    Fuck you to the writers of Modern Family and all your homophobic rationalizations in denying gay men their sexuality on mainstream TV in 2010.

  5. Michael @ says

    AMEN, Jonny! You beat me to it. “Political,” my ass!!! What year IS it in this guy’s head NINETEEN 10? I bet he uses the term “gay lifestyle,” too. Our lives are LIVES, not “styles” or “political” statements. Once again, for the more stupid one has to fall back on a racial analogy. That producer would not DARE defend not showing a black straight couple or interracial straight couple and I guarantee you there are viewers who still wish such couples were NEVER seen on TV.

    SFSHAWN: Ditto!

  6. Paul R says

    I dated someone for 17 years and I can think of perhaps two times we kissed in public. He was out to his family and friends, but was from a small town and simply wasn’t comfortable with it.

    I agree that marriage isn’t political, and I’ll be very surprised if I can stomach Nathan Lane. He’s annoying.

  7. says

    Remember the Jeffersons? Remember the inter-racial couple on the Jeffersons? Remember the kiss they shared that many stations wouldn’t air because of the “politically charged” atmosphere of inter-racial relationships at the time.

    Funny thing is, that was no more than 30 years ago. Look at how far we’ve come.

    I agree with the previous posters. When you say it’s “politically charged” you add fuel to the fire of those that want us back in the closet. Instead of making a “political statement” why not show us as we really are? Brothers & Sisters does it with great care. The more “cautious” we are at showing ourselves as we truly are – fully sexualized counterparts to our straight brothers and sisters – the more we cow-tow to those that would rather not have us on television at all. Okay, so one of the characters is uncomfortable with PDA. As a fan of the show (still am even after all the hoopla about the lack of PDA amongst the gays) I look forward to seeing how they handle that.

    What I’m not looking forward to is an over the top campy realization of the feminine I’m sure Nathan Lane will bring to his character. Don’t get me wrong, I love Nathan Lane. I just don’t like the parts he finds himself in every now and again. Not that there isn’t a place for the “nelly queen” on television. Speaking on diversity, our “nelly queens” threw the first shoe at Stonewall and got the ball rolling for us to demand our place at the table. So I have absolutely no problem with feminine men being portrayed on tv. It’s just that I’ve seen Nathan play that character before and I’m over it.

  8. Ian says

    “And he said ‘I would feel like I would have that red dot on my head like someone was going to shoot me.’ That’s his thing. That’s his point of view. That’s a legitimate thing.”

    No, it is not a “point of view” it is an expression and admission of FEAR. He is curtailing his behavior out of fear of being targeted by bullies.

    And fuck me. Nathan Lane playing televisions stereotypical flamboyant (flaming) queen (not in a good way)again. So not looking forward to that. Perhaps the show might surprise though, it is well written after all.

  9. GregV says

    I’m less comfortable with PDA than my partner is, so I can identify with the character. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t hold his hand when we are in bed or kiss him when he arrives home or lie down next to him to watch TV when it’s just him and me. So why is the lack of public PDA not balanceed out by Mitchell and Cameron being affectionate when they are in the scenes that take place at home?

    I love the show and, for the most part, Cameron and Michell but have rolled by eyes a few times when the script has required them to, for example, scream and squeal like 8 year-old girls when they saw a bird in the house or the elevator closed with Lili’s carriage inside.

    Will Nathan Lane play a realistic and truly funny gay character, or will the scriptwriters take the low road and just drawn up an old, tired caracture we’ve seen too many times?

  10. says


    They will have to come to CT to wed, where we’ve had marriage equality since 2008.

    Onward to full civil and marriage equality rights in 21st century America.

    Joe Mustich, Justice of the Peace,
    Washington, Connecticut, USA.

  11. gregorybrown says

    It’s probably an admission of personal shallowness to say that I find Nathan Lane’s persona ICKY, and avoid anything he intrudes into just as I refuse to watch Tom Cruise.

  12. Vince says

    It comes as no suprise to me that Modern Family’s creators take such a limp-wristed attitude about a gay man’s sexuality. Look how “safe” and unsexual they made the gay couple on this show. And now they want to add a “flamboyant” Nathan Lane. What a shame they can’t raise Paul Lynde from the dead. Are we truly living in the 21st century? You would never know it from the gay portrayals on this show.

    And what’s with that excuse for not showing affection between the two gay characters? Is an airport the only place they could show them kissing? How about their bedroom? Or the kitchen? Or, horrors, their backyard?

    For all its supposed daring in showing a gay couple as a family unit, Modern Family is lame and regressive. It makes Will and Grace look positively radical.

  13. Erin says

    I’ve never been more proud of Iowa – it’s legal here! I think that would be fantastic to have a destination wedding to a corn field :)

    ALso, Modern Family never claimed to be daring – quite the oposite, actually. The point of the show is that this is a MODERN FAMILY in America living life. It’s not trying to be political, it’s not shoving ideas down closed-minded people’s throats. It’s just a quality show.

  14. gc says

    wow. y’all mad?

    yeah, the “political” comment was a little weird – an expression of love is an expression of love. but really, some people are MAD at the creators of “modern family” – and for what? for having a believable gay couple, a gay storyline that is always present and not on the sidelines, and nathan lane, who is a talented, out actor be on the show? so what if he plays a flamboyant character? he’s good at it. i say, more power to this show.

    and also – if a writer says he’s uncomfortable with PDA, that IS his point of view, whether you like it or not. of course its rooted in fear, he pretty much says so himself. but it is part of (some people’s) reality.