His Home Life Is Fodder for ‘Modern Family’

April 14, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Crew 
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 26:  Executive pr...
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Jewish Journal has an interview with Steven Levitan, co-creator and executive producer of ABC’s “Modern Family”. Here are some of the highlights:

In an interview, Levitan credited the success of “Modern Family” to its blending of diverse points of view. Levitan says he has “no filter” for his emotions; Lloyd, in his opinion, is reserved. Levitan believes that his own cultural sensibilities at times trickle down to the writing, while Lloyd sees no Jewish or religious sensibilities on the show.

“We certainly don’t delve into religion — second, after politics, on the list of show-killing topics – nor do we have any intention of doing so,” Lloyd wrote in an e-mail.

“One of our constant issues is, what level of fighting can these couples do?” Levitan added. He cited the remote-control argument between Claire and Phil: “They barely got into it, from my point of view, and Chris was like, ‘I think they’re too angry.’… But oftentimes, from our differences, the best [work] comes.”

Levitan, 48, acknowledges his strong cultural Jewish connection but says he is not religious. He grew up attending a Reform synagogue in suburban Chicago, where he aspired to become a writer from an early age. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin, he took a job as a reporter at Madison’s ABC affiliate because “I wanted to be on TV,” he said sheepishly.

So, why aren’t any of the “Modern Family” members Jewish? Casting, Levitan said. “I don’t subscribe to the thinking that people won’t fall in love with a Jewish family,” he explained. “But when you have actors like ours, they don’t look Jewish or seem Jewish. So even if some of the humor seems Jewish, we’re not avoiding the issue to play to a mass market.”

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Ty Burrell (“Modern Family”) To Present At The 31st College TV Awards

March 31, 2010 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Actors 




Ty Burrell, Chris Colfer, Jennie Garth, Kelly Osbourne,

Peter Facinelli, Jim Parsons, Busy Philipps, Kerr Smith,

the Cast of MTV’s “The Buried Life,” and More Tapped to Present

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CA, Mar. 31, 2010 – The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation announced today a slate of celebrity presenters for the upcoming 31st College Television Awards.  This year, more than 600 students from 156 schools across 38 states entered the competition.  Of this group, 24 projects across 11 categories will be honored at the gala ceremony hosted, for the 4thconsecutive year, by Tom Bergeron (“Dancing with the Stars”) on April 10th at the Renaissance Hotel in Hollywood.

Presenters at the ceremony include a long list of television stars: Paris Barclay (“In Treatment”), Yvette Nicole Brown (“Community”), Ty Burrell (“Modern Family”), Chris Colfer (“Glee”), Peter Facinelli (“Twilight,” “Nurse Jackie”), Hill Harper (“CSI: NY”), Pat Harvey (“KCAL 9 News”), Gillian Jacobs (“Community”), Tim Kang (“The Mentalist”), Benito Martinez (“The Sheild”), Kelly Osbourne, Jim Parsons (“The Big Bang Theory”), Busy Philipps (“Cougar Town”), Amanda Righetti (“The Mentalist”), Kerr Smith (“Life Unexpected”), Jon Tenney (“The Closer”) and the cast of the MTV’s “The Buried Life.”

Television producer, philanthropist and disability rights activist Loreen Arbus, and television star Robert David Hall (“CSI: Crime Scene Investigation”) will present the Loreen Arbus Focus on Disability Scholarships, which focus on the needs, achievements and contributions of people with disabilities. Loreen Arbus, the first woman television executive in America to head up programming at a major network (Showtime and Lifetime), is committed to heightening awareness and support of people with disabilities through this scholarship program and her work with United Cerebral Palsy, the organization co-founded by her parents, Isabelle and Leonard H. Goldenson, Founder/Chairman, ABC.

“The College Television Awards has become a tremendous vehicle for spotting new talent in the industry,” said Television Academy Foundation Executive Director Terri Clark.   “We’re thrilled that such an accomplished group of presenters will join us in honoring the next generation of television industry leaders.”

In addition to honoring student work, the College Television Awards gala is an opportunity for this talented group of students, and soon-to-be industry professionals, to meet and network with high-level Hollywood decision-makers.  Past winners’ work has caught the attention of top Hollywood executives and kick-started careers.  Shane Acker’s College Television Award-winning short film “9” was later produced into a full length film by Tim Burton.  Jorge Gutierrez’s “El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera” was picked up by Nickelodeon and went on to win an Emmy.

The College Television Awards recognizes excellence in undergraduate and graduate student work in the areas of video, digital production and film production by students around the country.  The awards honor work in 11 categories including: Animation, Children, Comedy, Commercial, Documentary, Drama, Magazine, Music Composition and Music Best Use, Newscast and Narrative Series.  Information on how to purchase tickets to the College Television Awards can be found on the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation website.  Winners’ work will be showcased at a special screening hosted by Kevin Frazier (“Entertainment Tonight”) on Sunday April 11th at the Foundation’s Leonard H. Goldenson Theatre adjacent to the Television Academy in North Hollywood.

About the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation

Established in 1959 as the charitable arm of the Television Academy, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation preserves and celebrates the history of the medium while educating and guiding those who will shape its future. Prominent among its many initiatives are the Archive of American Television, education programs such as the College Television Awards and its renowned student internship program, all of which utilize the resources of the Television Academy.  For more information about the Foundation, its many programs and services, please visit emmysfoundation.org.

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