BIGASK

Herald Sun - Switched On - - On The Couch -

BY COLIN VICK­ERY

IT IS a case of third time lucky for Ty Bur­rell. The 43-year-old ac­tor starred in two rat­ings duds by sit­com cre­ator Christo­pher Lloyd— Out of Prac­tice and Back to You.

But Bur­rell has hit pay­dirt with Lloyd’s Mod­ern Fam­ily. He plays try-hard dad Phil Dun­phy, who lives with highly strung wife Claire (Julie Bowen) and kids Ha­ley (Sarah Hy­land), Alex (Ariel Win­ter) and Luke (Nolan Gould).

Bur­rell is in a play­ful mood when we speak at the home of Mod­ern Fam­ily — the Fox Stu­dios in Los An­ge­les. Howdo you and Julie stand each other on the show? It takes a lot of booze. Phil can be a real pain some­times . . . One of the lux­u­ries of hav­ing a sec­ond sea­son is that we’re get­ting a chance to see dif­fer­ent sides of the char­ac­ter. There’s an episode about him lov­ing cheesy movies. Howdo you think Phil has changed on the show? The first im­age of Phil was sort of al­most like hip-hop Phil, which is funny, but I think it would be re­ally lim­it­ing if you were try­ing to play it all the time. The writers have re­ally sub­tly ex­panded him into a lot of dif­fer­ent ar­eas. What do you have in com­mon with Phil? I think I have a gen­eral obliv­i­ous­ness that Phil has. I think we share that. Do you feel bad about the way Phil talks to his kids, some­times, for ex­am­ple, call­ing them stupid? No, I don’t feel bad. I think it’s just funny. I think that the au­di­ence know that these peo­ple re­ally love their kids. What is it like work­ing with so many kids on Mod­ern Fam­ily? One of the most fas­ci­nat­ing things is the dif­fer­ences be­tween Rico (Ro­driguez, who plays Manny Del­gado), and Nolan (Gould, who plays his son Luke Dun­phy) and their char­ac­ters. Rico is the op­po­site of his char­ac­ter — a to­tal kid at heart. Nolan is a ge­nius. Were you sur­prised by the warm re­cep­tion to the show? Very sur­prised. I’d never had a job for more than a cou­ple of months (be­fore Mod­ern Fam­ily). Do you think Mod­ern Fam­ily would have been pos­si­ble 20 years ago? I would say some ma­te­rial was even harsher (back then). Mod­ern Fam­ily, Chan­nel 10, Sun­day, 6.30pm

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