Modern Family to film in Whitsundays
THE entire cast of the hit US comedy series Modern Family are on their way to the Whitsundays where scenes for an Australian vacation episode will be filmed next week.
The television sitcom about the extended Pritchett family has won a total of 65 awards, including a Golden Globe for Best Television Series, four consecutive Emmy Awards and a BAFTA for Best International in 2012. It airs in Australia and is Network Ten and the ABC television network's top-rated comedy series.
The show stars Ed O'Neill as Jay, Julie Bowen as Claire, Ty Burrell as Phil, Sofía Vergara as Gloria, Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell, Eric Stonestreet as Cameron, Sarah Hyland as Haley, Nolan Gould as Luke, Ariel Winter as Alex, Rico Rodriguez as Manny and Aubrey Anderson-Emmons as Lily.
Co-creator and executive producer Steve Levitan, who will direct the "Australia" episode, said the crew was excited about coming to Queensland.
"We just had to go to Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef since, like [actress] Sofia Vergara, it's one of the natural wonders of the world," he said.
Whitsundays Marketing and Development Limited (WMDL) acting chief executive officer Daryl Hudson said he was absolutely thrilled that the production team chose the Whitsundays as a location to film.
"This is the first time the show has filmed an episode outside of the US and it provides an immense exposure for our region," he said.
Whitsunday mayor Jennifer Whitney said the fact that the Whitsundays made the cut showed once again that the region was gaining international renown as a film-friendly location.
Arts Minister Ian Walker said Modern Family was the latest success story for Queensland, joining the likes of Angelina Jolie's directorial debut Unbroken, which wrapped up filming in Airlie on February 4.
"Modern Family is a hugely popular show and it's very exciting for our tourism industry to know that places like the Great Barrier Reef and Hayman Island will be seen by millions of people right round the world," Mr Walker said.
"We've been working hard to make Queensland a great place to do business and this deal was made possible through Screen Queensland's Production Incentive Program," he said.
Minister Walker thanked new Screen Queensland CEO Tracey Vieira for her assistance in getting the contract over the line.