Phil Dunphy of ABC’s Modern Family is one TV’s favorite dads, but a recent interview with USA Today reveals Matt LeBlanc could have actually played the beloved character.
LeBlanc told the newspaper in 2009 he was offered the role of Phil Dunphy during his run on the NBC Friends spin-off, Joey, but turned it down.
“I remember reading it thinking, this is a really good script, [but] I’m not the guy for this,” he said. “I’d be doing the project an injustice to take this,” he said. “I know what I can do, I know what I can’t do. Plus, I’m having too much fun laying on the couch.”
The role later went to Ty Burrell, who won two Emmys. Casting director, Jeff Greenberg first revealed the news about LeBlanc’s offer to play Phil in an interview with E! News in 2013, who also shared that Craig T. Nelson was the original choice for the role of Jay Pritchett, which subsequently went to Ed O’Neill.
Burrell prevailed though, helping make Modern Family the network’s biggest comedy hit in years. The sitcom begins its ninth season next month, with a 10th guaranteed.
Photo credit: ABC / 20th Century FOX