Eric Stonestreet: Modern Family's Moon Man

From bumping butts with a TV legend to being showered with equal praise by the stroller set and the bear community, Modern Family star Eric Stonestreet is thrilled to be pushing the gay movement forward.




Since Jesse Tyler Ferguson is gay and you’re not, have you looked to him for any insight on gay relationships?
Absolutely. We have a great relationship and talk about it all the time. He certainly knows when our lines don’t ring true and weighs in on that. I had a great time at his birthday party in October. Afterward I said, “Where are we going?” And he said, “We’re going to a gay bar, but don’t worry because there’s going to be women there.” Of course, we get there and there’s one woman in the place. All his friends were cracking up because everybody wanted to talk to Jesse and I. Us out together is seriously nuts because everybody thinks we’re a real couple. We just flew together to Las Vegas for an event and people were like, “So, are you guys really dating?” Jesse’s quick to say no, but I’m always like, “What are you so embarrassed of? Yeah, we’re dating! Who cares?” [Laughs] But obviously we’re not.

Was it a conscious decision not to show any physical affection between Cameron and Mitchell so as to make a gay relationship more palatable for more conservative viewers?
People always ask me why there’s not more affection on the show, but these guys are elbow-deep in raising a baby, so affection gets shoved down the list. That happens in straight relationships too. Talk to any guy with a newborn baby, ask him how often he’s getting some action, and he’ll fill you in.

So should we not hold our breath for a same-sex kiss?
Hopefully our show will still be on the air when gay marriage passes, and I would imagine that Cameron and Mitchell will then get married. They were married in the original script, but everybody thought we should hold on to that nugget for the potentially near future. So as far as a kiss goes, I think it will happen in a real way that doesn’t draw attention to itself, because that’s not the kind of show it is. Jesse has nibbled on my ear in an outtake, so maybe that’ll be on the DVD extras.

I don’t know how often you Google yourself, but your picture is up on a number of bear websites. Do you mind being sexually objectified?
It cracks me up. Somebody tweeted me a picture of Cameron in a bathrobe from the last episode and thanked me for showing a little more skin and hair. I feel so insecure about my back hair and chest hair, so I love that somebody out there appreciates it. I’m flattered. As an actor you hope one day to work, so to then have fans who follow and support you, I couldn’t care less who or what they are. I’ve also gotten some nice gifts, cookies, flowers, and some very suggestive letters, and I love it. I meet gay guys out all the time who want to hug me and thank me, so how could I have a problem with that?

Tags: television