Modern Family has been one of the most popular and successful sitcoms on the new century. For those unfamiliar with the show, Modern Family portrays the foibles of the Pritchett family and the ups and downs of being a modern family. The Pritchett family, is made up of three different couples: a gay couple with an adopted daughter, the other a middle class one with three children, and the other, the wealthy patriarch (played by Ed O’Neill of Married With Children fame) with a younger wife. The show represents a diverse family and asks the question of what exactly a family is. It’s progressive and open minded, much like Portland, Oregon.
My favorite character on the show is Phil Dunphy (and, as evidenced by his eight straight Primetime Emmy nominations, I am not alone in this), a dim witted but fun dad portrayed by Ty Burrell. Burrell hails from the state of Oregon and, while he owns homes in both Los Angeles and New York, he can still be spotted around Portland, Oregon. And he fits right in.
Ty Burrell was born on August 22nd 1967 in Grants Pass, Oregon. He began his career on Broadway before moving to the big screen in 2001 in the film Evolution. He has since appeared in Black Hawk Down, the Incredible Hulk and has provided voices for Finding Dory and Storks. You may also recognize Mr Burrell from the hilarious Gain detergent commercials, you now, the ones where he is stranded on a desert island but is overjoyed that his clothes are still fresh and clean smelling.
Ty Burrell married Holly Burrell in 2000 and they have two adopted daughters. Mr. Burrell can also often be seen courtside at Portland Trail Blazer games or on the sidelines of the University of Oregon Ducks football games. In November of 2014, Burrell signed a deal with 20th Century Fox Television to advance his own comedy projects. In June 2016, his web series Boondoggle. roughly based on his own life, debuted on Abc.com. Like many Oregonians and Portlanders, Burrell has a passion for the arts and food. He loves sports and he loves children. These values are represented through his character, Phil Dunphy, and are indicative of his Oregon upbringing.
While Ty Burrell may not be a resident of Portland, he still fits in with the aesthetic here and he’s bringing that aesthetic to Hollywood. He loves his fans and often takes time to sign an autograph and have a conversation. Living in Portland, you have a really good chance to coming across this funny man.