‘Modern Family’ Cast and Co-Creator Celebrate Mitch and Cam’s Wedding: ‘It’s Big and Puffy’

The ABC sitcom family talks to TheWrap at a reception for the network’s monumental gay wedding

The fifth season of ABC hit comedy “Modern Family” will wrap Wednesday night with the highly anticipated wedding of Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Eric Stonestreet‘s characters Mitch and Cam.

In case you hadn’t heard, it’s a gay wedding — not the first in TV history, but arguably one of the biggest.

For one of the funniest sitcoms on TV, Wednesday’s top show may also be the nicest — which is what makes it such a rarity. TheWrap joined the cast on the Fox lot Monday to celebrate the TV nuptials and talk about the balance of comedy and sincerity that viewers can expect to see tonight.

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Steve Levitan, co-creator: “Our unofficial motto is ‘comedy first.’ We want emotion we want to send a message but if its not funny then people are going to lose interest really fast. So I think its got an abundance of heart but I also think that it’s a really funny episode.”

Eric Stonestreet, (Cam): “It’s weird to say that ‘courage’ is writing a sincere, sweet show. But we know that comedy had gotten snarky and cool and hip and I think our show is all of that and more. We have three great interwoven stories and I think that we are the only, comedy at least, on TV that does that well.”

“[Our] first and foremost goal is to make an audience laugh. [The fact] that we have these two characters on our show that also get to check in and be cultural touchstones for people who may have questions or may not know what a gay wedding might be — this TV show transcends that.”

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Jesse Tyler Ferguson, (Mitchell): “If you are going to have a very sincere moment you have to earn those moments. You have to make sure the audience is with you and knows those characters. That’s how we can go to this place of having a really beautiful wedding because the audience knows these characters. It’s not something we would have been able to achieve in the first season.”

Ed O’Neill, (Jay): “It wasn’t just another episode because we had a lot of moving parts. I mean there were a lot of story lines. It was very, very difficult and complicated; a lot of guest actors and a lot of people. The major thrust of it was this wedding. It was very important to a lot of people on the show: a lot of writers, a lot of actors, guest actors. We were very much in concert with getting it right, and hopefully we did.”

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Nolan Gould, (Luke): “It’s really serious, it’s really sincere, but it’s also really funny. We can’t wait to get the response out of our audience — it’s going to be great.”

Sarah Hyland, (Haley): “It’s a wedding … everyone cries at wedding and if you don’t, then, OK. I just don’t know how you can’t cry at a wedding. When two people who love each other so much are sharing loving words in front of everyone that they love: I think its amazing.”

Julie Bowen, (Claire): “Ratcheting it up happens by nature of there being a wedding. It’s big and puffy and it’s been such a nice story, but at the same time, really it was just about the people and telling a fun story. Everyone knows … walking down the aisle and saying ‘I Do,’ so how do you make that fun, and how do you make it interesting and how do you make it exciting, regardless of gay, straight, in between?”

Ty Burrell, (Phil): “I hope it feels like a normal … regular “Modern Family” episode. It is kind of an emotional episode, but it has more to do with the fact that we’ve all known each other for five years and we love each other and it was just sort of like an emotional scene. We’ve never really been that political of a show, you know what I mean?”

“I think it would be more political if Mitch and Cam were sort of trying to circumvent the law, but you know, it being legal in California just felt more like just a wedding, which I guess is what we’re hoping for in general … that it’s just a wedding.”