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‘Schitt’s Creek’ Star Eugene Levy on the ‘Blurred Line’ of Playing Real-Life Son Daniel’s Dad on Screen

TheWrap Emmy magazine: ”It’s hard to separate sometimes,“ Levy says

This story about “Schitt’s Creek” stars Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara first appeared in the Down to the Wire issue of TheWrap’s Emmy magazine.

Eugene Levy has two kids on the Emmy-nominated Pop sitcom “Schitt’s Creek.” His onscreen wife, Catherine O’Hara, feels as if she does, too.

The duo — each of whom scored a nod from the Television Academy for Season 5 of the series, which received its first-ever nom for Outstanding Comedy Series — play the formerly filthy rich Moira and Johnny Rose, parents to former spoiled brats David (Daniel Levy) and Alexis (Annie Murphy).

While Levy actually is the father of Daniel (with whom he co-created the series) and “Schitt’s” actress Sarah Levy (who plays waitress Twyla Sands), O’Hara’s own parental connection to the show is purely fictional — though that hasn’t stopped her from becoming invested in her offspring.

“As their mother, I’m already so happy to get to know them, to get a second chance to be their mother, and to see them grow in such a beautiful, confident way every day — to find true love, in either of their cases,” said O’Hara, whose character is an eccentric former soap opera star who wasn’t exactly mentally present during her children’s formative years, but who has become more attached to them since the family was forced to move to the titular town — their only remaining asset after going flat broke.

“I wouldn’t say which relationship turns out to be true love, and which…” She stopped, wary of dispensing spoilers. “Oh, dear.”

Eugene Levy admitted “it’s kind of a blurred line” when he goes in front of the camera to play father to his real son. But that helps him, in a way.

“You know what it is? Sometimes your real life kind of bleeds into the fictional life,” Levy said. “It’s hard to separate sometimes. Even with ‘American Pie,’ I felt such a familial bond with Jason [Biggs] that I would treat him the way I guess I would treat my own kids. It felt very familiar at times in front of the camera.

“The same goes for ‘Schitt’s Creek.’ There were moments were I’m working with my kids on camera where I feel like I’m dealing with Daniel and with Sarah. It’s really hard to separate Twyla from Sarah. And in the same sense, I call Alexis ‘honey’ a lot on the show, and I call Sarah ‘honey’ a lot in real life. The love I have for my own daughter helps me feel that love with Annie Murphy. Although it doesn’t take a lot to make me feel love for Annie Murphy — she’s just the sweetest thing.”

And in case you were wondering, if given the opportunity to pick between his real son and his fake son played by his real son, Levy says he’d “take Daniel over David.”

Read more from the Down to the Wire issue of TheWrap’s Emmy magazine

EmmyWrap Down to the Wire 2019

EmmyWrap Down to the Wire 2019