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Ty Burrell’s Plan to Get Ed O’Neill a ‘Modern Family’ Emmy

Burrell wouldn’t mind more competition in the supporting actor category

Ty Burrell didn’t mind competing with two of his "Modern Family" castmates at last year's Emmys. In fact, he wishes he'd had a little more competition.

Ed O'Neill wasn't nominated with Burrell, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Eric Stonestreet in the supporting comedic actor category, which Stonestreet won. But Burrell, who plays befuddled dad Phil Dunphy, has an idea to score O'Neill a nomination down the line.

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"We feel like such an even ensemble that it was weird that Ed wasn't involved in that part of the process," Burrell told TheWrap. "It just feels strange when any of us are separated from the pack because we each feel so much like we each carry the same amount of the load."

All the show's lead actors, in the spirit of teamwork, submit themselves in the supporting actor category. But Burrell believes O'Neill should consider submitting himself for best comedic actor. (This year O'Neill, like his castmates, is again submitted in the supporting category.)

"I think it's very admirable that Ed is supporting himself as supporting, but there certainly wouldn't be any hard feelings if somewhere down the road we changed that up a little bit," Burrell said, adding that it especially makes sense since O'Neill plays "the patriarch of the family."

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Burrell also talked to TheWrap about the competition from "Glee," how Google autocompletes his name, and why he moved to the Salt Lake City area, where he lives when he isn't shooting "Modern Family" in Los Angeles. (The interview was conducted before "Glee" star Jane Lynch was named to host the Emmys, so his kind words about her aren't kissing up to the host.)

Your show is often pitted against "Glee" in comedy categories. Do you ever watch "Glee" and think it isn't a comedy?
No, because I've seen enough episodes to really admire what Jane Lynch is doing. It's true that the show is covering several genres and it's hard because there isn’t a category for, sort of, musical comedy or a category that might best suit it. But you know she's unbelievable. I just think she's amazing. It's definitely covering more than the comedy genre but I don’t know what other category it would go in. … It seems like just sort of a tricky situation for them.

Do you ever Google yourself?
I used to Google myself and I think I'm just too sensitive.

When I Googled your name, the first autocomplete that appeared was "Ty Burrell shirtless."
That's hilarious. Is it under traumatic experiences?

It's not, no. And the first autocomplete for Sofia Vergara is "Sofia Vergara Twitter." What do you think it means?
That's interesting. I just think I'm kind of a huge international sex symbol and Sofia Vergara is known for being more of a computer nerd.

Before you were cast on "Modern Family," you moved to Salt Lake City. Did you think you might devote less of your life to acting?
We moved here because we love Utah so much. This is the landscape we love most in the world, really. We moved here also because my wife had family here. It wasn't very practical because we really didn’t think about the rest of it until after we'd moved here, and it was getting pretty tricky finding work from here and getting "Modern Family" really bailed me out. It’s a very low-key, simple place to live and we don’t regret that decision at all. It's been made a lot simpler having the show do well, for sure.

How long do you want the show to go on?
There's a part of me, honestly, that would just like the show to run forever because its an incredibly creative process. I've worked a lot of different jobs, like most actors, and to find one where you like the people and you feel consistently creative… I don’t necessarily want this job to end ever. I would be happy doing it when Phil is having trouble remembering where he is.