Modern Family brings Australian social media storm and high hopes for tourism dollars

Behind the scenes of Modern Family posted on Twitter today … is this filming for the episode leading to the Pritchett-Tucker’s holiday in Australia?Modern Family’s casting call for extras

Sydney remains in the grasp of Modern Family madness, with the show’s stars spotted in Manly, Bondi Beach and Circular Quay yesterday.

This morning, filming has reportedly begun at Woolloomooloo and the restaurants at Finger Wharf.

And tourism bosses are hoping the filming of the one-off episode of the hit comedy will follow the success of other lucrative visitors such as the Oprah and Ellen shows.

Tourism Australia head of corporate affairs Karen Halbert said: “Inviting Oprah [Winfrey] and Ellen [DeGeneres] to film Down Under brought huge global audiences and showcased the best of our country and I’m sure this will be no different with Modern Family.

“Whatever the family members get up to, I’m sure many of our iconic attractions will end up playing a starring role and help generate fantastic global exposure for our country.”

Twitter was abuzz with photos of the stars around Sydney, posted by fans and by the actors themselves.

After being mobbed on arrival at Sydney Airport yesterday morning, Sofia Vergara was spotted near her hotel in Circular Quay and in Manly, including dining at the restaurant Hugo’s.

Nolan Gould, who plays Luke, armed himself with a surfboard, headed to Bondi and bragged on Twitter that he had made it to the beach within a couple of hours of arriving in Australia.

It took me all of three and a half hours to make it to the beach after we landed in Sydney. http://t爱杭州同城论坛/pLOOMLUf10— Nolan Gould (@Nolan_Gould) February 18, 2014

Eric Stonestreet (Cam) was spotted around the CBD and was happy to be photographed with fans. He also nominated the Playfair Cafe as having the “best coffee in The Rocks”.

Ed O’Neill bemused fans greeting him at the airport by wearing a Rabbitohs hat, to which the club declared on Twitter that they would love to host him.

@russellcrowe The Modern Family guys have arrived to shoot in Sydney… Check out Ed O’Neill’s hat! pic.twitter爱杭州同城论坛m/I1XFjmJjYL— Rabbit (@RabbitOnNova) February 18, 2014

Winfrey’s 2010 filming here saw almost half of subsequent US visitors saying they had been inspired to visit Australia because of the Oprah show, while Qantas reported a 22 per cent increase in inbound flights following DeGeneres’ trip last year.

It comes at a time when US arrivals have hit record figures, an all-time high of 508,700 last year, beating the previous high around the Sydney Olympics, by more than 20,000.

As well as filming in Sydney, the production will shift to Hayman Island for two days next week. Show co-creator, director and writer Steven Levitan said: “We just had to go to the Great Barrier Reef since, like Sofia Vergara, it’s one of the natural wonders of the world.”

ON THE BLOG: @ModernFam stars share the love in Sydney #ModernFamilyAUS. Details here –>http://t爱杭州同城论坛/vdfBOZWKXU— Jayden Forster (@CelebrityLane1) February 18, 2014

MT “@WoollyBayHotel: #ModernFamilyAUS filming on the wharf! Star watching at its best! pic.twitter爱杭州同城论坛m/IzMgTeFYYv”— 2DayFM 104.1 (@2DayFM) February 18, 2014

The Australian special, which is expected to score 125 million viewers worldwide when it’s first broadcast, will be filming in Sydney and Queensland until February 28.