Where does modern family take place?

HotbotBy HotBotUpdated: July 9, 2024

Setting and General Overview

"Modern Family," the critically acclaimed American television sitcom created by Christopher Lloyd and Steven Levitan, takes place in a vibrant, sprawling urban setting that is both contemporary and relatable. The show primarily unfolds in the bustling city of Los Angeles, California. This choice of location is integral to the series, providing a dynamic backdrop that complements the diverse and interconnected lives of the Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker clan.

Los Angeles: A Character in Itself

Los Angeles, often referred to simply as L.A., is not just a mere setting for "Modern Family" but serves as a character in its own right. The city’s eclectic mix of cultures, lifestyles, and visual aesthetics enriches the narrative and adds layers of authenticity to the family dynamics portrayed. The sunny weather, palm-lined streets, and iconic landmarks such as the Hollywood sign and Santa Monica Pier offer a picturesque and quintessentially Californian atmosphere that viewers have come to associate with the show.

Neighborhoods and Specific Locations

The show’s creators meticulously chose specific neighborhoods within Los Angeles to reflect the personalities and lifestyles of the characters.

Westside Los Angeles

Much of the action takes place in the affluent neighborhoods of Westside Los Angeles, including Brentwood and Westwood. These areas are known for their upscale homes, manicured lawns, and proximity to the beach, aligning well with the socio-economic status of the Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker clan.


Although not explicitly stated in the show, the Dunphy family home is filmed in a real house located in the Cheviot Hills neighborhood near Pasadena. This suburban setting provides a perfect contrast to the more urban environments seen elsewhere in the series, highlighting the family’s middle-class, suburban lifestyle.

Downtown Los Angeles

Downtown Los Angeles makes occasional appearances, showcasing the city’s vibrant urban core. Scenes set in downtown often feature the hustle and bustle of city life, complete with skyscrapers, busy streets, and diverse crowds, providing a stark contrast to the quieter, residential neighborhoods.

The Homes of "Modern Family"

The homes of the main characters are central to the series, serving as the primary settings for much of the show’s action and humor. These homes are meticulously designed to reflect the personalities and lifestyles of their inhabitants.

The Pritchett Home

Jay Pritchett’s home, shared with his much younger wife Gloria and their son Manny, is a luxurious, modern house that embodies Jay’s success and wealth. The house features a sleek, contemporary design with high-end furnishings, a large backyard, and a swimming pool, reflecting Jay’s status as a successful businessman.

The Dunphy Home

Phil and Claire Dunphy’s home is a spacious, comfortable, two-story house that epitomizes suburban family living. The house is warm and inviting, with a lived-in feel that reflects the chaotic, loving nature of the Dunphy family. The backyard, complete with a treehouse, is often featured in scenes involving the three Dunphy children.

The Tucker-Pritchett Home

Cameron Tucker and Mitchell Pritchett’s home is a charming, eclectic house that combines elements of both traditional and modern design. The home’s interior is a reflection of Cameron’s flamboyant personality and Mitchell’s more reserved nature, creating a unique and harmonious living space for the couple and their adopted daughter, Lily.

Filming Locations and Real-World Connections

While the show is set in Los Angeles, the actual filming locations sometimes differ from the on-screen depictions. The creators often use real homes and locations to add a sense of realism to the show.

Studio Filming

Many interior scenes are shot on sets built at the Fox Studios in Century City, Los Angeles. These meticulously crafted sets replicate the interiors of the characters’ homes, allowing for greater control over lighting, sound, and other production elements.

On-Location Filming

Exterior shots and certain scenes are filmed on-location throughout Los Angeles and its surrounding areas. This includes various public spaces, restaurants, and landmarks that help ground the show in its real-world setting. For example, scenes featuring the characters dining out or engaging in outdoor activities often use actual Los Angeles locations to maintain authenticity.

Symbolism and Thematic Significance

The choice of Los Angeles as the setting for "Modern Family" is not merely a backdrop but serves a deeper, thematic purpose. The city’s diversity and complexity mirror the show’s exploration of modern family dynamics, cultural intersections, and individual growth.

Diversity and Inclusion

Los Angeles is one of the most diverse cities in the United States, and this diversity is reflected in the show’s characters and storylines. The Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker family is a blend of different backgrounds, ethnicities, and sexual orientations, embodying the melting pot that is Los Angeles.

Change and Adaptation

The ever-evolving landscape of Los Angeles parallels the characters’ personal journeys and growth throughout the series. As the city changes, so do the characters, adapting to new challenges, relationships, and phases of their lives.

Local Culture and Influence

Los Angeles’ local culture heavily influences the show, from the characters’ hobbies and interests to the everyday activities they engage in.

Outdoor Lifestyle

The show frequently showcases the outdoor lifestyle that Los Angeles residents enjoy, such as beach outings, hiking, and barbecues. This emphasis on outdoor activities highlights the city’s favorable climate and the importance of physical wellness and recreation in the characters’ lives.

Entertainment Industry

Given Los Angeles’ status as the entertainment capital of the world, it’s no surprise that the show incorporates elements of the industry into its narrative. Characters like Phil Dunphy, who often dreams of stardom, reflect the city’s pervasive influence of Hollywood and the entertainment industry.

The setting of "Modern Family" in Los Angeles is a carefully crafted choice that enhances the show’s storytelling and character development. By situating the series in a city known for its diversity, dynamism, and cultural richness, the creators provide a vibrant and authentic backdrop that mirrors the complexities and joys of modern family life. Whether it’s the specific neighborhoods, the characters’ homes, or the symbolic significance of the city, Los Angeles is an integral part of what makes "Modern Family" resonate with audiences.

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