Modern Family took three big Primetime Emmy Award wins early in the show Sunday night, with Julie Bowen and Eric Stonestreet winning best supporting actress and actor, respectively, and co-creator Steve Levitan taking home directing honors.
Stonestreet beat out co-stars Ed O'Neill, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and last year's winner, Ty Burell, for the win, but he told reporters in the press room outside the Nokia Theatre at L.A. Live that there is no rivalry among the ABC show's cast.
"We love each other, absolutely, 100 percent," he said. "Maybe that won't always be the case, but there's no competition between any of us."
Stonestreet, whose Emmy win Sunday marked his second overall, added that he was rooting for all his fellow Modern Family nominees, which also included Sofia Vergara.
"It's nice to win, but we want to spread it around, too," he added
For her part, Bowen -- whose win marked her second consecutive in the category -- also lamented that Vergara has yet to win.
"She doesn't get the credit she deserves as an actress," Bowen said. "She is talented and amazing, and there are only a few of us that realize that she just doesn't play herself. .... She deserves one of these [Emmys] too."
Levitan, meanwhile, said he was surprised that the show, which also has won best comedy series the past two years, is still getting love from the Emmy voters after three seasons.
"I'm praying that everybody doesn't get sick of us," he quipped. "This has far exceeded my expectations. Those are incredible co-nominees in this category, and I did not expect it. My money was on Palestinian Chicken. I'm a bit shocked but very grateful."
He added that he hopes the show has helped pave the way for more lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender characters on TV.
"Every time there's a show like Modern Family or Will & Grace or any show that portrays gay or lesbian char and it's successful, it further opens the door and makes executives feel that much more comfortable in that subject matter," he said. "I imagine we played a small role in giving people permission to open this door."
Levitan also turned to politics, saying he hopes that all political candidates will eventually support marriage equality, even though "it's never been the agenda of Modern Family. First and foremost, we've alwasy tried to make people laugh and tell relatable and human stories."
Meanwhile, Bowen -- who cheered when Veep star Julia Louis-Dreyfus was announced as best comedy actress backstage -- mentioned presidential candidates' wives in her remarks.
"We obviously don't pretent to be important in the way of national matters, but I love that Ann Romney and Michelle Obama said it is their favorite show," she said. "It's a place on the couch where people can come together. It shows that laughing is what matters."
Stonestreet seconded that thought, saying his fellow Modern Family actors work hard to make viewers laugh.
"We're very serious about the busienss of comedy, and we're constantly trying to make the scene the best one possible," he added. "You don't become an actor because you like to rest on your laurels."
- Modern Family
- Julie Bowen
- Eric Stonestreet
- Sofia Vergara