"Modern Family" co-creator Steve Levitan says he’s lobbied ABC TV Group president Anne Sweeney to take his show offline, because two million people watch its episodes online when they could be supporting the comedy on ad-supported television, reports the Hollywood Reporter’s The Live Feed blog.
According to the article, Levitan said, "We’re making it far too easy to watch it on other mediums and not getting proper credit for it. If we weren’t on Hulu and ABC.com, why don’t we try that? … I’ve actively lobbied to look at the big picture," Levitan said during a coffee break at the Television Critics Association press tour. If online viewing and DVR usage were added, the show could rank in the top three, he said. Still, other networks have tried similar experiments, the article says. "Gossip Girl," for one, was pulled offline by The CW to see if ratings improved, which they didn’t, the article points out.
Talking about the abrupt resignation of ABC Entertainment Group President Steve McPherson on July 27th, Levitan said, according to the story, "My genuine reaction was that it sucks and I’m sorry to hear it," Levitan said. "We’ve had the best of Steve on our show. He was a longtime friend, we go way back. We took ‘Modern Family’ to ABC because of Steve, because he said he would support it. While I hear wonderful things about [McPherson replacement, former ABC Family President] Paul Lee, I like people who shoot from the hip. You knew where you stood with Steve and I respected that."