Matt LeBlanc’s name is almost interchangeable with his earnest, playboy Friends character Joey Tribbiani — but he could have had another legacy altogether.
The actor revealed in a surprising new interview published this weekend that he was offered the role of Phil Dunphy on Modern Family, but that he turned down the opportunity.
“I remember reading it thinking, ‘this is a really good script, (but) I’m not the guy for this,'” he told USA Today. “I’d be doing the project an injustice to take this. I know what I can do, I know what I can’t do. Plus, I’m having too much fun laying on the couch.”
The producers had their eyes on Ty Burrell when they wrote the role of Phil, so it is likely that LeBlanc made the move he thought most appropriate for his career. (If he didn’t identify with the character, it would have been much more challenging to bring him to life.) Burrell went on to be nominated for nine Emmy awards for his portrayal of the goofy, out-of-touch, human dad-joke Phil, so perhaps it is all for the best.
Still, for Friends fans, envisioning LeBlanc in the role, adapting the character’s quirky jokes and Modern Family‘s sizable fan-base, is a delicious rabbit hole to go down.
Who knows how Phil’s character would have evolved with LeBlanc in the role? Is
Joey Matt capable of portraying a character who isn’t even the tiniest bit suave?