For 11 seasons, Modern Family was one of the most beloved comedies on television. It told the story of three separate households of the central extended family as they dealt with marriage, kids, and a lot of crazy situations.
The series was very successful and was able to get plenty of big-name stars to pop up every once in a while, including Elizabeth Banks and Edward Norton. But some of those guest stars didn’t become famous until after appearing on Modern Family. It’s fun to look back on these early guest-starring roles knowing the actors would soon hit it big.
10 Robbie Amell
Though he may not be a household name yet, Robbie Amell is quickly building an impressive career in Hollywood with some standout roles. He got a lot of attention for his recurring role in CW’s The Flash as Ronnie Raymond, aka Firestorm, and showed off his comedic talents in the popular horror-comedy The Babysitter.
Before all of that, he briefly popped up in a Season 6 episode of Modern Family as Chase, Haley Dunphy’s attractive yet simple date. Though he played a small part, Amell showed off some good comedic skills.
9 Lauren Cohan
Fans of The Walking Dead will instantly recognize Lauren Cohan, who played Maggie Greene on the popular horror series since its second season. Cohan has also popped up in some big movies, such as the action film Mile 22 alongside Mark Wahlberg and as Martha Wayne in Batman V Superman.
In the second season of Modern Family, Mitchell and Cam are trying to get their adopted daughter Lily into a prestigious preschool. Cohan has a tiny role as the secretary they meet before the meeting. Interestingly, it is a rare role in which Cohan gets to use her actual British accent.
8 Josh Gad
Josh Gad is one of those actors who came out of nowhere and seems to be in everything these days. After a long and successful career on Broadway, Gad has had some big movie roles recently, including Beauty and the Beast and Murder on the Orient Express as well as voicing the beloved Olaf in the Frozen films.
Before finding all that Hollywood success, Gad appeared in season 3 as the Dunphys’ overly affectionate former neighbor Kenneth, who has since become a tech billionaire.
7 Stephanie Beatriz
One of the most popular comedies on television now is Brooklyn Nine-Nine. The cop sitcom is filled with so many lovable characters and one fan-favorite in the cast is Rosa Diaz, the tough and serious detective, played by Stephanie Beatriz.
Before joining that hit comedy, Beatriz had a memorable recurring role as Sonia, Gloria’s quiet and intense sister on Modern Family. After first appearing in the role back in Season 4, Beatriz returned a few more times with her last appearance being in the show’s final season.
6 Aya Cash
Aya Cash may not be a household name, but she helped create one of the most talked-about television characters of 2020. In the hit Amazon show The Boys, Cash joined the second season as Stormfront, an in-your-face superhero with some pretty shocking secrets who begins a disturbing relationship with Homelander.
Cash gave a much less scary performance in Modern Family‘s sixth season as Vanessa, a recruiter for Princeton whom Alex Dunphy tries to woo with some outlandish stories that separate her from the other applicants.
5 Kaitlyn Dever
Though she is still very young, Kaitlyn Dever has already had an impressive career in Hollywood. Recently, she has become one of the most sought-after young talents with breakout roles in the comedy Booksmart and the harrowing miniseries drama Unbelievable.
One of Dever’s first acting roles on-screen was in the very first season of Modern Family. She played Bianca, a classmate of Manny whom he tries to impress at Luke’s birthday party.
4 Daniel Levy
Emmy history was made this year when the Canadian sitcom Schitt’s Creek swept the awards in all major comedy categories. This was an especially huge win for Daniel Levy, who won several awards as creator, director, writer, and for his supporting performance as David Rose in the heartwarming series.
Though Levy had already been on Schitt’s Creek by the time he guest-starred on Modern Family, the show had yet to become a hit with audiences outside of Canada. Levy appeared in the tenth season of the show as a courtroom sketch artist who draws unflattering pictures of Mitchell.
3 Millie Bobby Brown
Millie Bobby Brown found great fame at a very young age as the badass superpowered Eleven in Netflix’s wildly popular series, Stranger Things. As a result of that star-making role, she has also appeared in films like Godzilla: King of Monsters and Enola Holmes.
Fans might not even be able to recognize Brown in the Season 6 episode of Modern Family. She plays Lizzie, a neighborhood girl who has her bike “borrowed” by Manny. Even with one single line, Brown shows off her young talent.
2 Winston Duke
Though the headlining heroes get most of the attention in the MCU, there are some supporting characters who really steal the show. In Black Panther, M’Baku, the leader of the mountain tribe, was a formidable, compelling, and hilarious addition thanks largely to the performance from Winston Duke. Since then, Duke has continued to impress with roles in Us and Spencer Confidential.
One of Duke’s early roles was as Dwight on Modern Family. In Season 8, Dwight was one of the players on Cam’s football team who moves in with them for a few episodes.
1 Lin-Manuel Miranda
Lin-Manuel Miranda is considered one of the most talented artists working in the business today. Along with several recent high-profile movie and television projects, Miranda is the creator and star of the hugely acclaimed and wildly successful Broadway musical Hamilton.
Given the talent Miranda has displayed on the stage, it’s funny to see him pop up in a small and silly role in Season 2 of Modern Family. He plays an aspiring entrepreneur who pitches his product to Jay.
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