Disclaimer: Disney and ABC invited me to Los Angeles on an all-expenses paid trip, in exchange for my coverage of these events, which included a set visit of The Real O’Neals. This visit happened just as ABC was heading into The Real O’Neals Season 2. As always, all opinions are my own.
While Walt Disney Studios is certainly home to the corporate offices of The Walt Disney Company, many don’t realize that it is still a live working studio – meaning, there are productions going on all the time.
You just never know who are you going to run into (so true, as I’ve walked by A-list celebrities on the sidewalk) or what is going on inside the buildings. Let me take you inside one of the buildings, as I was fortunate enough to visit the set of ABC’s The Real O’Neals, a Tuesday night comedy going into its’ second season behind The Middle and newcomer American Housewife. Yes, The Real O’Neals Season 2 is filmed right there on the backlot of Walt Disney Studios.
Meet David Windsor, Creator & Exec Producer, who graciously led us through the set along with cast members Bebe Wood and Matt Shively, who play two of the O’Neal children.
The cast was not filming at the time we were there, so it was extra fun for the two actors to follow us through the “house”. I think they were just as intrigued by the 25 of us bloggers as we were with them. 🙂
But let me backtrack a bit. Have you seen The Real O’Neals?
The O’Neal family continues its journey of self-discovery and growth, resulting from Kenny coming out and his parents, Eileen and Pat, getting divorced. After finally coming out, Kenny will discover that life outside the closet isn’t that easy. Luckily for him, his older brother, Jimmy, will always be there to offer his often-misguided advice. And finally, there’s Shannon, the youngest O’Neal, whose unique views on life make her wise beyond her years.
Eileen and Pat will continue to deal with starting their separate lives while still living under the same roof. Through it all, Aunt Jodi will be there offering her unusual brand of support, as the O’Neals continue to explore new relationships, friendships and acceptance of one another in the next, messier chapter of their lives.
Meet the Cast
Eileen O’Neal Played by Martha Plimpton.
Pat O’Neal Played by Jay Ferguson
Kenny O’Neal Played by Noah Galvin
Jimmy O’Neal Played by Matt Shively
Shannon O’Neal Played by Bebe Wood
Jodi O’Neal Played by Mary Hollis Inboden
The Real O’Neals remind me of what most families are yet hate to admit…dysfunctional. The O’Neals are far from the perfect family with no issues that they always had led others to believe. In reality, you’ve got a husband and wife going their separate ways and both finding comfort in the same person (yes, Eileen is secretly dating Pat’s new buddy). The kids are struggling with their own relationships and love lives. In the end, it’s all complicated and everyone discovers relationships are hard. Just like real life.
It was Christmas-time at The O’Neal house when we arrived.
Reds and greens adorned every corner of the house along with little items you would expect in any Catholic families’ house during the holidays. I spied a gorgeous manger set and had to agree, this was a home (albeit a television home) that reminded me of growing up.
Surprisingly the rooms in the house were normal-sized. I’d been on sets before where everything seemed so cramped for a house. This dining room is a great example. The only difference between this dining room and let’s say a real one, is the wide hole in the ceiling for lighting and cameras.
Matt Shively following along with us on the tour!
This living room!
While it was nothing like my parent’s house growing up, it completely reminded me of home. My mom was in love with Christmas. She had over 20 boxes in the attic just full of decorations, and truth be told, she never used them all in a given year. In the O’Neals house, there wasn’t a counter or table left bare. You’d find a Santa around every corner!
And the beautiful Christmas tree, full of what would be homemade ornaments, perhaps from the kids.
We all then went outside to take a tour of the backyard.
You didn’t know southern California got snow, did you? Ah, the magic of television! Actually, I saw boxes and boxes of fake snow on set!
What a fun experience and I’m so thankful that we all had the chance to go behind the scenes – if it’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that every set is completely different.
This will be Episode 3 of The Real O’Neals Season 2 – “The Real Halloween” airs TONIGHT, Tues 10/25 at 9:30/8:30c!
When Halloween arrives, or what Kenny refers to as “the gay Super Bowl,” he plans to go to Boystown to watch the festive costume parade. In an effort to prevent Kenny from attending, Eileen agrees to let him throw his own
Halloween party at home. Eileen’s tolerance is ultimately tested when Kenny recruits Stuart and his gay friends to join the big party, and he makes a BIG costume change. Meanwhile, Jimmy and Shannon plan to pull off an epic Halloween prank
Be sure to tune in tonight to catch all the laughs!
ABC Tuesday Night Comedies
Tuesday nights just got funnier!
- The Middle (8 p.m., ABC)
- American Housewife (8:30 p.m., ABC) – series premiere
- Fresh Off the Boat (9 p.m., ABC) – season premiere
- The Real O’Neals (9:30 p.m., ABC)
- Interview with ONCE UPON A TIME Creators and Executive Producers
- Red Carpet Premiere of Disney’s Queen of Katwe
- Lupita Nyong’o Interview
- Director Mira Nair Interview
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