'Modern Family' cast TV's first openly transgender child actor

By Sarah Mulé  |  Sept. 27, 2016 at 12:37 PM
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LOS ANGELES, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Modern Family has become the first show in TV history to cast an openly transgender child actor when they signed 8-year-old Jackson Millarker to a guest spot.

Millarker appears as Tom, a new friend of Lily, played by Aubrey Anderson-Emmons. Lily's dads, played by Eric Stonestreet and Jesse Tyler Ferguson, think they hear Lily insult Tom during a playdate, and they then use that moment to continue to teach Lily about openmindedness and inclusion.

The episode's director, Ryan Case, shared a photo of herself with Millarker on Instagram, breaking the news of his upcoming appearance.

"This is Jackson Millarker. He's 8 years old, from Atlanta, and just happen to be transgender. He plays Lily's friend Tom in this week's Modern Family and he's wonderful," Case said. "One of the many reasons I love being a part of this show."

Case also shared a link to a story about the episode on Twitter, saying she was "so proud" to have directed Millarker.

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