How 'Modern Family's' Groundbreaking Episode Was Made

Hit show breaks ground with a new episode shot entirely on iPhones and iPads.

“The whole thing began when I was FaceTiming with my daughter, who’s at college,” the show’s co-creator, Steve Levitan, told ABC News. “There were some emails that were open, some Web sites I’d been on and maybe a script I was working on at the time.”

From that experience came tonight’s episode, which takes place entirely on the Mac laptop of Julie Bowen's character, Claire Dunphy, as she waits for a plane and FaceTimes with the rest of her family on their phones.

“We have 11 or 12 characters that all appear this way,” said Levitan. “I think people were somewhat cautious about it in the beginning, shall we say.”

Actor Rico Rodriguez, who plays Manny Delgado in the show, calls the concept “amazing” and “so different.”

The episode was filmed in two days -- a “pretty amazing” amount of time, according to Rodriguez -- and got the thumbs-up from the actor.

“Last week all the cast and crew went and screened it and it was a pretty amazing episode,” Rodriguez said. “I got lost in the story even though I knew exactly what was going to happen.”

“I was like, ‘Whoa, this is crazy,’” he said.