Openly gay Modern Family co-star Jesse Tyler Ferguson has called his on-screen boyfriend Eric Stonestreet “gay for pay.”

Ferguson and Stonestreet are one of the three couples featured in ABC's Wednesday night comedy Modern Family. On the show, the two men are in a committed relationship and raising their adopted daughter. Producers have hinted that the dads might get a second child in the show's third season.

Stonestreet, who last year won an Emmy Award for his portrayal of Cameron, is openly straight, while co-star Ferguson, who plays Mitchell, is openly gay.

During a recent cabler Bravo's Inside the Actor's Studio, Ferguson explained what he meant by “gay for pay.”

“He's straight in real life,” Ferguson told host John Lipton, “and they pay him an x amount of dollars to be gay. And wouldn't anybody?”

When Lipton asked, “Was there a time when you were closeted and then came out?” Ferguson, in a reference to this childhood, answered: “I was locking myself in my bedroom, you know playing the soundtrack of Les Miserables, so ...”

“I get it,” Lipton responded.