Even when they’re not clad in their eighties garb, the cast members of ABC’s hit comedy “The Goldbergs” still act like a family both on and off camera.
Stars Wendi McLendon-Covey, Jeff Garlin, George Segal, Troy Gentile and Hayley Orrantia joined creator Adam F. Goldberg and his fellow exec producer Doug Robinson Monday evening at the Paley Center in Beverly Hills and kept the audience laughing as they poked fun at each other and discussed everything from the casting process to Garlin walking around the set sans pants.
Of course, one of the biggest questions on fans’ minds was whether the show will be picked up for a second season. While McLendon-Covey remained tight-lipped on the red carpet, telling Variety that she could only say “It’s looking good,” it was Goldberg who spilled the beans later in the evening and accidentally revealed that the show will return for season two, though he insisted, “It’s not official!”
After treating the audience to an episode of “The Goldbergs” that will air May 6, Goldberg talked about what it was like to create a TV show based on his own childhood and the thousands of hours of home videos he recorded.
“People assume I exaggerate,” Goldberg said. “I actually pull back a lot.”
Goldberg and Robinson also shared that they knew McLendon-Covey was perfect for the role of Goldberg’s overbearing mother Beverly, but they weren’t the only ones trying to get her after her turn on “Rules of Engagement.”
“Pilot season had just started and everyone wanted Wendi, so it felt like a bakeoff,” Robinson explained. “Luckily I had the video to show her and the script and we just met with her and that was it.”
McLendon-Covey added, “Within maybe a minute and thirty seconds I was ready to do it.”
Garlin said the script drew him to this project, and he was ready to commit as long as he could continue to appear on HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” though Segal interjected, “You’re better on this than you are on ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ – just to let you know if it comes to a choice.”
Though this wasn’t her first time playing a mom, McLendon-Covey admitted she was nervous when the real Beverly Goldberg visited the set.
“I didn’t get to talk to the actual Beverly until about two or three months in,” she said. “She was perfectly sweet, but she is so proud to be Adam’s mother.”
Goldberg’s mother also contributed to McLendon-Covey’s wardrobe for the show by sending boxes of “her own personal gems,” though Goldberg reminded the actress that she’ll want them back eventually.
Garlin, who was far less concerned with his own wardrobe, joked about walking around the set in his slippers and underwear and teased, “I’m almost like a PG version of Lena Dunham.”
The laughs kept coming as Garlin and Segal, who plays Goldberg’s grandfather, bantered back and forth until Segal called out his co-star for stealing the spotlight.
“Well, like everything else, you’ve just eaten up my segment,” Segal deadpanned.
All joking aside, the adult cast members had nothing but praise for their younger co-stars.
Though Orrantia said she got into acting to build a platform in hopes of being able to secure a record deal, McLendon-Covey said her onscreen daughter is a natural.
“If I can brag as not really her mother, this girl is so funny and naturally witty. They don’t make ‘em any better,” McLendon-Covey said. “I know when I have a day of shooting with Hayley it’s going to be effortless. It’s going to be perfection.”
Garlin also cited Gentile’s impressive work ethic and called Sean Giambrone, who plays a young Goldberg on the show, “the nicest person that I have ever met.”
Goldberg then closed out the night by telling the story of how his mom ended up spending the night in his dorm room when she came to visit during his first weekend away at college, proving that he’s unlikely to run out of source material for the show anytime soon.
“The Goldbergs” airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on ABC.
(Pictured: George Segal, Troy Gentile, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Hayley Orrantia and Jeff Garlin attend The Paley Center For Media’s “The Goldbergs: Your TV Trip To The 1980′”s at The Paley Center for Media)