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Topher Grace on returning to comedy, and chemistry with the cast of ABC’s new show, ‘Home Economics’


Actor Topher Grace has logged some impressive big-screen credits since That ’70s Show, starring in films like Interstellar for director Christopher Nolan and Spike Lee‘s Oscar-winning drama BlacKkKlansman.  But tonight, he returns to small-screen comedy in ABC’s new show, Home Economics.

Grace plays Tom, the eldest sibling of the Hayworth family, who finds himself in a financial bind after his once-promising career as a novelist hits the skids.  Along with his wife, Marina, played by Karla Souza, and their kids, they head off to visit the palatial mansion of Tom’s rich investor younger brother, Connor — American Vandal’s Jimmy Teatro — with the hidden agenda of swallowing his pride and asking him for a loan.

Unbeknownst to Tom, however, their sister, Sarah, played by Caitlin McGee, and her wife, played by SNL alumna Sasheer Zamata, also pack up their kids for a visit with their hat in hand.

Making it even more awkward, Tom is secretly writing a book about the family’s dysfunctional dynamics.

Grace tells ABC Audio the Home Economics cast is key. “That kind of chemistry is just luck. I’ve been on dream teams and I’ve been on not dream teams, and…it’s acting sometimes you’ve got to fake it,” he says. “But sadly, you can’t actually fake it when it comes to no matter how good an actor you are.”

Unlike That ’70s Show, Home Economics isn’t filmed in front of a live audience, but it wasn’t as much of an adjustment for the actor. 

“I’ll always be very grateful to that, to do like seven, eight years, where if you tell a joke and it doesn’t work, there’s nothing like three hundred people not laughing,” Grace quips. “But then really, I’ve only done films in-between, so I got very used to not having that audience there.”  

Home Economics debuts tonight at 8:30 p.m. Eastern on ABC.

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