'Modern Family' Pays for NYC Wedding Ceremonies in the Best Publicity Stunt Ever

If you can't afford to get married, then today is your lucky day. ABC is hosting the most heartwarming promotional stunt for the upcoming season finale of Modern Family, a stunt so heartwarming it doesn't deserve to be called a simple stunt. The two-part finale of Modern Family beginning on Wednesday is going to feature the wedding of Cameron Tucker and Mitchell Pritchett. How would you promote a fictional wedding? No matter what you might have said, ABC paying for everyone's marriage licenses was probably not high on that list.

The details were announced on Good Morning America on Monday. Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Eric Stonestreet, who play Mitchell and Cam respectively, stopped by to tease the upcoming ceremony and discuss their character arcs. "It's a rare opportunity you get as actors," said Stonestreet. "You never think of that when you're out there auditioning for different parts in TV shows and not getting them, and then to finally get a gig like this that is really, truly -- not to put too much importance on it, but owning it a little bit -- having social impact, cultural impact. We hear it from kids, we hear that from parents, so we know it's real."

ABC also announced that Modern Family will be covering the cost of all marriage licenses and wedding ceremonies taking place on Monday, May 12 at the New York City Clerk's office between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3:45 p.m. The office is located at 141 Worth Street, New York, NY 10013. If that doesn't say "social and cultural impact", then what does?

Of course, the network had to be smart about it. The promotional stunt didn't receive any advance press, preventing people from out of state from driving down to have their elaborate weddings paid for, and the promotion ends before the day is even through, which eliminates any evening or night weddings. If that seems unfair, just think about how much more unfair it would be to drive all the way to the clerk's office only to find out that ABC ran out of room in their budget and can't deliver what they promised.

There's no word yet on how many free weddings people received today, but ABC and Modern Family have really gone above and beyond to hit their fans right in the heart. Publicity stunt or no publicity stunt, it takes a special kind of show to promote a fictional wedding by making real life dream weddings come true.

Watch a sneak peek from the upcoming episode below.

Image: ABC