'Ben and Kate' creator Dana Fox on the magnetic real-life Ben Fox
Fox tells reporters at the 2012 summer Television Critics Association press tour that her older brother was always a Ferris Bueller-type person throughout her life -- the kind of guy who always finds the party and always finds new adventures. You couldn't have ever guessed that he would grow up to become such a great dad.
"In a million years if you had met my brother when he was younger you never would've believed he could've kept two kids alive," Fox says, let alone become what she calls "the world's greatest father."
In creating the show, she tried to embrace her brother's spirit. TV Ben is a version of her brother before he grew up a little and had his own kids. He's the perfect subject for a sitcom because she has more than enough real-life stories to draw from -- certainly 100 episodes worth.
"When he was really, really little he did a lot of stuff that really challenged my parents," Fox says, mentioning the time where her parents came home from work and the whole house "smelled like a dead animal" because he'd put his down pillow in the microwave to heat it up when he was cold.
So, how has Ben reacted to the fact that America is about to meet the fictionalized version of himself? "He doesn't seem surprised that he has a TV show," says executive producer Jake Kasdan.
Fox says her brother has fully embraced the fact that this character so closely resembles him. "He is so happy that the world finally revolves around him in the way he is accustomed."
"Ben and Kate" premieres Tuesday, September 25 at 8:30 p.m. on FOX.