EXCLUSIVE: AfterEllen visits the set of “The Fosters”

We’ve been hearing (and waiting) for The Fosters for a long time and ABC Family finally delivers when the one-hour drama premieres tonight.

In the series, created by Peter Paige and Bradley Bredweg and Executive Produced by Jennifer Lopez, we meet police officer Stef Foster (Teri Polo) and her partner, school principal Lena Adams (Sherri Saum) who are in a committed relationship and trying to keep life in a balance as they raise a houseful of teenaged kids. Eldest son Brandon (David Lambert) is the biological son of Stef’s with her ex, Mike (Danny Nucci), who still wants to be a part of the picture. Twin adoptees Jesus (Jake T. Austin) and Mariana (Cierra Ramirez) have been a part of the family for awhile but are curious about their biological Mom. And new addition Callie (Maia Mitchell) has had her share of bad experiences in foster homes and juvenile detention and comes to Stef and Lena’s home where she’ll not only stir up the tensions between the kids but also between the two Moms.

AfterEllen.com was on The Fosters set last week and sat down with Saum and the young actors playing her on-screen kids to talk about the controversy of the show, the differences between Saum and Polo (who we’ll be talking to in the coming weeks) and what this series says about what a family is in 2013. (You can also check out the chat with Paige and Bredeweg over at TheBacklot.)

Sherri Saum talks about her “crazy” on-screen lover, Teri Polo.

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Cierra Ramirez talks about her role in the new series.

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Maia Mitchell talks about the drama and romance coming on the show.

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Peter Paige and Bradley Bredweg discuss their inspiration for the series.

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Jake T. Austin discusses whether The Fosters is truly controversial.

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David Lambert talks working with Saum and Polo.

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The Fosters airs Mondays at 9 p.m. on ABC Family.