Who Will (and Won't) Be at the Upfront

What Everyone Is Talking About Today

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Now playing: upfront week. Already the TV community is buzzing about who will be at the upfront table (a post-pregnancy Tina Fey, post-"Friends" Matthew Perry) and who won't (Johnson & Johnson and, quite possibly, Coca-Cola).
Tina Fey, post-pregnancy, will be at 30 Rock tonight.
Tina Fey, post-pregnancy, will be at 30 Rock tonight. Credit: AP

Even the most jaded media buyers line up to snap photos with the stars of the Big Four. Tonight's NBC party will feature Ms. Fey and Mr. Perry, the latter starring in Aaron Sorkin's new "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" along with Bradley Whitford, Amanda Peet and D.L. Hughley. "Crash" director Paul Haggis, who's behind "The Black Donnellys," will be there, as will the casts of "My Name is Earl" and "The Office" and Jeff Goldblum of the new drama "Raines."

Expect the cast of ABC's returning hits to be posing for photos under the tents at Lincoln Center. Stars from "Desperate Housewives" and "Lost" will show up, and the "Grey's Anatomy" cast will be on-hand, fresh from their season finale, which airs tonight.

The biggest wild card is CBS, whose CEO, Les Moonves, swears the staff to secrecy with the vehemence of a high-school BFF cult. Mr. Moonves is known for making last-minute scheduling decisions to counter NBC's and ABC's schedules and, as of Monday, there were no sure bets. "The Class" with Jason Ritter looks promising, and Tom Cavanaugh fans bummed about the abrupt departure of "Love Monkey" might get another dose of the actor if "My Ex Life" is picked up.

Fox is rolling out its network big guns -- people identifiable by first name only: Kiefer, Paula, Simon and Randy. Hugh Laurie and Omar Epps will be on hand from "House," and Wentworth Miller, who plays younger brother Michael on "Prison Break," will show up. Also expect actors from some of its new shows -- Victor Gerber of "American Crime," Ron Livingston of "Primary" and Brad Garrett and Joely Fischer from "'Til Death."

It's just too bad Mother Nature isn't putting her best foot forward. She's greeted the upfront's arrival with a gray, gloomy day -- hardly the ideal forecast for a party. NBC, which is banking on its new slate to reverse its own dismal performance, hopes the weather is less of a precursor of the year to come and more of just a nuisance to its party at the garden at 30 Rock.
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