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The Television Critics Association Press Tour is going to be crawling with TVWeek staffers. Check this space for observations from the presentations, hallway chatter and the dope on who was misbehaving at the parties. TVWeek’s Jon Lafayette, Josef Adalian, Andrew Krukowski, Sergio Ibarra and Vlada Gelman all will post as they scour the scene for news.


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ABC Parties at the Hilton

July 18, 2008 3:49 PM

Disney-ABC Summer Press Tour All-Star Party

FAMILY FUN: Anne Sweeney, left, co-chair of Disney Media Networks and president of Disney-ABC Television Group, smiles with "Desperate Housewives" co-star Teri Hatcher at Disney-ABC TV Group's Summer Press Tour All-Star Party.

ABC kept its All Star party close to home Thursday at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, where the TCA summer press tour is taking place. Perhaps they thought it was best not to drag weary critics to a faraway location on a day when they had to cover the Emmy nominations at 5:45 a.m.

How to further lull critics into a sleepy haze? With plenty of free food that could easily send one into a food coma. With multiple dessert tables featuring mini-tarts, platters of deli meats, pasta, potatoes, chicken and roast beef, and at least one open bar in every room, it’s easy to fall under the spell.

There were no “Pushing Daisies” pies in sight. A missed opportunity for some creatively themed food, if you ask us. However, the bar did offer a “Pushing Daisies” drink that the menu promised would make you think of apple pie if you closed your eyes. There also was a Life on Mars-tini. Hey, maybe Sam Tyler just had one too many drinks and hit his head!

Aside from the show-themed drinks and small banners for ABC, ABC Family and Disney Channel above the food tables, it was hard to tell that it was an ABC party. Screens featuring a slideshow of pictures from the networks’ shows were obscured by throngs of people. Thankfully, there were stars from “Desperate Housewives,” “Private Practice,” “Scrubs” “Eli Stone” and “Dirty Sexy Money,” in addition to network brass and executive producers, present as reminders.

“Eli Stone” co-creator Marc Guggenheim revealed that the show had to swap its filming order for the first two episodes to accommodate Broadway-bound Katie Holmes’ schedule. Her episode was filmed first, but will air second.

Guggenheim also said that Victor Garber would be doing some more singing and that while they’re hoping to bring George Michael back for an episode, they’re looking to bring in more ’80s music icons. Katey Sagal, who stars in FX’s upcoming series “Sons of Anarchy,” also will be back for some episodes, as will Tom Amandes, an alumnus of co-creator Greg Berlanti’s “Everwood.”

Too bad most of the cast and the other partygoers didn’t take a cue from “Eli’s” dancing and singing visions and head to the dance floor, which remained mostly empty save for some blink-and-you’ll-miss-it swaying from “Eli Stone’s” Julie Gonzalo while in the midst of a conversation.

Maybe they just needed some encouragement from the “Dancing With the Stars” pros.

—Vlada Gelman

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