<p>Sofia Vergara and Julie Bowen are among the &quot;Modern Family&quot;&nbsp;actors demanding a significant pay raise.</p>

Sofia Vergara and Julie Bowen are among the "Modern Family" actors demanding a significant pay raise.

Credit: ABC

'Modern Family' contract dispute leads to lawsuit, canceled table read

Can this be resolved before ABC comes to press tour on Friday?

Because the summer press tour takes place right around the time network shows are resuming production for the next season, there's been something of a tradition of contract disputes playing out right as the network in question is about to arrive at the tour. One of my first tours involved the cast of "Friends" uniting to negotiate a better deal, with every reporter too busy covering the salary impasse to pay any attention to the new shows NBC was trying to promote. In the mid-'00s, CBS fired "CSI" cast holdouts George Eads and Jorja Fox midway through the tour, eventually welcoming them back — at their previous salaries — after enough time had passed for them to learn their lessons.

These issues tend to crop up around hit shows — the cast of "Happy Endings," great as they are, don't have a ton of leverage — and this summer's dispute involves one of the biggest hits anywhere in television: "Modern Family."

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<p>NBC doesn't want this kind of &quot;Community&quot;&nbsp;weirdness from its new sitcoms.</p>

NBC doesn't want this kind of "Community" weirdness from its new sitcoms.

Credit: NBC

Press Tour 2012: NBC wants broader comedies than 'Community'

Will Matthew Perry and a monkey be less narrow? And whither 'Smash'?

Things have been dire at NBC for so long that network entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt could be forgiven for opening his press tour session by celebrating the network's third-place finish for the season in the adults 18-49 demographic. Even if it was boosted by the Super Bowl, it was still NBC's first finish above fourth place since the 2003-04 TV season.

The one good thing NBC has had going for it during this dark, dark period has been a collection of shows — particularly the comedies on Thursday — that have been praised early and often by the TV critics Greenblatt was addressing. Unfortunately, our love doesn't translate into ratings, and part of Greenblatt's plan to bring the network back from oblivion involves moving away from the strategy that gave us "30 Rock," "Parks and Recreation" and "Community."

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<p>Anthony Anderson and Tempestt Bledsoe in &quot;Guys with Kids.&quot;</p>

Anthony Anderson and Tempestt Bledsoe in "Guys with Kids."

Credit: NBC

A day in the life of press tour '12: NBC

Matthew Perry, Dick Wolf and Giancarlo Esposito come to meet the critics

Press tour keeps moving quickly, so after FOX wrapped things up last night, NBC moved in for two days: one devoted to the broadcast network, one to NBC Universal cable. Because the broadcast network is in such dire shape, they're launching a whole lot of new series this fall, which means there's no time on the schedule for any returning shows. So no quizzing the new "Community" showrunners, no getting a sense from Greg Daniels on what will become of "The Office," no Offerman-stache, etc. But lots and lots of panels.

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<p>&quot;Suburgatory&quot;&nbsp;will get the plum timeslot after &quot;Modern Family&quot;&nbsp;this fall.</p>

"Suburgatory" will get the plum timeslot after "Modern Family" this fall.

Credit: ABC

ABC to swap 'Suburgatory' and 'The Neighbors' timeslots

Post-'Modern Family' slot goes to rising sophomore sitcom

One of the more confounding scheduling decisions any network made during upfront season was ABC's scheduling of the new comedy "The Neighbors" on Wednesdays at 9:30. The timeslot after "Modern Family" is the best launching pad ABC can give a new sitcom —though the results have been mixed at best in the past for "Cougar Town," "Mr. Sunshine," "Happy Endings" and more — and it's hard to find anyone who doesn't work at ABC with many kind things to say about the pilot for "The Neighbors." Clips of the show — starring Lenny Venito and Jamie Gertz as parents who move their family into a gated community where all the neighbors are secretly aliens — bombed in front of advertisers at the network's fall schedule announcement, and early critical buzz has been rough, with many in the industry speculating on how many weeks ABC would leave the show in such a good slot before admitting defeat.

Instead, it appears ABC has accepted the inevitable and is going to put a different, better show after Phil, Claire and the gang. As first reported by Deadline, and confirmed to me by a source close to the show, ABC has decided to put "Suburgatory" on at 9:30 and try "The Neighbors" in the old "Suburgatory" slot at 8:30.

"Suburgatory" had a very strong debut season, and while it seemed a good match in the 8 o'clock hour with "The Middle," it feels like the best possible match with "Modern Family" of all the other comedies ABC currently has in its inventory. And if there's going to be an audience that likes "The Neighbors," it'll likely be little kids who think people who turn into squishy green aliens are cool — and those kids won't be watching at 9:30 p.m.

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<p>Mariah Carey will be an &quot;American Idol&quot;&nbsp;judge.</p>
<br />

Mariah Carey will be an "American Idol" judge.

Credit: AP

Press Tour 2012: FOX president Kevin Reilly welcomes Mariah Carey

Will this be the year that FOX finishes in second place?

FOX has been the top-rated network on television for the past 8 television seasons. But as network entertainment president Kevin Reilly faced the press assembled for the Television Critics Association summer press tour, he also acknowledged that this is a network in the midst of a transition — which could, depending on how big a boost top rival CBS gets from airing the Super Bowl next year, the end of that first place streak.

"I can tell you that at the very least, it's going to be close," Reilly said of the possibility of finishing second for the first time in almost a decade. "Whether we end up getting nudged out of the title, we'll see."

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<p>Ed Weeks, Mindy Kaling and Chris Messina in &quot;The Mindy Project.&quot;</p>

Ed Weeks, Mindy Kaling and Chris Messina in "The Mindy Project."

Credit: FOX

A day in the life of press tour '12: FOX

A 'Fringe' farewell, new 'X Factor' judges, Mindy Kaling and more

My stint at the Television Critics Association summer press tour begins today, though Fienberg has already been here for two days covering what sounds like a very interesting slate of PBS panels (particularly if you're a "Downton Abbey" fan).

If you've been reading me a long time, you know what press tour is. If you haven't, my press tour primer from the Ledger days still applies. I'll be tag-teaming with both Fienberg and Liane Bonin Starr to cover the bulk of the tour, so keep all three of our blogs bookmarked if you want to know about it all.

Though I won't be doing this every day, I like to do a quick run-through of the schedule for certain days to give you all a sense of what the tour is like, and of what things you may be reading about today and in days to come. PBS wrapped up tonight, and FOX arrives for a full day of panels and other events. Here's how their schedule looks (all times are Pacific):

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<p>Dev Patel in &quot;The Newsroom.&quot;</p>

Dev Patel in "The Newsroom."

Credit: HBO

Review: 'The Newsroom' - 'Amen'

Mackenzie can't do math, Neal finds a kindred spirit and many people get injured

A few quick thoughts on last night's "The Newsroom" coming up just as soon as I keep walking into a glass door...

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<p>Walt and Jesse make their pitch to Mike on &quot;Breaking Bad.&quot;</p>

Walt and Jesse make their pitch to Mike on "Breaking Bad."

Credit: AMC

Review: 'Breaking Bad' - 'Madrigal'

Hank's investigation has ripple effects on Mike and the rest of Gus's organization

A review of tonight's "Breaking Bad" coming up just as soon as I guard the special sauce...

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<p>Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Alison Brie and Yvette Nicole Brown from &quot;Community.&quot;</p>

Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Alison Brie and Yvette Nicole Brown from "Community."

Watch: 'Community' stars Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Alison Brie & Yvette Nicole Brown at Comic-Con, Part 2

How did they become the tightest-knit, silliest cast on television?

Time for part 2 of my Comic-Con chat with "Community" co-stars Joel Mchale, Gillian Jacobs, Alison Brie and Yvette Nicole Brown. Part 1 was the more serious end of things, as the actors talked about the show's continued survival, their feelings about Dan Harmon's exit, their relationship with the fans, etc.

In part 2, things get a bit sillier (albeit not to the furry level of last year's McHale/Brown/Rash extravaganza) as they discussed exactly how they came to be such a tightly-knit group — right before the cameras rolled, Jacobs and Brie were loudly dueting on Flight of the Conchords' "Jenny" "Debra" by Beck — whether the cast or the study group is emotionally closer and (for a surprisingly long period of time) what the heck is up with Chevy Chase's feet.

Enjoy. The new season of "Community" debuts Friday, October 19 at 8:30 p.m. on NBC. 

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<p>Alma and Sophia entertain a visitor on &quot;Deadwood.&quot;</p>

Alma and Sophia entertain a visitor on "Deadwood."

Credit: HBO

'Deadwood' Rewind: Season 2, Episode 8: 'Childish Things' (Veterans edition)

Alliances are forged, or rejected, in a female-centric hour

We're continuing our summer trip back through David Milch's epic revisionist Western "Deadwood." As always with this project, we're going to have two parallel discussions going at once: identical reviews, but one where the comments section is just for people who are new to the series and don't want to be spoiled on anything past the events of the episode being discussed, and one for people who know "Deadwood" backwards and forwards, and want to be able to discuss it all at once. This is the veteran-friendly version; click here for the newbie-safe one.

After taking some time off from the project due to Comic-Con, I've got a review of episode 8, "Childish Things," coming up just as soon as I both reject and repudiate the offering...

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