Pacing Yourself Through Parties and Prawns

Useful tips on getting around in a grueling upfront week
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Here are some tips for upfront week from  Billie Gold of Carat and Gary Carr of TargetCast,
two agency executives who have  been
going to network presentations for  longer
than they care to remember.

Gold advises:

  • Bring a camera, especially if you're starstruck. Half the
    time, the professional photographers say they are happy to snap your picture.
    But when you comply and search their Website the next day, your photo is always,
    mysteriously, the only one missing.
  • Feel free to make dinner plans for Tuesday night following
    ABC's upfront. The network is not throwing a party (except for VIPs) following
    the event-two thumbs down. Oh...and the only highlight of ABC's often drab
    upfront the past few years has been Jimmy Kimmel. Look out for him!
  • Given their low ratings, the Peacock folks need as many
    friends as they can get, but they too are not throwing a party. Bah humbug.
    They did, however, move the event back to Radio
    City Music Hall,
    which is always nice.
  • You'll want to bring either a tape measure or a small
    scale to size up the shrimp. Usual champ Fox should once again reign supreme,
    with NBC and ABC out of the shellfish picture.
  • Fox also usually throws the most fun party of the upfront,
    with a band, dancing and craziness, provided you dare to stay past 8 p.m. when most of the older folks go home to their
    families. CBS' party is the most star-filled and elegant. A class act.

Carr is wondering how many new shows anyone will remember by
week's end, how many more voice and dance competitions there will be, how many
times the words "social" and "digital" will be uttered, and how many networks will
be using Flo Rida's "Good Feeling" as part of its soundtrack.

He is also keeping an eye out for the size of the shrimp at the
post-presentation parties. And he plans to keep his eyes peeled for trendy new
cuisines amid the cocktails.

Carr suggests that you don't bring anything that has to be
checked, to reserve your car ride home early in the day and to "remember to
conserve your energy. It's a long week."

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