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'The Super Bowl of Television': PaleyFest 2014 begins

The Paley Center for Media celebrates TV with Paley Fest 2014.
The Paley Center for Media celebrates TV with Paley Fest 2014.
Paley Center for Media.

Get ready TV fans - PaleyFest 2014 opens tonight.

If you’re a TV devotee and you’re not sure what PaleyFest is, I must ask you this -- what’s wrong with you?! How can you call yourself a true television fan if you're not familiar with the biggest and best celebration of all things TV?

Here's the scoop.

PaleyFest, now in its 31st year, is an annual two week event that takes place in Los Angeles connecting fans with the creators and casts of their favorite series.

Each event features a screening of either highlights of the show or an episode (sometimes a previously un-aired episode!) followed by a panel discussion and concludes with an audience question and answer session.

According to Maureen Reidy, Chief Marketing Officer for The Paley Center, “Paley Fest is the 'Super Bowl' of the television industry. It’s the best of TV not on TV,” says Reidy. “You get the full cast, the creators, the writers, the directors and the showrunners for these series who talk openly about the creative process, things that happen on set, and those behind-the-scenes moments that everyone wants to hear about.”

The line-up features buzzed about current shows as well as classic series, all of which are overwhelmingly welcomed by fans.

“While fans love events about shows that on the air right now, the reunions for the classic shows are tremendously popular,” explains Reidy. “Last year we did an event with everyone from the show 'China Beach.' That event sold out in about six minutes, and the numbers of the livestream were huge.”

This year, the ABC mythical drama “Lost” is on the agenda as it’s celebrating the tenth anniversary of its television debut.

“For the ‘Lost’ reunion we actually had someone from Singapore reach out to us to make sure he could get a ticket because he was planned on flying in for the event,” reveals Reidy.

She goes on to say that it’s not just the fans who love the events. “A lot of times when you see the cast of a show at an event, they stop, take a few pictures, shake a few hands and leave. When these actors come to our events they really feel at home, they totally get into it. They love the fans at our events and many of them have said that at the Paley events they really feel like they get to spend time with the fans in a way that they can’t at any other time. And, it's not uncommon for an event will be over and the cast members just don’t want to leave because they’re having so much fun. This happens all of the time at our events.”

The live events offer the casts, writers and producers a chance to interact with the fans in a way that no other event does, explains Reidy, “There’s an energy and excitement right from the start. Everyone, those on stage and those in the audience, is there to have fun and be engaged and that’s exactly what happens. There’s always a lot of laughter and everyone really enjoys themselves.”

Reidy says that while the cast of each show loves to make their presentation to the crowd during the panel discussion, the part they really love is the question and answer portion of the evening. “The audience is always very knowledgeable and they ask very thoughtful questions.”

There are still tickets left for some events (see the full list below), but if an event is sold out or you just can’t make it to Los Angeles for the Fest, don't worry that you'll miss out because each event will be live streamed with the service being provided by Verizon Digital Media.

For more information about Paley Fest, and to livestream the events, please visit the Paley Center for Media here.

The official PaleyFest line-up is:

Thursday, March 13: Veronica Mars Reunion (7:00 pm)
Friday, March 14: Orange Is the New Black (7:00 pm)
Saturday, March 15: How I Met Your Mother Farewell(7:00 pm)
Sunday, March 16: Pretty Little Liars (1:00 pm Matinee Presentation)
Sunday, March 16: Lost: 10th Anniversary Reunion (7:00 pm)
Tuesday, March 18: Parks and Recreation (7:00 pm)
Wednesday, March 19: Sleepy Hollow (7:00 pm)
Friday, March 21: Mad Men (7:00 pm)
Saturday, March 22: The Vampire Diaries & The Originals (7:00 pm)
Sunday, March 23: Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (1:00 pm Matinee Presentation)
Monday, March 24: Masters of Sex (7:00 pm)
Tuesday, March 25: The Mindy Project (7:00 pm)
Wednesday, March 26: Community (7:00 pm)
Thursday, March 27: Veep (7:00 pm)
Friday, March 28: American Horror Story: Coven (7:00 pm)

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