In November, ATX Television Festival - the TV fest in Austin celebrating its fourth year June 4-7 - announced that they'd be hosting a Gilmore Girls reunion with creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and stars Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel. And though it feels like that news can't get any better, IT HAS.
First, the Gilmore Girls reunion has now expanded to include Kelly Bishop (the senior Gilmore Girl), Scott Patterson (Luke), Sean Gunn (Kirk), Jared Padalecki (Dean), Keiko Agena (Lane), Liza Weil (Paris), Liz Torres (Miss Patty), Yanic Truesdale (Michel) and John Cabrera (Brian). This is major!
And there is so much more exciting programming beyond that. Bryan Fuller is attending in support of Hannibal, and Rob Thomas is there with iZombie; Greg Berlanti's there for Dawson's Creek, and along with Sherman-Palladino, that is an incredible list of television creators responsible for some of my favorite TV ever.
Yeah, Dawson's Creek: Kevin Williamson is hosting a writers' room reunion including Berlanti, Thomas, Liz Tigelaar, Anna Fricke, Julie Plec and more, because Dawson's Creek generated an astonishing collection of successful writing careers. There will also be a live reading of the classic pilot episode of Dawson's Creek with a "special guest cast." I'm not going to even begin guessing who those special guests could be, because I will get myself too excited.
ALSO: with Amy Sherman-Palladino and Kelly Bishop both attending, it would be an enormous waste not to feature ABC Family's late, lamented Bunheads, and ATX isn't much for waste. Stars Sutton Foster (OMG) and Stacey Oristano will join Bishop and Sherman-Palladino for a "Cancelled Too Soon" screening of that wonderful show.
Legendary producer James L. Brooks will receive the Achievement in Television Excellence Award, and Al Jean, Matt Selman and David Silverman are joining him for a panel on the "unique 27-year history and evolution" of The Simpsons.
There's actually so, so much more: Justified and Queer as Folk and Drunk History and Marta Kauffman and House of Cards and Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Boy Meets Girl and even more, so check out the constantly updated ATX Television Festival website and follow them on Twitter for more announcements. (I can't believe I'm saying this, but there will be more.)
This is a festival run by two people - Caitlin McFarland and Emily Gipson - who just really, really love television. They've turned something little into something big, and it's been exciting to be there for it. And it's not too late for you to be there, too: get your badge here.