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July 26, 2009

Few attend 'Mom-a-Con'; Heaton told not to show

Themiddle Comic-Con TV sessions are often so packed that dozens, hundreds or even thousands get turned away at the door.

But an attempt to expand the genre-driven conference to promote a new family sitcom didn't work out Friday, when ABC's new Patricia Heaton comedy "The Middle" drew scant attendees.

Sources say about 75 showed up to a screening in a 2000-seat Hilton ballroom, an event promoted as the "Mom-a-Con." Star Patricia Heaton was supposed to introduce the panel, but Warner Bros. told her not to bother due to the size of the crowd.

Studio Warner Bros. brought the largest number of programs to Comic-Con, 11, and regarded the screening as an experiment at a conference that increasingly seems to welcome off-brand programming. Last year the studio brought sitcom "Big Bang Theory" and it was a huge success, with the show returning this year. A Warner Bros. spokesperson emphasized that Heaton was planning to attend the convention with her family anyway and that expectations were always modest for a screening held at an off-site venue that had otherwise not been used all day.

The Live Feed's 2009 Comic-Con Archive! Top news, new trailers and fun stuff from San Diego


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