Emmy Party Diaries: Inside Friday's Events with Bryan Cranston, Conan O'Brien and Amy Poehler

THR was inside the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences' Performers Nominees Reception and the WME party, offering updates of all the star sightings ahead of TV's biggest night.

Emmy Weekend kicked off Friday at Spectra at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood for the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences' Performers Nominee Reception. More than 25 nominees, including Breaking Bad's Bryan Cranston, Modern Family's Eric Stonestreet and American Horror Story's Connie Britton gathered to pick up their official Emmy certificate. From there, stars and execs stepped out at a well-attended WME bash at nearby Milk, where brass from NBC, Showtime and FX, among other nets, chatted up such stars as Conan O'Brien, Chris Matthews and Ginnifer Goodwin.

The Hollywood Reporter was on site to catch the highlights as they happened.

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Performers Nominee Reception:

8:32 p.m. Cranston, who directed an episode of ABC's Modern Family last season, sits down with Stonestreet's parents, for whom he doled out big hugs. Minutes later, they're joined by Stonestreet's co-star Ty Burrell.
8:45 p.m. Burrell and newly engaged Jesse Tyler Ferguson chat with Lily Tomlin by the entrance. Nearby, Stonestreet tells a gaggle that he hasn't prepared --and for that matter, won't prepare-- an acceptance speech. 
8:46 p.m. The Big Bang Theory's Mayim Bialik, clad in a mauve dress that matches the brace/bandage on her injured hand says co-star and fellow nominee Jim Parsons will "stand up and scream at the top of his lungs" if she wins. The show's Kunal Nayyar, she notes, has been adamant that this is the year that the CBS comedy wins in the series category, which would cap off a year in which Big Bang has beaten reality juggernaut American Idol in the demo and achieved huge success in syndication on TBS.
9 p.m. Former Brady Bunch star Florence Henderson stops for a drink and mingles near the bar as the nominees begin to gather for their certificates. Among the latter: Britton, Giancarlo Esposito, Damian Lewis and Julie Bowen, among others. 

9:01 p.m. New Girl's Zooey Deschanel and Glee's Dot Marie Jones meet for the first time. Says the musically inclined Deschanel: "I love your show!" 
9:06 p.m. Justified winner Jeremy Davies reunites with former Spanking the Monkey co-star Carla Gallo as he awaits to hear his name called. Davies is sporting a messy pseudo Mohawk.
9:09 p.m. Cranston garners some of the evening's biggest applause as he graces the stage to accept his certificate. There, Britton and a newly blonde Elisabeth Moss catch up and pose for pictures together from stage. 

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9:16 p.m. Homeland's Damian Lewis gives a big cheer to Downton Abbey star Michelle Dockery shortly after her name is called. He then laughs with Moss from stage. Not long after, Giancarlo Esposito collects his certificate and shouts,"I'm so happy, thank you!" from the stage. He then makes his way over to Cranston and the duo bear hug.
9:20 p.m. Julia Ormond nearly misses her cue and jogs to the stage in very high heels. Then comes Amy Poehler, who takes over the microphone and fakes an acceptance speech, generating wides laughs from the entire patio. After crafting a beauty pageant style announcement from stage at last year's Emmys, word is Poehler has nothing up her sleeve for Sunday. At least that's what she's telling people.
9:30 p.m. Shortly after the ceremony ends, Dallas star Brenda Strong says she wants Parenthood's Jason Ritter to come to pay a visit to the TNT drama. "Can you shoot a gun?" she asks.


10:32: Conan O'Brien spotted saying hello to Mandy Moore. He leaves shortly thereafter.

11:05: A&E Networks execs Abby Raven and newly promoted Nancy Dubuc, who is also nominated as an EP on miniseries Hatfield & McCoys greet well-wishers by the bar. The duo is joined by Lifetime's Rob Sharenow.

11:10: The League's Nick Kroll and FX's Nick Grad talk comedy by the bar. Nearby, Homeland showrunner Alex Gansa and EP/writer Meredith Stiehm chat over Fatburgers.

11:25: NBC's Bob Greenblatt mingles with a group that includes Glee and New Normal producer Dante Di Loreto. Jennifer Salke, Ted Harbert and Bela Bejaria are also making the rounds.

11:49: Showtime's David Nevins greets party-goers with Homeland writer-producer Chip Johannessen by the enterance. If he's nervous about Homeland's chances on Sunday evening, he isn't letting on. Inside, FX's John Landgraf, Fox's Peter Rice and stars including Kim Raver and Ginnifer Goodwin say their hellos.