You never know who (Brad Pitt) will be at CinemaCon

You never know who you’ll run into at CinemaCon.


Last year during the annual gathering of movie theater owners, I was rushing to a presentation in the Colosseum when I came thisclose to barrelling into “The Hunger Games’ ” Elizabeth Banks. Yeah, I’m a clumsy oaf. But in my defense, who stops short in the middle of a crowded hallway to change shoes?


This year’s festivities, set for Monday through Thursday at Caesars Palace, will feature appearances by the likes of Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Adam Sandler, Seth Rogen, Cameron Diaz, Kevin Costner, Drew Barrymore, Jon Hamm and “Divergent’s” Shailene Woodley.

They’ll be there to woo theater owners into supporting their upcoming movies, and several will pick up some rather dubious sounding awards in the process.

Hamm is a terrific actor and a fine human being. But presenting him with something called The Award of Excellence in Acting sounds like the sort of thing “30 Rock’s” Liz Lemon would have made up to placate Tracy and/or Jenna.

Those are just the announced guests. Last year, Brad Pitt surprised attendees to promote “World War Z,” and I swear I heard a woman a few rows over start to ovulate.

Then there was the fan screening of “The Lone Ranger” footage that ended with Johnny Depp wandering around Town Square.

None of the events is open to the public, but if you happen to be at Caesars this week, keep your eyes peeled.

You never know who you’ll run into.

“Family” vacation: The extended Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker clan heads to the Strip for this week’s episode of “Modern Family” (9 p.m. Wednesday, KTNV-TV, Channel 13). Among the storylines, Claire sneaks off to gamble, Phil tries to infiltrate a secret magic society, and Cam lives it up at a bachelor party. Fred Armisen, Stephen Merchant and Patton Oswalt guest star.

Giving back: Ron White’s fourth annual “Comedy Salute to the Troops” (9 p.m. Sunday, CMT) was taped at The Mirage and, in addition to a set by White, includes performances by Kathleen Madigan, Josh Blue, Roy Wood Jr., Gabriel Iglesias and Vegas’ own Geechy Guy. The special’s goal is to raise funds for the Armed Forces Foundation and create awareness for post-traumatic stress disorder.

On sale: “Tanked: The Official Companion,” by the show’s stars, Las Vegans Wayde King and Brett Raymer, will be released Tuesday.

Contact Christopher Lawrence at clawrence@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-4567.