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We’re in full-fledged countdown-to-Emmys mode now.

Show producers are putting the finishing touches on the stage and red carpet for the Emmycast’s debut at the Nokia Theater. HBO’s small army of party mavens are busy recreating Rio de Janeiro at the Pacific Design Theater. (HBO’s bash will have a Brazilian theme, for no particular reason other than it’s Emmy60seatprep festivo.)

The TV aficionados in Variety‘s newsroom could not be more enthralled with the new season of "Mad Men," so you know who we’re rooting for on Sunday night — not that every nominee doesn’t deserve to win and it’s an honor to be nominated…sincerely. (And I’ve been very torn about it because "Lost" is also up for the big drama series prize, but as much as I dug "Lost" this past season, my gut tells me "Mad Men" deserves the gold this year.)

So watch this space starting at midday Sunday for dispatches from the red-carpet scene Nokia, and live blog color commentary on the main event starting at 5 p.m.

With any luck, the Emmycast will be so entertaining that at the end we’ll all rise up and shout: "It’s toasted!"

(Pictured above, from left, Emmycast producer Danette Herman, TV Acad chairman John Schaffner, Emmycast exec producer Ken Ehrlich, producer Ron Basile and helmer Louis Horvitz. Pictured below, from left, Emmy hosts Ryan Seacrest, Heidi Klum, Jeff Probst, Tom Bergeron and Howie Mandel)

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