Ty Burrell, Julie Bowen, Ariel Winter, Nolan Gould, Sarah Hyland, Modern Family

Eric McCandless/ABC

While reading all the updates about Modern Family's ugly money battle and delayed production, the last emotion that came to mind was "optimistic."

But that was the word ABC boss Paul Lee dropped again and again while talking about the dispute to reporters during the executive panel session at today's ABC TCA presentation.

"I expect the season to start on time," he said. "As you know, we're in the middle negotiations at the moment. And we're hopeful and we're optimistic we're going to resolve it."

When asked about the table read that was supposed to happen on Thursday morning, Lee confirmed that the cast did indeed show up.

"We did the table read," he insisted. "We are in the middle of negotiations. We're optimistic. I don't want to talk about the specifics of the negotiations but it's a wonderful show it's a great cast and we're optimistic about it."

A reporter then brought up the possibility of having a contingency plan should the lawsuit and salary dispute take a long and ugly turn for the worst, but once again, Lee promised ABC was feeling confident about the situation.

"I don't want to discuss hypotheticals," he said. "Certainly we are optimistic but we are negotiating right now and we'll come back to you when we have more."

Kids, the word of the day is—say it with us: "optimistic."

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