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On the heals of yesterday's news about Aaron Sorkin's new show, we find out that Lowe, Parker among those back reprising their roles on 'West Wing'

A sizable group of former "West Wing" regulars and recurring players, headed by Rob Lowe and Mary-Louise Parker, will return to the show for its final episodes.

Lowe, who left the show toward the end of the 2002-03 season, will reprise his role as Sam Seaborn, the former White House aide last seen running for a congressional seat in California. NBC says he's now a "senior political official" and that the outcome of the election between Democrat Matt Santos (Jimmy Smits) and Republican Arnold Vinick (Alan Alda) will have been decided before Lowe's appearance.

Parker, currently starring in Showtime's "Weeds," will return as lobbyist Amy Gardner, the one-time love interest of Bradley Whitford's Josh Lyman. The others expected back are Anna Deavere Smith as White House advisor Nancy McNally; Emily Procter ("CSI: Miami") as lawyer Ainsley Hayes; Timothy Busfield -- who guested earlier this season as well -- as reporter Danny Concannon; Gary Cole as Vice President Bob Russell; Tim Matheson as former Veep John Hoynes; Marlee Matlin as pollster Joey Lucas; and Annabeth Gish, who's also been around this season, as Elizabeth Westin, President Bartlet's (Martin Sheen) eldest daughter.

NBC isn't saying when all the characters will appear, and it doesn't promise that all of them will be around for the series finale on May 14. "The West Wing," which has won 25 Emmys in its lifetime (including one for special class program for its 2002 "Documentary Special"), returns Sunday, March 12 for 10 episodes leading up to the finale.

The Vinick-Santos election episodes are scheduled for April 2 and 9, producer John Wells has said, with the finale taking place on the day the new president is inaugurated and Bartlet leaves office.

However, no Aaron Sorkin or Tommie Schalame. =(