NBC Photo: Mitchell Haaseth
NBC Photo: Mitchell Haaseth
Now hear this: The Office is not over yet! The long-running comedy's cast and crew came out in force last night to the NBC Universal's winter bash in Pasadena, Calif., to underline the point that despite Steve Carell's upcoming exit, the show will go on, and there are plenty of characters and storylines in which we fans can and should remain invested.
We spoke exclusively to stars John Krasinski and Jenna Fischer, plus head writer Daniel Chun. Find out what they revealed about who's about to get wasted at work, which fan-fave couple are probably not soulmates, who's got a little jealousy storyline in the V-Day ep, and oh yeah, whether Michael Scott's departure from the Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin paper will be in victory or in infamy:
By popular request, here's what executive producer Daniel Chun can reveal about how they're playing off Michael Scott: "I'm not going to say if it's going to be happy [ending] or not, but I'll say: It will be deserved. He will earn the ending he gets. I think here are multiple plausible endings for him. He could get fired, he could get promoted, he could decide to quit it all and go to Hollywood. He could find love or he could crash and burn romantically. He's poised for a number of things but the thing that's a promise is that he will deserve what he gets."
We also wondered if Scott would just blip out of the series in a climatic surprise ending or if we might get more of a valedictory arc for him, where he finds a moment or two to reflect on his story, the way he did when Holly Flax (Amy Ryan) moved at the end of season five? Chun tells us, "There will be an arc. We're telling the story of a man who's been working his whole life for a business, at one place, and that story is coming to an end, so we'll be telling the whole story...Ultimately we always try to do what feels real, and the finale we have planned feels real. We didn't say, 'This is what we want to be at the end, so let figure out a way to make it work.' We've been thinking, 'What would happen? What do you think would happen?' and then it's like what's funny about it and build upon that."
As for other storylines this season, here's what's to come with some of our favorite Office showmances:
PAM & JIM: There's a big upcoming V-Day episode that features Pam and Jim (John Krasinski) getting wasted and staying wasted throughout the day at work. As Jenna Fischer tells us, "In the Valentine's Day episode, Jim and Pam go to brunch because they couldn't afford or couldn't get a babysitter for Valentine's Day dinner, and so they go to lunch and they drink a little too much at lunch and they have to then be at the office drunk but not let anyone know. That's going to be really fun."
DWIGHT & ANGELA: Dwight (Rainn Wilson) and Angela's (Angela Kinsey) romance has been entangled in contractual red tape for a while now, but a new complication is coming for them. Chun tells us, "The interesting dynamic that we're pursuing is what is she's with this Senator (Jack Coleman) who's gay—Dwight doesn't really know about that yet...We have an upcoming episode where Dwight is a little bit offended slash hurt—although he'll never say he's hurt—that Angela found someone else. So there's kind of like a guys' day out, where Darryl (Craig Robinson), Andy (Ed Helms) and Dwight play hooky. They decide we are going to go out and find some hotties, and there's the excitement of guys as they are about to go out, they're like 'Oh my god what happens if you meet a girl at the bar? Should we just leave you there?'And then the reality."
ANDY, ERIN & GABE: As for the show's current office-romance love triangle, the one between Andy, Erin (Ellie Kemper) and Gabe Lewis (Zach Woods), Chun reveals, "We were working on an episode today that involves that triangle. It's the Valentine's episode, and the episode's mainly about PDA in the office. Thing is that Andy and Erin are not Jim and Pam—they're goofier. Maybe a question to explore for Andy and Erin is, yes, we want love for them, but are they genuinely right for each other? It's not like Jim and Pam where they were so right for each other. It's not like she's the perfect lock in his key or whatever. So we're exploring that stuff also but everyone wants Andy to be happy, we're not cruel, we're not going to torture him but..."
Uh-oh! What kind of ending do you think Michael Scott deserves? What kind of woman would be the perfect lock for Andy's key? (Ewww!)
TWITTER: Follow @JenniferArrow for more TV scoop from the winter press tour.