The Office: 15 Behind-The-Scenes Facts And Revelations

“I just don't know how I'll live with myself if they screw this show up and ruin it for me.”
The Office: 15 Behind-The-Scenes Facts And Revelations

With iconic performances of some iconic lines, The Office had it all.

Since it doesn’t seem like we’ll ever get a reunion, here’s a look back on what went into life in Scranton, PA — including a very interesting little tidbit about the finale.

When she auditioned, Angela Kinsey was an operator for 1-800-DENTIST.


NBCUniversal Television

"It was great material. I actually sold a show to TBS 

 about my time as an operator because ... people are crazy, but they're also delightful."

Kinsey also said she once interned for Late Night With Conan O’Brien.

The temperature on set was kept at a cold 64 degrees.

Steve Carrell

NBCUniversal Television

Good thing he’s so lovable in every other way.

According to Rainn Wilson’s 2020 book The Bassoon King, Steve Carell had a condition during filming that made him sweat profusely, so the temperature on set was kept at 64 degrees Fahrenheit to combat Carell's active sweat glands.

Jim and Pam's first kiss was John Krasinski's first on-screen kiss.

Jim & Pam first kiss

NBCUniversal Television

Aww, this makes that moment even more precious.

On the “Office Ladies” podcast in 2020, Krasinski said, “That was my first acting kiss ever. Now that I say it, I wonder whenever else I would have had the opportunity, but no college play kissing, no nothing."

John Krasinski almost cost himself the part.

We can just picture his “Jim face” after this one.

Originally, he was supposed to audition for Dwight, but he convinced the casting directors to let him read for Jim. Then, in the waiting room, a man eating salad asked if he was nervous.

He responded, “I love the British show so much, and Americans have a tendency to just really screw these opportunities up. I just don't know how I'll live with myself if they screw this show up and ruin it for me.” The man responded, “My name's Greg Daniels, I'm the executive producer.”

Krasinski somehow still managed to get the part.

Phyllis Smith got cast while casting.

Phyllis on The Office

NBCUniversal Television

Now let’s try one with Phyllis in front of the camera.

Originally a casting agent for the show, she was reading the script with auditioning actors when director Ken Kwapis decided that Phyllis was the one who should play Phyllis.

Smith said, "Evidently, I was honing a craft I didn’t know I would ever use or need.”

The cast voted on the opening theme song.

Which one do you guys like?

Creator Greg Daniels gave the cast four versions of the song and let them vote on the winner.

The now-iconic song came from composer Jay Ferguson, which was then re-recorded by musician Bob Thiele Jr. and a group later dubbed The Scrantones, who appeared on the episode “The Booze Cruise.”

Dunder Mifflin’s address is an homage to the British show.

A little easter egg nod.

The Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin is located at 1725 Slough Avenue, which is a reference to the original show that took place in Slough, England.

“Diversity Day” was used in NBC’s sexual harassment training.

Diversity Day

NBCUniversal Television

So to reiterate… Your characters can do this on TV, but you can not in real life.

Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey said that every year NBC required the cast and crew to attend a sexual harassment seminar.

By Season 4 or 5, to illustrate how not to behave in the workplace, the training video contained clips from the “Diversity Day” episode of The Office.

Pam & Jim weren’t always going to end up together.

Jim & Pam

NBCUniversal Television

Then the writers realized they were acting crazy, and gave us what we wanted.

When Jim was in Stamford with Karen, there was a real possibility that Pam and Roy would get back together, and even end up together

Jenna Fischer said, “There was talk in the writer's room that maybe Roy could win Pam back. I also remember it was said that maybe Jim and Pam would not end up together in the end, but would instead lead one another to their actual true loves."

Kate Flannery (Meredith) actually did that bat stunt.


NBCUniversal Television

She even suggested it!

While the bat is inside the bag that Dwight trapped over Meredith's head was mechanical, Kate Flannery decided not to use a stunt double.

"I did all of it. The motorized thing on the head. It was like, sort of like this fluttery thing, something like a headband with a motor. And yes, I could breathe with a bag over my head. We figured it out. It was fine. So I was acting my ass off. And it was one of the most fun scenes I got to do with Rainn, since he is an amazing actor and he goes for it, man."

Nobody calls in “sick” like Steve Carrell.

A writer himself, Steve Carrell refused to cross the picket line during the writer’s strike in 2007. He even went so far as to call in sick, claiming “enlarged balls” were keeping him from coming in.

Jim & Pam's proposal scene was the most expensive shot on the show.

The Proposal

NBCUniversal Television

An epic moment deserves some production value.

Though the season-five proposal scene was less than a minute long, it was the most expensive shot in the entire series at $250,000.

Instead of filming at a real gas station, Fischer said the crew built one "in the parking lot of a Best Buy” in nine days, and Greg Daniels said it required high-tech special effects, huge rain machines, a month of meetings and a budget that doubled somewhere along the way.

The "Dinner Party" script was a first draft, and never re-written.

The Dinner Party

NBCUniversal Television

Wow, yeah this one’s good as is. Maybe take out the dog thing.

Season five's "Dinner Party" is often considered one of the funniest parts of the show and it was apparently one of the only episodes where the script was never rewritten.

Co-writer Gene Stupnitsky told Rolling Stone, “Most scripts get rewritten, and I think this was the only one ever done that didn't. The only thing that was changed was that in our first draft Jan hits the neighbor's dog and kills it on purpose.”

James Spader was only supposed to make a cameo.

Doors open when you’re talented and easy to work with.

The writers liked Spader so much that they asked him to expand the role. Paul Lieberstein said, “He has a way of taking on his character so fully, even in rehearsal, that it's changing the mood on the set. Everyone is discovering who they are with this new energy.”

Steve Carrell’s appearance in the finale was kept a secret from everyone.

Steve Carrell in the Finale

NBCUniversal Television

Secrecy level: Luke’s father.

The show-runners didn't even tell network executives that Steve Carell was going to appear in the finale. Greg Daniels said, “We shot the Steve stuff and we kept it out of the dailies, and didn’t tell them about it. At the table read, we gave the Steve Carell lines to Creed.”

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