What’s going on?
Writer Andy Greene explained in his new book — “The Office: The Untold Story of the Greatest Sitcom of the 2000s” — that the show’s writers and producers planned to split up Jim and Pam in the final season, according to Collider.
Per Collider, John Krasinski pushed the idea as well, according to the book.
- “My whole pitch to Greg was that we’ve done so much with Jim and Pam, and now, after marriage and kids, there was a bit of a lull there, I think, for them about what they wanted to do … And I said to Greg, ‘It would be really interesting to see how that split will affect two people that you know so well.’”
Writers came up with different ideas of how to do it. One of them included having Pam and Brian (remember him?) getting together.
However, the writers noticed the negative fan reaction to the plot, according to Mental Floss. So they pulled the idea.
- Per Mental Floss, the writers “backtracked so quickly, they even had to re-edit certain episodes that had already been shot to nix the idea of Jim and Pam splitting up. Which is something the show’s millions of fans will be forever grateful for.”
The book also revealed that Steve Carell, who played Michael Scott, didn’t want to leave the show, as I wrote for the Deseret News. In fact, sound mixer Brian Wittle told Greene in the book that Carell decided to leave after NBC didn’t have a big reaction to him deciding to leave.
Here’s how Collider explained it:
I sat with him one time and he told me the story. He was doing a radio interview and he haphazardly mentioned, almost unconsciously, that it might be his last season. He didn’t plan on saying it out loud and he hadn’t decided anything. He was kind of thinking out loud, but he did it in an interview in public and it created news. Then what he said was the people connected to the show had no reaction to it. They didn’t call and say, ‘What? You wanna leave?’ He said he didn’t get any kind of response from them. When he realized he didn’t get any kind of response from them, he thought, ‘Oh, maybe they don’t really care if I leave. Maybe I should go do other things.’ So I think that made it easier, because when the news broke that he was considering it, the people that are in charge of keeping him there didn’t make a big effort to do so until afterward.