Exclusive

Scoop: Ricky Gervais Reclaims His Office Job!

You know that faceoff between Office managers David Brent and Michael Scott that’s supposedly been in the works for, um, ever? Looks like it’s actually, finally gonna happen!

Sources confirm that Ricky Gervais will reprise his role from the original overseas version of the comedy in the Jan. 27 episode of the U.S. redo. As you’d expect, details are sketchy. But what I’m being told is that Gervais — who not only created the British Office but retains an exec producer title on the American remake — will cross paths (and perhaps swords?) with his Yank counterpart, Steve Carell’s Michael.

You’ll recall that last year Gervais hinted that he might be Dunder-Mifflin-bound this season, then producers denied anything was in the works. (Though the actor-comedian previously wrote an episode of the U.S. Office, this would be his first time appearing on screen.)

The news of Gervais’ guest gig comes just three days after his no-holds-barred stint as host of the Golden Globes drew fire from Hollywood’s thinnest-skinned elite. Thankfully, a backlash to the backlash seems to be kicking in.

Your thoughts?

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173 Comments
  1. Bill says:

    The replacement can’t be a well known actor. It would suck.
    No Seth rogan, no will ferrell, no not even Zach Galifinakis (who I love).
    No one on the show was well known before the show. Thats partly why its so good. (besides the boss lady, whatshername. James Caans biggest fan)

    I would watch it if Ricky did it. Other than him, only no name funny people need apply.

    • Will says:

      FINALLY!!!!!!!! Both offices are amazing but different, I can’t wait for the awkwardness!

    • Chiana says:

      Kathy Bates, currently starring in Harry’s Law. You couldn’t have googled it? (Although I figured she is so well-known, you wouldn’t have needed to…)

  2. meg says:

    Yes!!! I have been wanting Ricky gervais to be on the show for quite some time!! I LOVE the British office. A Dwight and Gareth showdown would also be sweet! I sure hope they find a permanent replacement for Michael Scott. I love this show!

  3. chinanski says:

    My thoughts are that you got beat on this by Vulture and are still calling it a scoop. You get plenty on your own, no need to take credit for one you didn’t get.

    • bigbowood says:

      I was thinking the same thing. Though, to be fair, Vulture didn’t have the part about Gervais playing David Brent… so that part could be a scoop on its own.

  4. ChefDulce says:

    Ricky would be the only person that could subsitute Steve Carell. Both are just too good and I don’t know of anyone who could make me laugh. You are right the backlash is beginning to subside and now people are looking at Robert Downer Jr. as such crybaby. Also tell me if it was not mildly sinister to his wife the comment that he wanted to bang 5 nominees? disgusting!

  5. michael m says:

    i am so excited! i loved the office uk and Gervais was amazing there. Us was great also of course. The combination of David Brent and the us office’s cast would be dreamlike. PLEASE MAKE IT HAPPEN!!!!!!!!

  6. Loser says:

    @chinanski – get a life

  7. aam says:

    sooo no one can replace michael scott, gervais can’t do it, dont want him anywhere near this show here, why cant this show just stick to its original people? it’s so sad.

    • Todd B. says:

      You realize that Ricky Gervais *was* the original cast, right?

    • OhDear says:

      Ricky Gervais created the show with Stephen Merchant.. Ricky is a comedic genius. Michael Scott is a very funny actor but wrote diddly squat for The Office.. Are you really saying the creator and main star of the ORIGINAL program can bring nothing to the show that despite being amusing is still a second rate spin-off? The mind boggles at that sort of narrow minded point of view. Further, he’s going to be in ONE episode .

      If The Office was still running in the UK (due to Ricky and Stephen concentrating on other work, not because of rating failures) we’d LOVE to see Michael in one or more episodes. Which shows a huge difference in attitudes eh..!!

    • Alex says:

      Are you slow?? I am guessing your reading skills are less than perfect. Gervais was in the orginal UK office which is what the American verison is based off on and no only is he the damn creater he has had rights over the American verison this whole time so where do you think half the funny lines came from? Your post is so sad.

      • Rex says:

        He’s a producer, not a writer. I don’t think he really wields all that much power over the American version of the show.

    • AL says:

      David Brent (Gervais) is the original!!! 2001 uk office! The best! Untouchable!!!! No better replacement for Michael if u ask me, but not sure if they should mess with such a classic character (Brent) particularly bringing him into different surroundings. Gervais will undoubtedly make it work, here’s hoping!!!

  8. Jake says:

    Come on, has anyone ever tried to watch U.K. office?? Lame…their English accents are soo thick as well as widespread that you can barely understand them, lets alone catch all the humor. Office U.S. all the way. Ricky Gervais alone should add a nice touch though.

    • Anthony says:

      God, you’re stupid.

    • Scott says:

      Are you kidding? The English version blows the US one away.

      • Nate says:

        I’d love to have some of whatever you’re smoking.

      • AL says:

        AGREED!!! 1000000000000 % ….. THE HUMOUR ISN’T CONSTANTLY TRYING TO BE FUNNY. ITS FANTASTICALLY RAW AND UNIQUE. THE US VERSION IS TRYING SO SO HARD TO BE GREAT AND APPEAL TO AN AUDIENCE. IN ITS OWN RIGHT IT IS GOOD, BUT NOTHING ON THE UK ORIGINAL. UK OFFICE AND PEEP SHOW, TOP 2 BEST BRITISH TV SHOWS OF THE LAST 10 YEARS. JUST WAITING FOR A US VERSION OF PEEP SHOW NEXT??? :)

    • OhDear says:

      Dick and head spring to mind.

    • Todd B. says:

      Tim is leap years ahead of “Jim”.
      Dawn is a thousand times better than “Pam”
      David Brent is way better than “Michael”
      Keith is a thousand times funnier than “Kevin”.
      Gareth is way funnier than Dwight (though Dwight might be the only saving grace of the US version).

      I think the UK version has the US one beat.

      • britishamerican says:

        The was hardly time for character build up in the british office. If it had gone for as long as the US I would agree but Tim and Dawn are so subtle that you wouldn’t catch it if someone didn’t tell you (or you watched the Office Special). The US has had more time to deliver on their characters. It isn’t that they are better, just more defined. (but then again, American TV MUST define characters completely for their audience)

        • paola says:

          Tim and Dawn were “so subtle that you wouldn’t catch it”? Seriously, what do you need to make something obvious, a brass band playing and huge fireworks spelling out “THIS IS A ROMANTIC COUPLE” in the sky? Anybody watching the UK Office while awake knew Tim and Dawn were an (awesome, unforgettable) would-be romance.

      • Mikos says:

        I can go either way on Dwight but he seems to have a “love him or loathe him” effect on most fans.
        Soooo, you saying he might be the saving grace of the show will make a half of the fans think you are a genius and the other half think you’re high.

    • loe says:

      come on mate, what an idiotic typically american point of view. you clearly don’t understand the british sense of humor and have to have Gervais tone it down for you in the american version. i actually feel sorry that you are not interlectual enough to understand the humor, because it is vastly funnier than the american version.

    • la says:

      I guess it would be a problem for you, as you would have to have a modicum of intelligence to appreciate the show.

    • NotAllAmericansAreAsStupidAsJAKE says:

      omg… shoot me!!!!!

    • Marlon says:

      And THIS is why people have issues with America and its attitude to the world. Poor little Yank having to understand a non-US accent

  9. Andrew says:

    Uh yeah, it’s not a scoop if someone else has already reported it.

    http://nymag.com/daily/entertainment/2011/01/ricky_gervais_will_cameo_on_am.html

  10. kevin says:

    I think the show is cancelled or the producers decide to call it quits within 2 seasons. You can’t lose your biggest star and expect to survive. Hence why when Jerry Seinfeld decided he was done, the show was over and why when 2 ‘friends’ wanted out, Friends called it quits. I hate to see the show suffer, but I’d be shocked if this wasn’t the beginning of the end for The Office.

    • Chiana says:

      Well, the show WAS called “Seinfeld” and the show was a combination of his vision and Larry Davids. Friends had also pretty much sputtered to a stop.
      The Office is different. It truly is an ensemble, although Steve Carell is the prime attraction. I think the writing has really improved this season, and Ed Helms is taking a bigger role. I could see it staying on a few more seasons, depending on who takes over Michael Scott’s position. I would be OK if Darryl or Andy battled for it, although a new character could bring in a great dynamic. I think another comedian would be best, as opposed to more of a dramatic actor like John or Jenna.

  11. Nate says:

    Gervais would ruin the show. How about David Wallace?

  12. jay says:

    God, I hate Ricky Gervais, he is so smug! He’s not funny at all. I just want him off my television!

  13. Ldn_stunna says:

    UK Office is better than Us Office. They are both great though. The people on here complaining about the accents on the UK office need to experience other nations cultures more, because it seems as if you hate anything thats not American. I could understand your views if the USA actually created the show. You get my props for Curb Your Enthusiasm though, that show is great!

  14. onestell says:

    Fantastic news! Can’t wait! And as for the Golden Globes? Kudos, Mr Gervais for making them hilarious!

    • kimd says:

      Maybe Steve Carrell will host the Golden Globes next year.I love him but he doesn’t have the same “I don’t give a crap” mentality that Ricky does.And Benny Hill was and is an abomination.Worst piece of s^&t ever on TV in any country.

  15. Gazzoo says:

    Don’t go overboard on this…it’s just a short cameo in the cold open, nothing more.

  16. Wrote this story on Monday–pls give credit
    I had an actual interview with Ricky Gervais. Very disappointed in Michael Ausiello.

    • AD says:

      If you’re disappointed in him, you haven’t read him before. He’s always claiming scoops that aren’t.

    • postsalot says:

      Sorry, can’t find anything but a link of you whining that people steal from you. And a reference to Gervais “implying” he’d be on the show. Link the original interview you’re talking about maybe?

  17. Nene says:

    I’m English and actually prefer the American Office, though Tim and Dawn were more heartwarming than Jim and Pam purely because the original Office ended at the perfect point for them, while they were on a romantic high. I love Ricky, (well done on the Globes, poor sensitive little actors!) but Michael Scott is as cringeworthy as Brent but infinitely more loveable. I don’t think anyone should replace Steve Carell. The series should end. If Brent and Scott are in the same episode…well, it’s cool but I think the hype will leave it dead in the water and anyway, you know what happens when a man meets his doppelganger? He dies… :s

    • Lisa says:

      “How will I know which one was me?”

    • Chiana says:

      Agreed! That’s why I prefer the American version. They were aiming for a longer schedule, so they introduced more drama and more complex characters – a combination of lovable, pathetic and infuritating. Ricky was aiming more for the funnybone I think. It’s just what people prefer, I think, and shouldn’t indicate anyone’s intelligence is lacking. Web posters are very often intolerant. It’s annoying.

  18. sw hamm says:

    Only one person should replace Michael as supervisor… TODD PACKER!!! The world needs more Packer!

  19. maj says:

    they aren’t replacing Steve with Ricky, they are saying he’s going to make an appearance on the show..

  20. Mandy says:

    I started watching The Office cause I was a huge fan of Steve Carrell, and then later on realized it was a re-make of a british version, Now I’ve seen every single episode of both versions. And I think that the American version is waaaay better, and it’s not because I don’t like british humor, because I do I’m a huge fan of Benny Hill and Monty Python and Faulty Towers, but I just cannot stand the british version of the office. I might cry when Steve Carrell leaves the show….maybe. But Ricky Gervais? I could live without him.

    • Jasper Flask says:

      Benny Hill and Monty Python and Faulty (FAWLTY. The clue in in the characters name) Towers??? Nothing from the last 40 years then? That is like someone in the UK saying “I love American humour..y`know,Bilko,Mash and Mr Ed etc”

  21. MuchoGranola says:

    That is awesome news! I hope it’s true!

  22. emmy says:

    you CANNOT top Steve Carrell as Michael Scott

  23. nick says:

    Wow. Hello all Americans: your stupidity is world famous, but having stumbled upon these comments, it appears it has been grossly under-exaggerated.
    “I like Benny Hill and Fawlty Towers and Monty Python”. Python is gash, always was – there were four, five funny sketches, tops. Have you seen any British TV comedies since the Eighties?
    The US version is better than the UK version?
    Really? Really?
    Nuance, subtlety, irony, pathos, bathos – it’s all just another world to you lot isn’t it. If it hasn’t got Michael Scott learning a heart-warming lesson by the end of the episode, you’re just not interested, are you?
    Extraordinary.

    • Samboy5000 says:

      Nick FTW!… Couldn’t have put it better myself. Further, American TV shows do not know when to quit! Why do they run shows for so long? Better go out on a high note and leave people wanting more rather than thrashing it out to the point where the show is redundant.

    • matt says:

      I’m English living in Canada and enjoy both versions but prefer the English Office … hands down. However, just reading all these competetive comments is driving me mental. Unfortunately, it’s the comments from the UK people that are getting to me. You are actually sounding like the fictional American’s you critisise! Arrogant, know-it-all, smug, small-minded etc etc …
      Yes, there are lots of amazing Brit-comedy shows out there that don’t get picked up and appreciated by wider international audiences. So what? To assume that all American comedy is bad is the most naive rubbish I’ve heard. Ever watched It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia? 30 Rock? Curb your Enthusiasm?
      How about drama? American drama wipes the floor with it’s British counterparts.

  24. that'swhatshesaid says:

    The reporting of this story is pretty irresponsible without the FACTS. Ricky is reprising David Brent in what is descibed as a cameo during the show’s cold open. Cute tie-in the the original Office, but hardly anything to get this excited about.

    In his haste to SCOOP other websites, Ausiello just didn’t have the facts and wrote a misleading newsbite. EW had it correct 26 minutes later. If I continue to read this website (jury is still out), then I’ll take what I read with a grain of salt!

    • rob't says:

      Agree. Ricky himself says “Blink and you’ll miss me.” As for the people saying they don’t want him to take over Carrell’s role !?!?!? Duh! When he and Stephen Merchant finished making the British “Office” it was because they had done everything they wanted to do with it – not because they couldn’t have strung it out and gone on! To think that Ricky would want to take over Carrell’s position in the US version is nonsense. Like asking the president of IBM to take over the position of his shipping manager. Please remember that Steve Carrell works for Ricky – if Ricky had wanted it any other way it would’ve happened a long time ago.

  25. kimd says:

    What is David Brent doing in Scranton,Pennsylvania? Or is Michael Scott in Slough,England? Either way,it’ll be cool.

  26. Lisa says:

    Read Ricky’s blog. He says “blink and you’ll miss it.” It’s just a cameo.

  27. Daniell says:

    This is great news if anyone is going to replace steve it should be him.

  28. loe says:

    Danielle! NOOOOOOO! GEVAIS IS JUST DOING A CAMEO! NOT TAKING OVER AS MICHAEL SCOTT!!!!! JEEEEEEEEZ!

  29. LP says:

    After seeing Ricky’s Office, I never had a desire to see the remake. There was no point. It seemed like it would spoil a good thing.

  30. Karyn says:

    Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I almost wet my pants with glee reading this! Love love love Ricky Gervais!

  31. Penny says:

    Love Ricky!!! He would be the only perfect replacement to Steve. I do hope that David & Michael have a chance to rub each other wrong in some upcoming episodes. Would be hilarious!!!
    Long live The Office!

  32. Glenn says:

    Today’s cure is tomorrow’s headache.

  33. nick from UK says:

    Ricky, why do this? David Brent is one of the best comedy characters ever created for our TV screens and he should be left that way. No need to take him to the American version, however brief his appearance is. This just won’t feel right, especially after this amount of time. If you can’t resist the urge to be David again, just put on the suit and do a bad comedy routine in private. The feelings will pass.

  34. bluesbabe77 says:

    Just a quick heads up to some of you…
    Other than in reality TV – The characters on a TV show aren’t real people. They are ACTORS. Those ACTORS are not “making it ALL up as they go along”, they are reciting lines that were written for them by WRITERS. The original WRITERS of a show are often also the CREATORS of the show, and so if the CREATORS of the show did not come up with the idea for the show in the first the show would not exist!! – So for those of you who are “big fans” of any particular show and have a “problem” with its writers or creators – you need to know that if that “di*#-head” or whatever had not come up with the show or written the show in the first place, you would be probably be even lonelier on a Thursday night than I am sure you already are.

  35. ddogg says:

    Now if only the French and French Canadian bosses would make cameos. La Job Le Bureau. I really wish they’d release these on DVD with English subs.

  36. RS says:

    NO GERVAIS!!!!!!!!!. you cant do this… honestly. Brent is DONE. The UK office is in a different league to the American one. By putting Brent into the American one, your going to make some kind of hybrid office that will still not be as good as the first.

    DONT DO IT. (and pay me for suggesting that you shouldn’t do it, as i am basically helping you save your credibility for the future. thanks)

    actually do do it.. may as well rake in the cash while you can.. I would.

  37. CalicoPaisley says:

    Okay. I’m an American. Let me start off by saying I LIKE the UK version. But by far I’ve always felt that it was sort of a practice run for making the US version great, because in my not-so-humble opinion I think it’s really superior. I think Gervais is a much better producer/writer than he is an actor… that goes for his standup too. His delivery is just awful. David Brent and Michael Scott are both supposed to be discomfort comedy characters, but Gervais ALWAYS makes me groan and facepalm and Carell makes me cringe but I’m always chuckling at the same time. THAT SAID, I think this is a hilarious announcement and I’m willing to give Gervais another chance. Don’t disappoint us, man!!!

    • Paul 'the party animal' Parker says:

      ooohhhh mmmyyyyy GOD! (canned laughter) A practice run for the US version(canned laughter/rising to crescendo) Calico, you are beyond help. Whats the point (canned groans)…..if you need it explained to you then you will never get it (canned sobbing/with tears).

      ‘I’d kick it and say…knob head’

  38. Mr K Dilkington says:

    I’d rather be a moth.

    Ricky would be brilliant in the US office, take Gareth with him as well.

  39. Michelle says:

    Best birthday gift!!! Can’t wait….love Ricky!,,

  40. RobM says:

    According to my Google Reader feeds, Vulture beat you to the exclusive.

    Michael, I’m disappointed with you. First you throw AV Club under a bus by refusing to question the Big Love crew’s claims that Chloe Sevigny was antagonized into saying the last season wasn’t good, and now you don’t give credit where it’s due, even though you know plenty of other sites credit you when you do get your frequent, legitimate scoops.

  41. bp says:

    The original BBC production of “The Office” is like a flawless diamond– multi-faceted, brilliant, subtle yet outrageous, timeless and a true rarity in its sublime, enduring perfection.

    The US version, OTOH, is a cubic zirconium, a cheap, dumbed-down shopping mall copy of the real thing–a necessity for the majority of the American audience, who are both unwilling and unable to appreciate Ricky Gervais’ genius.

    Rent Season 1 and see for yourself–Gervais blows Carell away. Forget Ricky’s standup, David Brent is the role he was born to play.

    The fact that Brent is actually painful to watch at times is what makes it so perfect. A real person vs the American “character”.

    NBC should just run the UK office when Carrell leaves. Write the change of venue into the finale.

  42. Julie Helmick says:

    The only reason we even watched the Globes was to see Ricky Gervais. He is always, always, always a treat. Thin skinned Hollywood elite indeed. Have never watched the U.S. Office but certainly will not miss Gervais doing David Brent. The original UK Office series is one of the most brilliant things ever done. If you haven’t seen it, don’t miss it.

  43. Stephen says:

    From an unbiased Australian viewpoint…

    The UK Office is simply the greatest comedy series in history.
    The US Office is really quite good.
    Ricky Gervais = comedy genius.
    Steve Carell = amusing actor

    In order….
    1. The UK Office
    2. Fawlty Towers
    3. Extras
    4. Mr Ed
    5. The US Office

  44. Philip says:

    What about Kath and Kim. That’s quite funny.

  45. Tati says:

    YES.. Looking forward to this!

  46. Neens says:

    Jerry Seinfeld >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>for Dunder Mifflin Manager

    • Tay says:

      lol!…but that would actually be cool when i think about it. i’ve always compared the two type of shows (Seinfeld/Office) of having that humor that relates to regualr everyday people, which is what i love about these two shows!!!

  47. Rick says:

    Ricky Gervais Rules!!!!….If it is only a cameo in the opening that would suck because he would make it the greatest episode ever!!!!!

  48. Hey, always great to see other folks from the hole world in my looking, I definitely appreciate the time it must have taken to place together this great website. friendly regards

  49. matt says:

    i believe jim carrey would be better for the office because no offense to all the uk fans but the office needs a leader that can be wacky ,
    funny and clever but i barely could watch the uk version because the comedy felt very dry with that said jim carrey has starred in a lot
    of great movies like me myself and irene , liar liar ,bruce almighty,
    ace ventura , and the cable guy and these are most of my favorite movies i would say adam sandler would make a good boss for the office but almost everyone would complain and he is beyond funny both jim carrey and adam sandler are the best in the comedy buisness along with
    the late great chris farley

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