Fall TV Preview

NBC Boss Assesses The Office's Upcoming Transition, Calls James Spader 'A Perfect Fit'

NBC entertainment chair Robert Greenblatt is approaching The Office‘s upcoming season sans Steve Carell with “very measured” expectations, yet has faith that the long-running comedy can hold its ground.

“My expectations are always very measured, so that we can under-expect and then hopefully over-deliver,” Greenblatt said Monday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour. “The Office is very important to us – it’s our No. 1 show in all kinds of demos — and shows go through transitions as they age, and losing Steve is one of those.”

That said, Greenblatt claimed he “would be thrilled if it continues to do what it had been doing,” ratings-wise, even with fresh blood lording over Dunder Mifflin.

And what about that new blood? Greenblatt – who has attended two table reads featuring James Spader as Robert California, the new company CEO who, it’s been said, “has a power to convince and manipulate, like a high-class weirdo Jedi warrior” – says the multiple Emmy-winning Boston Legal alum “is completely different than Steve [Carell], with his own iconoclastic kind of acting style, and his character is very unique. He’s a perfect fit in that mix.”

Greenblatt in fact suspects that having Spader on board – as well as other unnamed guest stars sprinkled throughout the season – will goose the Office‘s writing staff to “get back on their game and refocus on what the show is.”

What do you think, Office fans — could the show in fact be the better for having Spader on board?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Fernanda says:

    Just hoping that the show will continue to rock, Steve was a key character to The Office, but somehow after all these years we got used to everybody else and icons like Kelly, Creed or Stanley still on their own are extremely funny! Best luck to the new cast members and waiting for the next season!

  2. RTA says:

    I think saying “very measured” expectations is true. The viewing public will decide when the episodes premiere. The problem with James Spader is you either love him (via Boston Legal) or you dislike him based on his demure personality. I personally feel he comes across as a younger, boring William Hurt.

  3. Stormy says:

    I’d love Spader on board. Loved the brit show, stopped watching when they cast Steve Carrell [no thank you]. But Spader is hilarious and sexy in a creepy kind of way, so, yes, yes, yes.

  4. Danny says:

    So is Spader set to be a recurring guest star like Kathy Bates, a consistent presence (yet not quite a regular) like Malora Hardin, or a full-flegded star with his name in the credits and everything?

    • tnsmoke says:

      If the home base for Sabre is still in Florida I doubt if he will be at the Scranton Branch as often as Jan but we will probably see him talk on the phone to the branch and show up now and then. Unless he hooks up with Angela, Kelly, Pam, Erin or Phyllis, doubt if he will make as many booty calls as Jan did with Michael.

      • tnsmoke says:

        Oh, with his stellar career am sure he will be in the opening credits, maybe last like “and with James Spader”.

  5. melania says:

    I usually like James Spader, but in his brief appearance as this new character I found him to be annoying to the extreme. Just felt like changing the channel when he was on.

  6. Fletchguy says:

    I love the show but it took a huge hit with Steve leaving. If NBC’s boss thinks spader is a good idea or fit he might want to go online and read the fans thoughts as it looks like a good 85% of them hate spader and his character. If Spader is on again I know Ill be just skipping the show. As much as I like the other characters Spader is just a horrible fit. He doesn’t fit the cast or the show and he just isn’t a funny guy. he was pretty annoying and stupid in his appearences last season. I guess thats why NBC is kind of an irrelevent network since they dont listen and do a ton of dumb stuff to make the watchers leave.

  7. Lovemesomespader says:

    For those of us that are Spader fans and know of his acting skills… he is going to knock it out the park. With that said, James will be nominated for another Emmy.

  8. Amy says:

    I am honestly not very optimistic. I hated the last few episodes (minus Creed in the bosses chair). It is just not the same without Michael Scott and I hate how they pretend like he was never there. I mean seriously, the won’t even mention the name Michael Scott. What is that about? It is not like Steve Carrell trademarked it and said no one is allowed to say him name on the show ever again. No one will be as good as Steve Carrell!

  9. Goon says:

    James Spader is a magnificent actor and I’m very thrilled he joined The Office. That was the right choice and the show could go on for years. Would love to see him get yet another Emmy.

  10. Emgee says:

    Last season of “The Office” sucked big time…in its entirety, the only exception being Steve Carrell’s exit episode.

    I don’t plan on watching it at all this year.

  11. Rich says:

    Of course they say he’s a perfect fit. What are they going to say? That he doesn’t fit at all and the show will be worse for his inclusion?