The Office: Who's Coming Back? Who's Fired? Plus: The Cast Fondly Looks Back at 9 Seasons

NBC Universal EventsEmotions were running high on Wednesday when members of the media dropped by the set of The Office for one last visit with the cast of the departing comedy.

Most of the press conference-style interview with stars John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer, Rainn Wilson and showrunner Greg Daniels, to name a few, was spent reminiscing about the past nine years. But the group did drop a few select, series-ending scooplets, including the names of some returning familiar faces (alas, not Steve Carell), a tease for a shocking ouster of sorts and more.

ROAD TO WRAP-UP | Daniels had advice for lapsed fans who might be waiting until the very end to tune back in: Hop back on board now. “If you look at how many characters we have here and you think that [the finale] will be our 200th half hour, I don’t think we are planning on packing everything into the last episode,” he explained. In fact, the installment airing a week from this Thursday marks “the beginning of the end, where we start to break down what’s going on with this documentary and see [the] behind the scenes of who’s involved.”

IN-FLUX FINALE | As for what fans can expect in The Office‘s final hour, even Daniels isn’t completely sure. “There’s an idea,” he noted, “but it’s a very collaborative process. Every time we have a table read and somebody comes up with a better idea than we have in the script, it pulls the story forward a little bit and we have to invent something at the end.” He added, “We do have a goal that we’re aiming for, how we get there is changing.”

RELATED | The Office Boss: Retooled Spin-Off Episode Will Still Air – and Change Up the Dwangela Plan

SHOCKING SENDOFF | “Someone is fired” in Episode 15, Daniels revealed, adding only: “There’s drama, and someone has to pay for it.”

THAT’S WHAT HE SAID… AGAIN | Once more, Daniels reasserted that Carell would not return to his old stomping grounds before the series’ swan song. (Bummer.) The showrunner maintained that “Steve is very much of the opinion that the ‘Goodbye Michael’ episode and the story arc that we did leading up to it was his goodbye and end to the show, and that [this season] is the goodbye the rest of the show gets to have.” So presently, there still aren’t “any plans for him to come back.” Cushioning the blow a bit, the EP promised: “There are still a lot of good things that we have planned for the rest of the goodbyes,” including giving each character his or her own “really good, interesting sendoff.”

WELCOME BACK, KALING & CO. | Carell, Schmarell! The Office‘s final installments will see comebacks from more than a few friendly faces. “In an upcoming episode, Zach Woods (Gabe) comes back,” Daniels shared. “Mindy [Kaling] and B.J. [Novak] should be in the finale, and we’re talking about possibly another episode — although Mindy’s in production of [The Mindy Project].” Ken Kwapis, who directed the series’ pilot episode, among others, will also return to direct the two-part finale.

LOVERS’ QUARREL | As we previously reported, expect “some conflict” between Andy and Erin when the Ivy League grad is back in town, Ed Helms previews. “I mean, he left her on a boat for a long time,” Ellie Kemper added with a laugh. “There’s room for tension.”

And in non-spoilery news, the cast took some time to look back at the past nine years and shared some of their favorite moments and lessons learned. As a huge fan of The Office, I felt obliged to pass their sentiments along.

ON DUNDER MIFFLIN TRINKETS THEY’D LIKE TO KEEP

ED HELMS | “I actually really want Andy’s Cornell diploma for some reason. I really like that.”
ANGELA KINSEY | “I have my eye on about three of Angela’s cat figurines.”
PHYLLIS SMITH | “I want my first Dundie, for ‘Bushiest Beaver.’”
JENNA FISHCER | “I want Pam’s watercolor that Michael bought at her art show. And the receptionist sign — even though I don’t sit there anymore.”
RAINN WILSON |I want Dwight’s car.”

ON THEIR FAVORITE EPISODES :

ELLIE KEMPER | “Mine was ‘Dinner Party.’”
KINSEY | “I love the first Christmas episode. That’s one of my all-time favorites. We had Yankee Swap and Angela Martin got that poster of the babies.”
WILSON | “I like ‘The Injury’ from Season 2. I know that’s a big fan favorite as well, but it’s just such a classic in my mind. Dwight getting in a car accident and throwing up on his car, [and] his personality changing and forming a friendship with Pam…”
FISCHER | I was going to say ‘The Injury’ as well. I really love the episodes where Pam and Dwight become friends. We just did one, actually, where Pam and Dwight team up for a common goal, and while we were shooting it I realized this is probably the last one of those stories we’ll do… You can only have so many, right?”

ON WHY THEY’VE STUCK WITH THE SHOW SO LONG, EVEN WITH BIG-SCREEN SUCCESSES

JOHN KRASINSKI | “I think that this show and this job is a gift, [and] we all knew it from the beginning. We feel so lucky. It sounds cliche, but it’s totally true. This is one of those jobs that you don’t wait until your time’s over; you beg every single year to come back and you hold on to the cuff of people’s pants until they bring you back. [Laughs] It’s more exciting than anything else to come back to this show. It’s not something you give up on. It feels like you’re all in it together. I don’t think I ever felt a moment of anybody feeling like this was [just] an opportunity for bigger things. If bigger things came, great, and we’d all fully support it. But to come back was the real dream and the real goal. I felt more honored to be a part of this show than anything else I’ve done.”

ON HOW THE MORE THINGS CHANGE, THE MORE THEY STAY THE SAME

FISCHER | “We still feel about each other – and see each other — through the eyes of those first-season relationships… It seems the same.”
WILSON | “John [Krasinski] and Jenna [Fischer] and Steve [Carell] and I went out to lunch when we were shooting the pilot and we were having this conversation about, ‘Can you imagine if the show got picked up? How cool that would be?’ And one of us said, ‘What if it went for a season or more? What if we actually did a full run of this show?!’ We [all knew] that it would change our lives and would be incredible and that these are the roles we’d be known for for the rest of our lives. It’s so weird now, nine years later, [having] that lunch coming true. People have asked me what I’m going to miss most and it’s really clear to me: This is my other family. This is where I’ve been coming for nine years, and I love all of these people. We’ve grown up together; we’ve had children, we’ve gotten married, we’ve gotten divorced, we’ve cried together, we’ve fought a little bit — not like Grey’s Anatomy [Laughs] — and that’s really what I’ll miss the most. We went from goofy kids nine years ago to the giant, megalomaniac TV stars you see in front of you. [Laughs]“

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68 Comments
  1. M says:

    I’d rather if a reappearance by Steve Carrell would be a surprise instead of knowing about it before. I would enjoy it so much more if I wasn’t expecting it and he just popped up.

    • Belle says:

      The documentary crew should take a short trip to Colorado where Michael and Holly live…Michael and Holly don’t have any spoken words, and in a distance the camera crew “sees” a very pregnant Holly and Michael walking into an OB/GYN and then fades out. It wouldn’t change Steve’s swan-song episode, it just gives us fans a glimpse into how Michael’s doing. Gabe will out himself as being the Scranton Strangler :)

    • var says:

      I thought the same but Steve is correct, this is the time to say good bye to the entire cast, their send off. The show was not just a one man affair, they all made it the wonderful success it has been. I shall miss them but the beauty of the internet is that I can watch the episodes over and over line whenever I need a laugh. God Bless them.

  2. PutAForkInIt says:

    Lets’ review:

    1) The Office should have ended when Steve Carrell left
    2) American Idol should have ended when Simon Cowell left
    3) Two and a Half Men should have ended when Charlie Sheen left
    etc. etc. etc.

  3. My theory is that Michael is behind the documentary, and that they are all watching it at some event 10 or 20 years in the future, like a reunion or something.

    • Angela says:

      Awwww, you know, I would actually like that to be the ending. That’d be rather sweet.

    • Midori004 says:

      I agree with that theory, however I’d have it be Micheal’s funeral (why he isn’t there) and they are playing clips from the documentary.

      • what is wrong with us that we both were thinking that it would have to be a funeral?
        why not the wedding of Michael and Holly, or first annivesary? The documentary is Michael’s way of telling the story of “How I Met My Wife”, even the stories that had nothing to do with Holly and the stories that happened after he left his job (because he kept paying the documentarians and forgot to stop payment or something. Make a joke out of it).

  4. Kalee says:

    Crosses fingers Erin hits Andy in the head snapping Andy out of his two year’s worth of being insufferably annoying.

    • Silly Girl says:

      I agree 100% Kalee. Ed Helms brought absolutely nothing to the show. He is annoying and not nice to look at. He tried to be like “Michael Scott” and it was just downright annoying.

  5. Kenny says:

    Damn i’m going to miss these people, thank God this show will live forever in Reruns and in my heart :)

  6. Rob says:

    Jim Carrey should reprise his role as the guy from the finger lakes.

  7. that's what she said... says:

    Dwight gets fired. Jim becomes successful Andy Benard dies. Michael Scott comes back for final episode. That would be great. Dwight one will happen since he was to get a spinoff.

  8. Chuck Finley (AJ) says:

    Michael kills Toby. The end.

  9. OMED-Josh says:

    Gabe’s got to be revealed as the real Scranton Strangler, right?

  10. Amelia says:

    Steve Carell don’t be a douche you had your perfect goodbye sure but you should say farewell with the cast! How could you not? It was the platform that really put you out there and beyond that saying goodbye with your friends would be an amazing feeling for the fans.

  11. Bella says:

    I’m really excited for B.J. and Mindy to come back! Can’t wait to see Ryan and Kelly for one last time! Hopefully, it’s for more than just a brief cut-away scene though and that it shows them interacting with the cast. And you know, I’d love to see Steve come back but if they are all happy with his last arc and where they left Michael, then so am I. I loved how Michael left and wouldn’t want it to be tarnished if they felt that they couldn’t do a return justice. I can also see Steve not wanting to draw away from the other cast (especially the more minor characters) who have stayed with the show and wanting to allow them to have their moments to shine. Steve seems like a really good guy and very grateful too. For some of the more minor characters, these wrap-up eps may be the last chance for them to get themselves out there and secure more work after the show ends. Steve knows he is a big star, but these other great actors have not had as much opportunity to show their chops.

    I also love how appreciative this cast is of what the show has done for them and how much they all love each other. John and Rainn’s comments as well as prior comments from the other cast members show what great, humble people they are. I’m so happy that they were such a success. Good things happen to good people and I’m happy that they have such a good perspective on this. John has said in recent interviews that the show has given him everything and taken him to places in life where he’s been able to meet his wife and obtain good career opportunities, and that’s why he would never turn his back on the show. I wish more tv stars would be like this! This cast is truly good people and I can’t wait to see what they have in store for us!

  12. Lauren says:

    Awww. Tear!

  13. Shari says:

    Still holding out hope for a SURPRISE Michael Scott appearance at the end and hope all of this “no he’s not coming back” is just misdirection. Even if its just Michael’s voice on the phone

  14. Diana says:

    I’ve been rewatching the whole series to date in anticipation of this finale. I will miss it.

  15. A says:

    Very bummed that Michael won’t be back. Still hoping for a surprise visit. The show absolutely should have ended after he left. While the other characters are funny, this show was all about Michael. The first season without him was pretty funny, but this season has been a total flop without Andy, Kelly, and Ryan. I feel short-changed that he won’t be back after sticking with the show through the dark times without Michael!

  16. Luli101 says:

    <3 Michael Scott

  17. Jeremy C says:

    I’d kind of like to see the show fade to black, and then it’s a shot of Michael turning off a TV, turning to the camera, and saying “I’d say that turned out pretty well. Good job.”

  18. Brandon says:

    Without Michael Scott, this ending will be worse than Lost.

  19. Gogi says:

    I cried my eyes out when Michael left. He just left such a bug hole in my heart, that no one in the whole crew could fill again. And I always hoped that he would visit with Holly and their wonderful twins because they we’re passing by and just wanted to say hello. I think I’m going to cry again when he won’t appear for the very last time. It would feel awkward and as if there was something missing.

    I also would like Jim’s one last big prank on Dwight, where in the end they hug and confess to the camera that they actually liked eachother a lot.
    And there’s Stanley… Something about him in the end after so much crying that just cracks you up. I’m already crying just thinking about the show will end without Michael ;(

  20. David says:

    I hope it has one of those rare endings when at the end you say “Ohhhhhhh!! Awesome!!” And not “wtf!?”

  21. Rob Galgano says:

    Toby Flenderson IS the Scranton Strangler!

    • Jessie says:

      I mean I guess it could be true since he did attend the trial but they did say it was because of jury duty. I can see it though.

  22. Spoileralert says:

    Jim and pams daughter gets sick from a problem concerning their home, since jim bought the house with his family bias and never checked the house for problems.Pam calls jim, but hes still upset and sends it to voice mail. The angst pam has been bottling in explodes outward and she reveals that their child may be roys or the camera mans on the voice mail. The company jim has been at in philadelphia had been a scam all along leaving jim and darryl with a mountain of debt. Darryls infedelity gets him fired, and the rage he had for jim before comes back even more so. Jim finally checks his voice mail and returns to scranton, but its too late. Jim and pam divorce, blaming eachother for stealing eachothers dreams and eachother for the loss of their daughter. The finale becomes an anti-bullying promotion, showing all the times jim bullied dwight and excused it as harmless pranks. The purpose of the documentary was to show people that people who are bullied can be themselves like dwight, angela, creed, oscar, andy etc, and be happy regardless of what pretentious people like jim and pam do to them. Jim and pam were made to seem like the stars all along, but they were unknowingly the antagonists, always criticizing, condescending, and patronizing their coworkers. The bully culture in american society is exploited and people begin to embrace their corky attitudes and the jim and pams of society are now questioning how their attituses effect the people they condescend to.

    • KatieG says:

      Aww, were you picked on growing up? Do people still pick on you? Poor baby

    • officemaniac says:

      Dude that’s the single dumbest comment here. No way Jim and Pam divorce. Think before you post cuz that was a waste of space. Just terrible.

    • Silvia says:

      That’s a little dramatic don’t you think? Why does EVERYTHING in America have to be a platform for some big PC campaign?. America needs lighthearted, funny, mindless humor, as the Office has provided for the last 9 seasons.You can find a scenario, as gloomy as yours, in all things today,and that’s the problem with our society. Take a chill pill and lighten up spoileralert.

  23. wow…that, is dark. I think Jim and Pam will get worse but that the camera crew will show them a montage of their moments leaving Jim to realize that he should put his family first and return to scranton where he and pam will live halpertly ever after. :D

    • JoLynn says:

      I was thinking the same thing. I believe watching how their relationship grew and blossomed will definitely trigger something in Jim and he will get his priorities back in check.

  24. blackcow81 says:

    Scranton Strangler=Creed.

  25. Heather says:

    I want Dwight to find out he really is the father of Angela’s baby it just doesn’t seem right for it to be the senators

    • Cassondra says:

      I totally agree! After what he did to Angela. Even though she isnt the nicest person around… I still think the baby is better off if Dwight is the father

  26. Heather says:

    And Michael and holly should be in the last episode even though he already goodbye he won’t be cool if we don’t see him again

  27. Heather says:

    Also very curious if and when the office members find out about oscars affair and if Dwight will take back Angela if she gets out of her wacko marriage

  28. Debbie says:

    I really wish Steve Carrell would come in for the finale. I think he was one of the main reasons the show was such as success. I’m not discounting anyone elses part in the show, but there was no boss like Michael Scott, nor will there ever be. Sure, there might be copycats, but Michael Scott was one of a kind, and maybe he will have a change of heart at the last minute. Who knows. Anything is possible, right? “Never say never;” is my motto.
    I think it would be a fitting end to see Michael Scott one last time. Fingers crossed!!

  29. Sam says:

    The show wasn’t just Michael but had anyone major left..Jim or Dwight or even Pam the show was going to be affected. Andy was good in Andy’s role. I think the creators think we forget old characters. I mean Darell is nothing like that old bold Darell. He’s so touchy now. Andy wasnt mean Andy was just naughty. The show has been a drag. I know this because I used to laugh in earlier seasons and now I just am curious. And disappointed. Steve Carell please come back for the last episode so the office can be remembered as a good show!

  30. Jake Klimcak says:

    The show did not do a good job at picking the manager should of brought in a new face that way they don’t have to screw up there personalities.
    I thought Rickey Gervais was the man HIS SHOW!

  31. RAL says:

    For Toby or Gabe to be the Scranton strangler is pretty much impossible. Gabe was in Tallahassee when the show started and all the killings stopped after Toby was done with jury duty. It also wouldn’t make sense for the guy in jail to have joked Toby when he went to visit him.

  32. beejan says:

    … by far the greatest show ever… ever.

  33. jayson, polo says:

    Please for the luv of all your fans i can not stress how improtant that yes,,,steve carrell,,does do the last episode,,its unfair to office fans,,steve dont break are harts. Like that you started the. Show. And made it classics,,,dont make jim helperd,,finsh it with out you steve he,s your buddy and the relationship is so special beetween him and steve cum on micheal scott paper company,,with him and his new wife n a new city. Jus dont let the show end with out you steve please ,,truely,,your biggest fan steve,,,, dans,life,bruce almighty,get,smart remake u&da rock,,&date nite,ive supported u,n your movies so support me ass a fan please thankyou,,,,,

  34. Tim lwig says:

    I’d like to see a spinoff of the farm/ pam&jim, after 9 seasons I’d say mix it up abit but :/ the current cast is great >_< I want more lol

  35. R says:

    Dwight has to be the father of Angela’s baby and its because he grabbed the wrong diaper to be tested. Remember PB&J also had their baby there as well… Would suck because I would want Dwight to get married to Esther… Creed might die that would be sad… And at least bring Holly back to tell the fans that her and Micheal are doing fine…

    But it was a good run for the show.., Good luck cast of “The Office” in your future endeavors and THANK YOU for the MEMORIES!

  36. dave says:

    david wallace or ryan is the scranton strangler

    maybe kevin.

  37. dave says:

    no toby! its toby it all makee sense

  38. AgentMichaelScar says:

    Well if Toby was the Scranton Strangler why would he be working and not in prison. My ideal ending is the office crew in the conference room watching the documentary from season 1 to the end filled with flashbacks and closing with Jim saying” best year ever “with the screen going black. But then shows Michael on the couch with a pregnant holly watching and saying “that’s what she said”.

    I’m going to miss the office more than anything. I’ve watched since the beginning and stayed till the end. <3 the office. Waiting for the reunion!

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