Starring Steve Carell, John Krasinski, Rainn Wilson, Angela Kinsey and Jenna Fischer, among others, The Office (US) — now streaming on Netflix — is one of the ultimate fan-favourite sitcoms of all time. It makes the reason Krasinski refused to shoot a notorious scene all the more apparent.
Shot in a mockumentary form, it is based in the Dunder Mifflin Paper Company in Scranton, Pennsylvania and delves into the lives of the hilariously dysfunctional characters and their daily lives in the office.
Full of gags and laughter with a brilliant ensemble, the US version is an adaptation of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant’s British version. However, developed by Greg Daniels, it is inarguably more popular.
Eight years since the Emmy, Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe-winning show ended, fans still love revisiting the amusing premise for unbridled fun and amusement.
John Krasinski, who played the playful and fun-loving Jim Halpert- a salesman with a knack for practical jokes- on the show, recently revealed why he refused to shoot a particular scene in the show that ran from 2005 to 2013.
The scene would require Jim to cheat on his longtime sweetheart and wife, Pam, played by Fischer. Jim and Pam were the IT couple on the show and became an instant fan favourite due to their undeniable on-screen chemistry.
In the eighth season of the show, the creators wanted Jim to kiss a temporary office administrator who had defiled in Pam’s shoes while the latter was on maternity leave. After being informed of the plot development, Krasinski — who is usually pretty cooperative and relents to instructions —put his foot down and refused to shoot the scene. He said, “That’s the only time I remember putting my foot down.”
“I remember saying things that I never thought I’d say before, like, ‘I’m not going to shoot it’,” he continued.
Talking about Jim and Pam’s dynamics, Krasinski elaborated, “My feeling is there is a threshold with which you can push our audience. They are so dedicated. We have shown such great respect to them. But there’s a moment where if you push them too far, they’ll never come back. And I think that if you show Jim cheating, they’ll never come back.”
Although Greg Daniels finally caved in, he is still in favour of the idea. According to him, “that kind of worry was good in terms of the fans; engagement. I needed to worry them that maybe I was going to give them a bad ending so they were happy when they got a good ending,” he said.
However, it is indeed a blessing to see Jim and Pam have their happily-ever-after without any distractions or disruptions in terms of infidelity or the like.