Will Ferrell and Steve Carell scored comic gold as co-stars in the 2006 film Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. Now, the pair are reuniting on the small screen as Ferrell joins the cast of The Office for a four-episode guest stint. Will the results be equally hilarious?
Following in the footsteps of other notable season seven guest stars – including The Office creator Ricky Gervais who reprised his role as the original clueless office manager David Brent – Ferrell lends a heavy dose of star power to Steve Carell’s final season on the show.
In related Office news: Ferrell isn’t the only big name helping the show close out its season: Ray Romano, James Spader and Doctor Who‘s Catherine Tate will all be guest starring in the hour-long season finale.
We covered the announcement of Ferrell joining The Office back in January, but now NBC has released a short promotional video showing the actor in action as the new manager of Dunder Mifflin’s Scranton office. Check out the video below.
It’s not much of a promo video, but if you’re a Ferrell fan, there’s definitely enough in there to pique your interest. Above all else, it just looks like Ferrell and Carell are having a lot of time together, which usually means great comedy.
While Will Ferrell is appearing in four episodes, the actor will not be joining the show full time as some fans may have hoped. However, Arrested Development star Will Arnett (who also returned as a guest on NBC’s 30 Rock this season) is still rumored as the lead candidate to replace Carell for the long term. THR reports that Romano, Spader and Tate are also potential candidates to replace Carell – an idea that will likely be explored in the finale episode (I’m seeing a job interview premise forming here…).
In my opinion, while he could never truly replace the lovable doofus that is Michael Scott, Will Arnett would actually make a very good permanent replacement for Steve Carell. He’s a skilled comic actor with a (mostly) successful track record and he’s perfected the type of obnoxiousness necessary to sustain the dynamic of the show. However, Spader would be a great dark horse pick if the showrunners are going for maximum weirdness/awkwardness in regards to the comedic tone of the show. See the movie Secretary for a good example.
In reality, however, it’s unlikely that The Office will carry on much longer no matter who replaces Steve Carell. It’s rare for any show to last seven seasons, and, while The Office had a great run, I suspect Carell’s departure will hasten the show’s demise. Maybe if he had stayed on, it could have made it to 9 or 10 seasons (Seinfeld, MASH, and Cheers territory), but that simply wasn’t meant to be.
That being said, if NBC can squeeze out one or two more quality seasons of the show with someone else at the lead, more power to them. I’m a big Will Arnett fan, and I think that if he does become a series regular, it has the potential to be very funny. Do any of you Office-loving ranters agree?
The Office airs Thursdays @ 9/8c on NBC; The hour-long finale will air on May 19th.