We all knew the season finale of The Office was going to be a big deal, but now NBC is pulling out all the stops by coaxing funnyman Jim Carrey into making a guest appearance.
Carrey is set to play one of several potential candidates to fill the shoes of departing office manager Michael Scott (Steve Carell). The list of other ‘potentials’ reads like a telethon’s dream. Will Arnett, Ricky Gervais, Ray Romano, Catherine Tate (Gulliver’s Travels, Doctor Who) and James Spader will join Will Ferrell in contending for the role of Scranton, PA head honcho.
Ferrell has already made one appearance in his four-episode stint as Deangelo Vickers (wonder how long he’s been holding on to that one). While it seemed that Mr. Vickers was all but handed the position, we can rest assured The Office has plenty more resumes to go through – the reveal of the new office boss won’t be made until the final episode of the season.
The addition of Carrey shouldn't come as much of a surprise - since he's been all over the place as of late. 2009 saw two very different films released by the comedian, and neither achieved the level of success Carrey is used to delivering. The mo-cap feature adaptation of A Christmas Carol from director Robert Zemeckis appeared to have all the trappings of a holiday classic and box office juggernaut, but ultimately underwhelmed critically and financially. At the same time, his darkly comedic love story I Love You Phillip Morris with Ewan McGregor was in the midst of being unceremoniously shuffled by its distributor from limited theatrical run, to indefinite postponement, back to a limited (very limited) theatrical release. After a run like that, a little time in the spotlight might be exactly what Carrey is craving – especially with Mr. Popper’s Penguins right around the corner.
So far, the ever-increasing build-up to who will inherit Carell’s throne is akin to finding out who shot J.R. While the speculation on Dallas included pretty much the entire cast, the short list on The Office is even shorter - once you look closely. Sure, the likes of Gervais and Ferrell would be a dream come true for any Office fan, but realistically speaking, it’s not going to happen. The same goes for the rest of the list. Spader and Tate will make nice appearances, and everyone will guffaw at Romano and Carrey’s antics, but the moniker of ‘guest star’ is a very appropriate one for them all.
At the onset, Arnett, who is funny, charismatic and has a bit of a cult following from his Arrested Development days, seemed like the logical choice. He even won an endorsement for the role from Gervais himself. Logic, however, seems to have hit a snag ever since the actor was cast as Christina Applegate’s husband in her as-yet-untitled sitcom for the peacock network.
Sure, the conspiracy theorists among us would call that a major bluff – insisting it is nothing but a smokescreen to keep people guessing as to Arnett’s involvement on The Office. Well, guess what? It worked.
Fans will just have to wait and see who will be the new boss on The Office. Until then, they can bide their time by saying goodbye to Steve Carell. His last episode is April 28.
The Office airs Thursday nights at @9pm on NBC
Source: Entertainment Weekly