The Office may have left Netflix officially, but the series is still very fond of millions of fans.
The fabulous style of writing and vibrant characters undoubtedly helped “The Office” become such an iconic series.
But, as one of the best comedies in TV history, the charismatic ensemble cast really cemented the series.
While the cast of The Office does not lack talent, there are some actors who really stand out from the crowd. Steve Carell, who played the iconic Michael Scott, was one of those actors, of course.
Carell lent his phenomenal comedic talents and improvisational ability to the series for seven seasons, producing one of the most amusing and paradoxical characters in television. Michael, though an ignorant, bumbling fool sometimes, was also endearing, and fans rooted for him through his many gaffes.
In “The Office”, Philip Seymour Hoffman turned down a starring role.
Of course, in the role of Michael Scott today, it is hard to imagine someone other than Carell, but the role was in high demand when Carell booked the part.
Dozens of actors, including Owen Wilson and Stephen Colbert, applied for the part.
But before any of the other actors had a chance to audition for the part, the show offered the role directly to two actors. Indiewire notes that the part of Michael was offered to both Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Giamatti, but both opted to turn it down, according to Andy Green’s book The Office: The Untold Story of the Greatest Sitcom of the 2000s.
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While a part in “The Office,” was turned down by Giamatti and Hoffman, the cast still had over 30 actors considering them for the role. They agreed, eventually, to go with Carell.
“Carell had the “sort of generic Americana appeal that most TV stars had at the time,” according to an interview with The Guardian. Furthermore, the cast liked the way Carell portrayed the role.
Although still offering him a lot of emotional depth, the actor leaned into Michael’s goofier part. This helped the authors, of course, to get very imaginative in coming up with ludicrous circumstances that Michael would have to endure.
Why was Steve Carell the best cast for Michael Scott?
Inherently, Steve [Carell] brings so much reality and emotion to everything he plays that we were able to write for him the most extreme comedy scenarios, such as stepping on a George Foreman grill and declaring himself disabled or falling in love with a catalog chair model and asking The Office to help him locate her,”Steve [Carell] inherently brings so much truth and emotion to everything he plays that we were able to write the most extreme comedy scenarios for him, like stepping on a George Foreman grill and declaring himself disabled or falling in love with a chair model from a catalog and asking The Office to help him find her” (who was a performer and a writer for The Office). “In someone else’s hands, that could sink the character, but Steve had a three-dimensionality that let him wriggle out of any situation.”
Clearly, Carell was the best person for the role. While it is fascinating to think about what could have been added to the job by Hofmann or Giamatti, Carell is what made it what The Office was.
If anyone else had been charged with bringing Michael Scott to life, the series obviously would not have been the same.