Late last month, word leaked out that James Spader — easily the best guest star during “The Office’s” late-season parade of applicants to fill Steve Carell’s shoes — was in negotiations to join the NBC show full-time next season. And now EW has confirmed through sources that a deal has been reached:
NBC is set to announce the hire, adding a new well-known actor to the ensemble series that saw the departure of its biggest star, Steve Carell, this season, and will also say goodbye to recurring performer Kathy Bates as well. Bates played the company’s CEO last season, though Spader’s character is expected to have a greater presence on the show.
As great as Steve Carell was throughout much of “The Office’s” run, Spader’s arrival changes the show from “Eh, I’ll watch it if I’m not busy” to “must watch” for me. Hell, I watched “Boston Legal” just for Spader, and that show BLEW. I’d happily watch James Spader read the Yellow Pages — by the time he got to “Anderson” he’d have a naked woman he didn’t know turning the pages for him.