Got questions about ‘Dwight K. Schrute, (Acting) Manager’?

For the first time in OfficeTally history, we’ve got the episode star and writer on board to answer your questions!

That’s right, Rainn Wilson and Justin Spitzer have generously agreed to answer questions for this last episode Q&A of the season.

So post away! You’ve got until May 13, 10pm PT.

P.S. Your question has a better chance of being answered if it’s about this episode.


  1. Rainn, what’s your influence for Dwight? Is there a certain character of a film/show that you use or is it based off an actual person you know? Or is it based on the UK equivalent Gareth?

  2. Rainn,

    What was your first reaction when you found out you were going to have an episode where Dwight would be completely in charge? Did you have any say in how Dwight’s office would look?

  3. Rainn, Did you get to put in your input on how Dwight would behave when he finally becomes office manager? If so, what did you want Dwight to do that the writers hadn’t thought about?

  4. Rainn, how would you compare Dwight’s previous experience as manager (The Job) with this recent one?

  5. Rainn,

    Where has Dwight’s maintenance worker Nate been? It’s been awhile since we’ve seen him. Also, was it fun leading a conference room meeting? And what kind of a doll was the one you adjusted on the desk in the opening credits, which was hilarious by the way?

  6. Not directly related to this episode, but what’s Gabe’s role on the show? Early in this season, he seemed to frighten Michael’s authority, but as the season has gone on, it seems his role as an authoritative figure in the office has diminished? For example, he was completely sucking up to D’angelo in “The Inner Circle,” like he had no authority.

  7. Hi Rainn and Justin!
    Rainn, is there anything you’d like to see Dwight do that he hasn’t yet? Also, do you ever feel like you’re “bringing” Dwight into other characters you play?

    Justin, as a writer on one of the funniest shows on television, what do YOU find funny?

  8. The Office is BACK! Truly enjoyed tonight’s episode. It was like was like old times. I laughed out loud many times!

    Will we find out who the permanent manager will be before the end of the season finale?

  9. To Justin,
    A) What are the chances Creed and Hank get more airtime next season?
    B) For “Goodbye Michael”, what was the writing like for it? Was everyone tossing in ideas, such as all the past episode references?
    To Rainn,
    What has been your favourite Dwight episode/moment and why?

  10. Fantastic episode.
    I would like to know where you would like to see the show going in the next upcoming season?
    What stories have we not seen yet?

  11. We have heard so much about the season 7 finale episode. But most of what we heard is about finding the new manager and all the guest stars.
    What else can we look forward to? like with smaller story arcs?

  12. Andy was shown in a very Dwight-esque short sleeve shirt and tie. Was there a subplot that got cut involving Andy wanting to mold his appearance to Dwight’s since Dwight was now (acting) manager? Andy has always been a suck up.

  13. How did you come with with the gun idea. The whole thing was hilarious, from the actual gun shot to Toby being excited about filling out the forms and everyone blackmailing Dwight.

  14. Forget Jim/Pam, Andy/Erin, Michael/Holly. Dwight and Angela is the greatest love of all time! Date Night teased about a possible reunion. Any chance this might happen??

  15. Loved the episode! So many questions!

    Why did the writers choose to have Dwight take over as acting manager – were other possible characters discussed? Were you worried that people would compare it to The Job?

    Whose idea was it to do the different endings to the intro, including Dwight’s Samurai doll?

  16. Hey guys,

    Fantastic episode! How have the cast and writers responded to the change in dynamic since Steve left? There have been some really great scenes featuring the entire ensemble the past few episodes like the gunshot tonight.

  17. I loved the part about the copy codes. We have the same problem at my work (people sharing codes, loud beeping). What was the inspiration behind this? I thought it was so spot on.

  18. To Justin, Rainn: It’s not about this episode, but I’m sure many TallyHeads are wondering: Will David Wallace appear in Season 8? We never got to see him in the Season 7 episodes he was billed to appear in (Threat Level Midnight, Goodbye Michael). Will we get to see more of him in the future to make up for it? We miss him!

  19. Hi Justin!
    I feel like when one of the original writers writes an episode, It is way better. For example, Goodbye Michael, Michael’s last Dundies and this episode have all been amazing. How do you decide who writes the episode? I wish you, Paul, Greg, or Mindy would write every one!

  20. Justin, what was it like writing the first Carell-less episode of the series to rely only on the main ensemble of the show (and not including a guest like Will Ferrell taking a large focus of the episode)? Was there any pressure?

  21. Could you please tell me if that was a real piranha in the tank, and if so, did it require special animal expert supervision? I’ve heard that all potentially dangerous animals require trained guardians, but I don’t know if that applies to fish.

    Thank you in advance for answering my question.

  22. Rainn and Justin, has there ever been any discussion of a spin off series with the character Dwight? There are so many layers to his character and I think it would be an interesting show.

  23. What happened to Jo’s Great Danes? They weren’t the dogs shown in this episode. Is there a story behind that?

  24. Rainn —

    Episodes like this come along every once in a while where you really get to be emotional with your character, and you do such a good job of portraying Dwight, his allegiance to the company, and his amazing reverence towards the Regional Manager position, even if he’s not the one who gets to fill it.

    To Rainn and Justin —

    The beginning of this episode really reminded me of Dwight’s role in Season 3’s “The Job.” Were there any references in drafts of the script to Dwight’s past experiences as commander of the office, such as Schrute Bucks? I noticed Dwight’s lofted desk dream finally came true!

  25. Rainn-Having obviously known your character for seven years, did you add anything to the episode that you thought Dwight would have in the office, for example, the American flag, the desk or the gun/holster or were these all the writer’s ideas?

  26. Who painted the portrait of Dwight and for how much can I have it above my fire place?

  27. To either Rainn or Justin:

    Is Honk Schrute anything like Mose, will we ever get to see him in a future episode & if so, will he be played by a writer? Thanks for another awesome episode!

  28. Was it hard to make the episode not like the season 3 finale when Michael Scott thought he would get a job at corporate and selected Dwight as Manager?

  29. Great Ep! Did Dwight retire Schrute Bucks after his last stint as manager?

    And secondly my husband and I are having a debate…Was Andy wearing a short sleeve dress shirt to try to suck up to Dwight?

  30. Rainn & Justin, the file cabinet/Kevin Malone mounting massage may be the most awkwardly funniest moment since Michael spanked his nephew! Did this scene go totally by the script, or was there some improving going on there Rainn?

  31. Justin & Rainn, is there any hope for Dwight’s love life? Angela seemed turned on by the pledge of allegiance…or was the gun a sudden turnoff? Also, will Andy’s hearing be good for the finale?

  32. how was it to climb on Brian like that? You, Brian, Oscar and Angela must’ve laughed a lot, right?

  33. One of the funniest episodes I have ever, ever seen. Rainn, you melted my face from laughing so hard. That being said, is “DeAngelo” gone for good?

    Keep up the amazing work!! So grateful for people like you bringing laughter in a dim world!

  34. I think you should have a new boss come in every week….that would be fun to watch and wonder who the “star” boss would be each week! Just a thought….

  35. Was Dwight’s line “If you ruin this, I will burn this office to the ground” a callback to “I will burn Utica to the ground” from Branch Wars?

  36. I’ve seen a lot of people asking if Andy’s short-sleeved dress shirt was a way of sucking up to Dwight, but since the Andy/Erin dynamic was a major subplot of the episode, I was wondering if Andy was kind of a mirror of Season 2 Jim? He was wearing a blue shirt with a black tie, and when he left Erin’s desk, he did the same kind of drumming on it that Jim used to with Pam.

    Thanks, Rainn and Justin, for a great episode and for taking the time to answer fan questions!

  37. Guys, really enjoyed the episode. Was it shot while Steve was still around, or did you just film it in the past couple weeks?

  38. A Few Questions:

    Gabe seems to be painfully attached to Erin, is there any hope for some type of closure for him or will he continue to sabotage Erin’s future relationships?

    What happened to Jo’s big dogs? I love the new ones though! :)

    Is there a purpose for the elephant optical illusion being taped to the wall by Phyllis’ desk? I never noticed it before this episode.

    Did Oscar actually film the back massage scene on his blackberry?

    Lastly, were there any rejected ideas for Jim to make Dwight do other than jazz hands and shagadelic baby?

  39. justin & rainn, would I be insane to imagine an office where tim heidecker is boss? I love dwight as acting manager, actually, but we know that can’t last…right? Last night’s episode quickly jumped onto my top 5 favorites, by the way.

  40. Rainn – What did it feel like sitting behind the desk in Michael’s old office? It was done before for the finale of Season 3, but this time Steve wasn’t there and neither was Michael. Did memories flash through your head of the numerous times you and Steve had scenes in Michael’s office?

    I just also wanted to comment that your show is my favorite and helped me through one of the hardest parts of my life, it was the only thing that made me laugh in those tough times. :)

    Thanks Again!!!

  41. Who got to keep that painting of Dwight the boss from last night’s Ep??

  42. During the Dwight/Kevin massage scene, didn’t everyone just want to scream out “THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID”? Was it written that way, but not actually written as a TWSS joke due to Michael’s absence? I was waiting for it because it was so obvious. I know if Michael was still around, he would’ve jumped on that opportunity.

  43. Just want to say Congrats to Justin for all his great work on the show. It’s not every day the guy who played your dad in a high school production of All My Sons writes for one of the best shows on TV. Go Pascack Hills!

  44. how did you come up with the crazy long-ass title of the episode? Were there other titles suggested?

  45. Rainn, are you like dwight in real life? :)

    And didn’t Erin used to have brown hair? She and Andy should hook up

  46. Justin, great episode! Ok, so when Mindy writes an episode, she always tries to make sure that she has her certain signature elements written in each one of her episodes, like Dwight playing the flute, etc. I’ve noticed that your episodes usual mention religion or make some kind of religious or anti-religious statement. Would you consider adding these types of lines your signature on an episode? I thought it was funny to have that insight on Gabe and Oscar with the flag salute.

    Rainn, were you asked to pose for that painting? Or was that just more of the genius of the props department?

    Also, what was the table read like for this episode? No Steve Carell, no special guests, except for “Jo”… Did it give a good vibe for what’s ahead next season?

  47. To Justin: How far ahead have the writers planned next season or are you waiting to see reaction of season finale?

  48. Who named Dwight’s great-uncle “Honk”? Were there other names in consideration?

  49. Would you say Michael Schur is more “Mose” than “Michael” nowadays?

  50. Why not a single tiny reference for Michael? I know the show must go on… but still specially from Dwight… Michael was his best friend… I love last night episode tho!it was really funny!!!

  51. Will Creed be the “acting manager” for very long? And my favorite part was when Dwight shot the gun and Andy grabbed his ear! I really thought Dwight had shot him and I couldn’t stop laughing when Andy exclaimed how loud that was!

  52. Hi Dwight/Rainn,

    After you told Mose on the phone that you received the promotion and he finished screaming (best opening ever!), how did you two celebrate? Did you have a party at Schrute Farms?

    Thank you,
    Jonathan Polan

  53. Tell us about the accoutrements of Dwight’s office that we may have missed. Fake fireplace? Desk cupholders? What else?

  54. Hi!

    In the last episode Mose managed a telephone but in a different episode Dwight told I think it was Jim that Mose never could manage a phone. How did he?

    And thanks for all the episodes.

    Greetings from (communist) Sweden!

  55. My question is for Rainn’s character, Dwight (one of TV’s all-time best characters, if you ask me):

    Dwight, now that you’ve been enlightened on what a girly gun you’ve been carrying, do you plan on more substantial firearm purchase in the near future?

  56. Hello. I have noticed that Ed Helms (Andy) has been wearing some brightly colored red pants in recent episodes of The Office, including last night’s episode. I am concerned about this. I have but one question. Why? Why the red pants? They don’t match or look cool.

    Thank you,

    Christian Papperello

  57. Tell us more about the Kevin massage scene, it was hilarious! Whose idea was it for Dwight to climb up the file cabinets? How did Brian withstand the pressure of Rainn pushing on his back? Did Oscar and Angela break?

  58. I wonder if in the future you may include Michael’s character in cameos, even if it’s via phone call during an episode? Surely Steve would be up for sending in a quick recording and it would definitely add to continuity.

  59. Hey! I loved the conference room scene with Ed and Zach. Was Zach actually crying?

  60. Gabe’s “I wasn’t crying” face when leaving the break room was both hilarious and mortifying. How many takes?


    If given the chance, I don’t think Dwight would really fire Jim. Do you?

  61. How do you feel that the various characters have changed from last season to this season?

    Any hints about what we can expect from Creed as acting manager? I’m excited!

    Lastly, anyone want a blueberry slurpee pouch from the freezer?

  62. Whose idea was it to start changing the opening sequence when Michael used to place his Dundie? I really like how that’s been changing as the managers have…I’m anxious who is going to be putting the last one down :D

  63. Rainn,
    Did you get to choose the decorations within your version of the manager office?

  64. Is that really Michael Schur screaming into the phone in the cold open? His name appears in the closing credits

  65. First of all, great episode! Dwight’s my favorite character, so I loved to see him have the uncontrolled power he desired for once.

    I’m sure going into this episode felt like a field day for both the writers and the actors. After years of ‘what if’s’ we have finally been given a front-row seat to the question of “What would happen if Dwight was ACTUALLY put in charge for once?”

    Now for my question: All of the ideas used in this episode were hilarious. I’m sure some ideas needed to be cut or scrapped for the episode to fit within the 22-minute model. What were some of the ideas not used (due to money or time constraints) and why?

  66. Loved the episode, might be the funniest of the entire series. How many times do you guys plan on doing the opening shot next year? There was the original, then Goodbye Michael, where he updated the Dundies positioning, then Deangelo’s, then Dwight’s. Creed is my favorite random character, and I was wondering if he will get a new opening?

  67. Was the fist actually a rebellion group….what do you think would have happened if it was written for Andy to be shot in the ear?

  68. Who came up with the idea that Oscar would refuse to say “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance? It was so perfect for the character.

    Did you ever consider putting Jim in charge for an episode or two?

    Did Creed agree to become the boss because it would earn him his third – and final – chair?

    What’s the story behind the sumo wrestler and the globe that Creed brought with him to the boss’s office?

  69. Thanks for a great episode, Rainn and Justin! I’ve two questions. Firstly, where did you find all of the props for Dwight’s desk? They were hilarious! Secondly, I thought that while Dwight was the manager he would have some contact with Michael. Perhaps to get some advice, or at least brag to him that he landed the job. Why did you make the decision not to reference (in say a talking head) that Dwight had told Michael about the job? Maybe because Dwight was mad at Michael for leaving? Now I’m just speculating…

    Again, I loved the episode, and it did a great job of incorporating all of the characters. Dwight was actually a better boss than I ever would have believed, he was actually kind of nice to them! I especially loved Rainn pouting outside of his former office when Jo took the title away from him. Great acting!

  70. Can we expect to see any familiar faces trying out for the regional manager position, other than ones that work in the office? **cough cough David Wallace cough cough**

  71. Is it acceptable to ask about deleted scenes? If so, I’m anxious for insight on that second clip regarding Jordan’s giddy reaction to Jim.

  72. Regarding the deleted scene with Jim and Jordan, you’re not planning on messing with Jim and Pam, are you? After what Gilmore Girls pulled with Luke and Lorelai in season 6/7 I don’t think I could stand being jerked around about the main couple of a show again…

  73. This episode had quite a few “laugh out loud” moments. What scene was most difficult to film, and how many takes did it take to get one without laughing?

  74. This episode was one of the funniest of the entire series, I think. It seemed like there was a certain heightened energy among the cast. Was there a post-Steve intensity that was going on? What was the mood like creating this episode?

  75. How many takes did it take to get through trying to lead the conference room meeting like Michael would have?

  76. Everyone absolutely adores Creed however,I feel like he never gets used. The end of this episode was great, the way you made him acting manager was hilarious. I just wanted to know if you guys are going to start using background characters more now that Steve is gone?

  77. Hey Rainn, Dwight has undergone some major changes over the years, from a gullible,naive eager-beaver, to a more sensible and wiser character.
    What do you credit for this change? Did Dwight’s original personality run out of good material? Which version of Dwight do you like acting out better?

  78. Hey Rainn, how involved were you in the b-storylines, especially the Andy/Erin/Gabe triangle?

    And Justin, I am on to you and the other writers. Something is planned for Kelly. That “Recycle Here” sign wasn’t there for nothing! What’s her mystery story?

  79. Is Deangelo going to come out of his coma and be featured in the season 7 finale? Also, Rainn, did you and the cast have fun with the foosball table in the office before you became acting manager? :)

  80. For Justin:

    What happened to Jo’s Great Danes?
    Was it hard to write an episode that did not include Michael in it?
    Whose idea was it to make Creed the acting manager?

    For Rainn:

    How difficult was it to do the scene when you were giving Kevin a back massage?
    Did you have any input into what Dwight should have in his office?
    Do you think Dwight would have made a good permanent manager? I was really hoping he would have been the permanent manager when Michael left.

    Thanks for answering our questions Justin and Rainn!

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