Question: Are there any finale spoilers that you might be able to tell us about. I know it’s a one-hour one this year.
Greg Daniels: Yeah, it may be even bigger than the one-hour one. We’re trying to get more time and the network’s being very creative about scraping some more time together for us without having us start the finale in a weird time that will cause half the audience to miss the first ten minutes or something. So, we’ll see how we’re doing, but we’re still hopeful to get slightly more than an hour too.
Question: Going back to the Jim and Pam stuff, the last scene of last week’s episode seemed to hint at, they’re going to be okay. Can you talk a little bit about how things play out over the last few episodes for them?
John Krasinski: Yeah. I think the last episode for me, the one that just aired, I remember Greg saying very smartly, we have to give the audience something, as far as trying to see light at the end of the tunnel, but I don’t think it necessarily answers all the questions as to how they’ll solve it. I think that, as always with Jim and Pam, there’s a romantic hope that everything will be okay at the end of that episode.
And now, there’s going to have to be a little bit more brass tacks, if you will, as far as getting to understand how this will work, because Jim needs to figure out what he wants to do with Philly and Pam needs to figure out how she feels about Jim doing this for her. And so, it’s an interesting thing that I think Greg was really smart to say, like we can’t just hold this out to the last episode and have people almost getting terrified to the point where they wouldn’t enjoy the finale.
Greg Daniels: Yeah, we’re going to end up with 203 or 204 episodes, and my hope is that people will treat the last several episodes as the finale and not force us to do everything in the last episode. We didn’t want there to be such anxiety over Jim and Pam that you could think of nothing else during the last episode.
John Krasinski: I’m not going to lie and say I didn’t laugh though, thinking about people being so terrified that they just sort of blacked out for the first part of the finale.
Question: Greg, the finale takes place a few months after the documentary has aired, was that idea influenced at all by Ricky’s office Christmas special where it sort of looked at David Brent and what he was trying to do afterward?
Greg Daniels: Well, probably. We didn’t start off with that as the finale. This year, the plan was to air the documentary in Episode 17, and as we got closer and closer to that point, writers and I would have furious debates and we ended up having promos air for the documentary at that point. And we got the best of what we were looking for, in terms of the characters seeing old footage and everything.
But, we thought it would be difficult to have a bunch of episodes after it had aired, and so we ended up pushing it off and off, and then it ended up being more close to the British show, in a much more compressed time period, and after attempting to beat that ending a number of different ways. I think we kind of ended up very similarly.