Q: What was Creed wearing over his shirt and tie? It looked like a disposable lab coat or something. | Kelly
Justin: Something Moroccan. A kaftan or djellaba or something.
Q: The set designers really went all out with the theme, how did you come up with the “Nights in Morocco” as well as long was the process of getting all the set decorations ready? | sorano916
Q: I loved the Moroccan theme! Phyllis in power is priceless. What other themes were possible options for their party when you were writing the episode? | Amanda
Justin: In ‘Goodbye, Toby,’ we had Phyllis plan an amazing party, but now we wanted to show that power has gone to her head. Thus the Moroccan theme (we talked about other options as well, but I won’t say what they were in case we ever decide to use them in the future).
Part of the reason we chose this one is that it seemed like the idea that would most aggravate Angela. We’ve spent four years watching Angela beat down Phyllis, and we wanted to do as much as possible in this episode to have you start actually feeling bad for Angela, so that you wanted her to finally stand up to Phyllis in the end.
Q: Who did Toby’s daughter’s voice on the phone? | Zac
Justin: Master impressionist and Man of a Thousand Voices Rich Little.
Q: How much time did it take Ed Helms to learn the sitar? And what song was he (trying) to play when Jim asked him to stop? | Laura
Q: Did a professional sitar player have to teach Ed Helms how to play? Or was his banjo experience easily transferred to this other (superior?) instrument? | Tiffany
Justin: Here’s yet another example of Ed Helms’ amazing talent. The sitar is a notoriously difficult instrument, so even though his playing of it didn’t have to be perfect, we wanted to make sure to give Ed enough time to learn the song. We gave him about a week (and no one to help him). But the song we gave him to learn was ‘Silent Night.’
Then, late the night before we shot that scene, we changed it to ‘Deck the Halls,’ and we couldn’t tell him about it until the next morning. When he was told about the change, he just shrugged, said no problem, spent about a minute-and-a-half figuring it out, and was ready to go.
I spent four years practicing oboe when I was a kid, and I still don’t think I could play a recognizable song.
That stuff he was playing in the annex was just random strumming.
Q: Was Ed singing “Ra da du da doo” instead of fa la la scripted, or was that improvised? Either way, totally hilarious! | floodedapartment
Justin: Improvised. I don’t think I could write that into a script even if I wanted to. How would you spell it? My keyboard doesn’t have a schwa key.
Q: Whose idea was the Princess Unicorn dolls? How did you go about making them? | Diapers Schrute
Justin: There was originally a whole different Dwight plot in the script (a holdover from last year’s Christmas episode), which we decided didn’t fit as well this year, so we had to scramble to find something else for him.
It was a group effort: Halsted Sullivan pitched the idea of having Dwight scalp the hot Christmas toy, Aaron Shure came up with Princess Unicorn (2nd option: Hank Grenade, a doll whose arms blow off when you throw him), Gene Stupnitsky thought of making Toby buy the black doll, and I took all the credit for the idea.
Then there was a lot of discussion about how to design them. Should she be just a princess with a horn or should she be more of a horned centaur, with the lower half of a horse? It got pretty contentious.