Paul: A lot of what you guys were asking was, you know, should we continue after Steve Carell leaves. And the answer was only clear when we said our cast is amazing. And, you know, we don’t need anybody else. People want to watch our cast. We still want to write for our cast. And so think that although maybe, you know, batted around different views at time, we were never really considering changing the focus on the show to anyone else but our people.
Reporter 3: Ed, can you talk about what it’s like to work with James Spader when his character is a man of few words.
Paul: Would you call him that?
Ed: James Spader has played a lot of very creepy and odd characters throughout his long and wonderful career. James Spader the man could not be more different from those guys. He’s a wonderful sort of benevolent and cheerful guy. And so that is a fantastic energy to have on set. And it’s wonderful. It’s a kind of fun new energy for us all to respond to. Now his character of course, Robert California, is different than that. Robert California is a kind of aggressively confident person who seems to take a lot of pleasure in exerting his power and that is a really crazy energy because it’s so new to Dunder Mifflin and it’s not something that Andy Bernard is particularly well equipped to deal with and that is exactly why it is so fun.
Reporter 3: Now springing off of the last question from the last reporter, how did the process go for you in terms of taking the new job? Like did you know ahead of time?
Ed: I knew about three or four weeks before we started shooting. That’s when the news sort of broke internally. And Paul and I had lunch actually and that’s where I learned of the news.
Reporter 3: I wanted to know what are Andy’s plans in terms of what to do with Dwight now that you’re the manager and you guys had a checkered past.
Ed: Well, let’s just say the checkered past carries over to a checkered present. And, you know, Dwight is someone who responds very well to a firm hand of leadership, which Andy is still sort of searching for a little bit. But I’m really excited that in that first episode we started to just see the very first inklings of a backbone in Andy. And that I’m really excited about because it sort of makes Andy’s leadership more plausible in a way and also kind of shows you a lot of where Andy still has to go and where he has to travel. And that – Dwight provides a constant friction for that.
Reporter 4: Were the actors lobbying on behalf of their characters to get the managerial position and having your character getting it, was that a way to capitalize on your future film career?
Ed: I’ve always really trusted the creative judgment of the show creators, Greg Daniels and Paul Lieberstein and felt like they’ve gotten us so far. And there was a lot of internal sort of wondering and questioning what was next, who might be the next boss.I think it’s a testament to this cast and the dignity of everyone involved that we all sort of took a little bit of a back seat to the creative considerations upstairs. And we’re sort of eager to support whatever decision came down.