James Spader Won't Stay at The Office

NEW YORK - DECEMBER 06: Actor James Spader attends the after party for the Broadway opening of "Race" at Redeye Grill on December 6, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** James Spader Photo: Neilson Barnard/2009 Getty Images

Robert California is leaving the building. After a well-received cameo in last season's finale of The Office, James Spader signed on at the beginning of this season as a high-profile new regular ... well, semi-regular, since his contract only called for him to appear in fifteen episodes. Today, showrunner Paul Lieberstein told Variety that Spader won't be back next year, and that he had always planned on a single-season arc. Still, with the future of the show still in question -- Mindy Kaling is developing a Fox pilot, and Rainn Wilson appears headed for an Office spin-off -- it looks like Dunder Mufflin should gear up for a round of layoffs if The Office gets its expected ninth season.