When The Office producers Greg Daniels and Mike Schur were putting together Parks and Recreation in 2007, it was originally supposed to be a spin-off of The Office. They instead opted to abandon that plan and make the show its own thing, but the duo revealed some of the options they considered for an Office spin-off to TV Guide this week, and some of them are pretty crazy. Here are six ideas they thought about and then discarded:
A comedy inspired by the 1970s PBS documentary An American Family, which followed the upper-middle class Loud family of California. Daniels recalls, “We were going to do a mockumentary version of the Loud family, with [Ed] Helms’ Andy as the dad and Catherine Tate [who later joined The Office as Nellie Bertram] as the mom, living in a cul-de-sac somewhere in America. But in the intervening year, Modern Family came out, and they did it. ”
A show about Jim and Pam and their family was nixed. Schur explains, “In Season 4 you couldn’t take Jim and Pam from The Office.”
A show about Dwight on his beet farm (which they attempted five years later as the unsuccessful backdoor spin-off The Farm).
A show centered on Craig Robinson’s character Darryl.
A show about another Dunder-Mifflin branch.
Paul Lieberstein had a weird idea to link The Office to Parks and Rec. TV Guide writes, “On The Office, a copy machine breaks and throughout the episode a repairman tries to fix it. At the end of the episode, the machine is loaded on a truck and refurbished in a warehouse. Then the copier is loaded onto another truck and taken to Pawnee, Indiana, where it’s dropped off in theParks and Recreation office. In a twist on “spinoff” tradition, the character spun off would have been the copy machine. Producers briefly considered the idea, but ultimately Parks and Rec was its own creation.”