Jenna Fischer Improvised a Line in ‘The Office’ to Pay Homage to ‘When Harry Met Sally…’
There are many cute moments between Jim (John Krasinski) and Pam (Jenna Fischer.) But there is one that had an improvised moment inspired by When Harry Met Sally… Fischer revealed how she gave a nod to her favorite movie in a scene between the characters on The Office.
‘The Office’ cast would sometimes improvise and break while filming
The comedy’s scripts were already filled with jokes. But the actors often found a way to push things even further by stretching out jokes or improvising.
Fischer talked about a scene where Michael (Steve Carell) did the robot on Office Ladies. Carell decided to do the dance for a long time.
“I remember shooting that,” she said. “So in the script, that was not supposed to go on that long. That was supposed to be like a quick little thing but Steve really dragged it out and that was an example I think of some of his just brilliant comedic timing.” Angela Kinsey said Carell was little “sadistic” by trying to get his fellow actors to break.
There are certain scenes were actors felt free to improvise. That included the ones focused on party planning.
The actors often improvised in the party planning committee scenes
Angela, Pam, and Phyllis (Phyllis Smith) were part of the party planning committee. They were seen meeting multiple times throughout the show and sometimes their meetings got intense.
Kinsey and Fischer talked about what it was like to film these scenes on the Office Ladies. In the episode, “Michael’s Birthday” Angela asks Pam if they were boring her sarcastically because she yawned. “Well you know there’s been a deleted scene I improvised a line where I said ‘not Phyllis,'” said Fischer.
“We used to laugh a lot when we did these PPC scenes,” she added. Kinsey later said, “We would improvise the most boring conversations on purpose.”
Fischer said Greg Daniels loved the party committee and the mundane conversations they would have in their meetings. There is another scene in the episode where the actress added her own spin to the script.
Jenna Fischer improvised a line inspired by the movie
“Michael’s Birthday” shows a scene of Jim and Pam going to the store together. Jim dares her to say something over the intercom and she does.
Pam takes the microphone and says “Luke, this is your father!” A fan asked the podcast hosts if this was improvised or scripted.
“So the Luke line was scripted. However, I did improvise a little bit. So when I say ‘I’m sorry’ into the mic that was my fun idea and it was a little nod to the movie, When Harry Met Sally….,” Fischer said.
She mentioned the moment where Harry’s ex-wife walks up and he stops singing when he’s doing karaoke with Sally. Sally thinks it’s because of her voice but Harry tells her that he sees Helen so she says “Helen?!” into the mic.
“I always thought that was such a funny bit so I thought I’m gonna say ‘I’m sorry’ in the mic really loudly,” Fischer explained. The romantic comedy is actually one of the actress’ favorite movies.