‘The Office’: 1 Star Struggled to Find a Scene Partner in Acting Class

The Office fans know Andy Buckley as Dunder Mifflin’s Chief Financial Officer David Wallace. But before he joined the cast of the NBC comedy series, Buckley had to fall back in love with acting by taking a class. As a student, Buckley said no one wanted to be his scene partner. And the reason had everything to do with his wife.

The Office cast including Kate Flannery as Meredith Palmer, Oscar Nunez as Oscar Martinez, Creed Bratton as Creed Bratton, Andy Buckley as David Wallace, John Krasinski as Jim Halpert, Jenna Fischer as Pam Beesly Halpert, Ellie Kemper as Erin Hannon, Brian Baumgartner as Kevin Malone, Angela Kinsey as Angela Martin, Rainn Wilson as Dwight Schrute, Jake Lacy as Pete, Paul Lieberstein as Toby Flenderson, and Mark Proksch as Nate
‘The Office’ Cast | Chris Haston/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Andy Buckley’s career inspired ‘The Office’ character David Wallace

Several Office actors, including Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey, had office jobs before getting their big break on the show. Before becoming a full-time actor, Buckley was also working in a career that aligned with his character David Wallace on The Office. He was a wealth management adviser at Merrill Lynch.

Buckley studied acting before landing the role of The Office‘s David Wallace but was only being cast in small roles. After auditioning for The Office producer Mike Schur, Buckley was cast and ended up doing more than 30 episodes. He actually didn’t leave Merrill Lynch until the last season of the show. But today, Buckley is a full-time actor. 

Andy Buckley’s wife, Nancy Banks, is an acting coach

As Buckley explained on Brian Baumgartner’s podcast The Office Deep Dive, his wife, Nancy Banks, is an acting coach who helped him “fall back in love” with acting. Banks studied with acting coach Larry Moss for 10 years and then began her career as an acting teacher. 

According to her website, Banks has worked with actors including Chris Pine, Ben McKenzie, Margot Robbie, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jared Leto, Lily Collins, and more. “She’s been coaching Jennifer Aniston for five years,” Buckley told Boston Magazine in 2016. “She coached Jared Leto when he won his Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club. I’m her biggest cheerleader.” 

Buckley referred to his wife as “a heck of an acting coach” — a bonus for The Office‘s David Wallace, who went on to star in Jurassic World and Shameless, among other movies and TV shows. “If I need her help, I’ll certainly ask her,” he said. “It’s a secret little weapon. She’s certainly honest with her opinions.”

No one wanted to be Andy Buckley’s scene partner because he was ‘the teacher’s husband’

As Buckley shared with Baumgartner, The Office casting director Allison Jones reached out to him about playing Dunder Mifflin’s chief financial officer. At the time, Buckley’s wife had seven people in her class, including Channing Tatum. Buckley thought he could be the eighth student and make for even scene partners.

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But as Buckley reported, no one wanted to be his scene partner because he was Banks’ husband. “The two guys in the class were me and Channing Tatum,” Buckley said. “So nobody wanted to do scenes with me, the teacher’s husband.” 

Banks was working with Tatum before he became known for his roles in such films as Dear John and Magic Mike. According to Buckley, Tatum is “as lovely as anyone can be.”

You can catch Buckley as David Wallace when you stream The Office on Peacock. 

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