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The Office follows the lives of office employees working at the fictitious Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. Based on the British series of the same name, the comedy sitcom was a massive hit in the U.S. The show aired on NBC from 2005 to 2013, spanning a total of nine seasons. Many cast members found it hard to contain their laughter on set. But, one particular scene caused actors Rainn Wilson and John Krasinski to shut down film production.

The birthday party scene brought a lot of laughs

On the latest episode of “The Office Ladies” podcast, former co-stars Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey broke down each scene in the Season 5 episode titled “Lecture Circuit: Part 1.” The episode focused on Michael Scott (Steve Carell), Pam Beesley (Fischer), Kelly Kapoor (Mindy Kaling), Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson), and Jim Halpert (John Krasinski).

The first part starts with Michael and Pam going on a lecture tour. They travel to different Dunder Mifflin branches and explain the success of the Scranton branch. As Michael’s assistant, Pam mainly carries heavy boxes that contain a slew of props. 

Back at the office, Jim and Dwight become the new heads of the Party Planning Committee. After forgetting Kelly’s birthday, the two work together to plan a party. The task was pretty challenging for the two characters, as well as the actors.

“Jim and Dwight are going to try to apologize to Kelly. They want to make it up to her, and she does this great passive-aggressive thing that we know she doesn’t mean where she says, ‘You know what? All I want is for this to never happen to another person,’ Fischer explained in the podcast episode.

Kinsey shared that the scene was difficult for Wilson and Krasinski to film, saying, “They barely got through this scene. I don’t know how they got a useful take, and then they continue breaking throughout the whole rest of the script.”

‘The Office’ stars Rainn Wilson and John Krasinski couldn’t control their laughter

Rainn Wilson, and John Krasinski having a conversation in 'The Office' Season 9
Rainn Wilson, and John Krasinski | Chris Haston/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

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In the episode, Dwight decorates the conference room for Kelly’s birthday party. However, the room was a complete disaster. There were partially inflated brown and gray balloons scattered across the floor. In addition, there was a sign that read: “It is your birthday,” with a period at the end. Jim enters the room (while Angela stands in the doorway) and explains the numerous faults in the setup.

While watching the blooper reel, Fischer and Kinsey could tell both actors struggled to get through the scene. According to the podcast’s hosts, this was by far the funniest scene to film in The Office

“So I watched these two grown men disintegrate into tears of laughter. I don’t know how, again, we got any usable footage. They laughed so hard, Jenna, we had to pause,” Kinsey shared. 

Wilson recounted the moment in his book, The Bassoon King. Due to their uncontrollable laughter, he and Krasinski halted film production. The excerpt read: “The longest inappropriate laughter was doing the episode ‘Lecture Circuit’ when Dwight and Jim are put in charge of the Party Planning Committee, and Dwight hangs tiny brown and gray balloons and a banner that reads ‘It is your birthday.’”

“John and I literally could not stop laughing,” the passage continued. “We laughed until we cried. Production needed to be shut down for a 20-minute break while we gathered ourselves, and then we returned to film the scene.”

‘The Office’ actor Angela Kinsey says this line made the actors burst into laughter

Since Kinsey starred in the scene alongside Wilson and Krasinski, she revealed which line, in particular, made the actors burst into uncontrollable laughter. 

“I want to tell you, the part I remember them laughing at is Dwight says ‘Are you trying to hurt my feelings?’ and he throws the balloon, but it didn’t have enough weight to travel in the air and so the balloon with the sad streamer attached just kind of [falls] in the air. He was trying to throw it at John, and it just didn’t travel,” she said. “You can see Rainn starting to break because I think he broke every time.”

All nine seasons of The Office are streaming now on Peacock.