‘The Office’: Why the ‘Basketball’ Episode Is Particularly Special to Jenna Fischer
Jenna Fischer has countless special memories from her time playing Pam Beesly in The Office. But filming the “Basketball” episode in Season 2 will go down as a particularly special day for the actor. Why? Because that’s the day she and Angela Kinsey became best friends.
Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey spent 24 hours on a bench together while filming ‘Basketball’
Fischer and Kinsey (who played Angela Martin in the series) were fond enough of each other during Season 1, but it wasn’t until filming “Basketball” in Season 2 that they got to know each other and realized they were so compatible. The shoot lasted two days, during which Fischer and Kinsey were seated next to each other on a bench. Between takes, they got to talking. By the time the episode wrapped, they’d told each other their “life story,” Fischer told People in Feb. 2021.
“We were leaving the warehouse and we were so giddy,” she said “We had this really fun friendship. You don’t expect to make a friendship like this when you’re older.”
Steve Carell on Fischer and Kinsey’s fast friendship
After filming, Fischer and Kinsey headed to their cars, terribly excited by their new friendship. Who walks up behind them but Steve Carell.
“We had to walk through this big parking lot, and it was at night,” Kinsey told the site. “Like schoolgirls, we linked arms and started doing Schlemiel and Schlimazel from Laverne & Shirley and Steve was walking up behind us. We were so embarrassed and we were laughing. Steve was like, ‘No matter what happens, this is what you’ll take with you. This.’ And he pointed at the two of us. He was so right.”
Ever since “Basketball,” Fischer and Kinsey have been best friends.
“Jenna is my life anchor because it’s like, the world doesn’t make sense until I can bounce it off her, whatever happens,” said Kinsey. “The big things, the small things. Once I tell it to her, I’m at peace with it, or I can navigate it.”
Fischer credits the strength and tenure of their friendship to good “listening.”
“You just need that person who makes you feel seen and heard,” she said. “That person who helps you process even little decisions when you’re standing in Target. Who do you call to tell you if you need another throw pillow or not, you know?”
After The Office, Fischer and Kinsey have continued to work together. They have a podcast called Office Ladies and a book coming out in 2022 called Office BFFs: Tales of The Office from Two Best Friends Who Were There.
“What’s great is that we can put our values into how we do business,” said Fischer. “And we have a shorthand because we’re best friends. So when Angela is blowing up my phone at 11:30 at night, or when I’m blowing up her phone at 7:15 in the morning because we get inspired at different times, we can text back, ‘Lady, I’m not listening to this until tomorrow. But fire away.'”
Their forthcoming book is said to have the most “personal” Office stories yet.
“The book is our opportunity to be even more personal and it’s also our opportunity to bring visuals to our stories,” said Fischer. “We journaled all through The Office about everything. So, we’re able to go back and track the journey of both our friendship and of our time on the show.”