Who would have thought that a documentary-style series about the everyday lives of workers in a paper company would be such a hit? But it was. The Office premiered in 2005 and was renewed for a total of 9 seasons, concluding in 2013. The American sitcom was made under NBC and was redesigned for an American audience from the original which is a BBC produced British series of the same name.
In the series, a camera crew follows the workers of a fictional Dunder Mifflin Paper Company based in Scranton, Pennsylvania, covering their relationships with each other in the office. The Office premiered on March 24, 2005, on NBC and after its first season received mix reviews. However, four more seasons later and everybody was raving about the show. Its nine-season constituted 201 seasons with the final episode airing on May 16, 2013.
The show brings together many stars and improv actors such as Steve Carell, Jenna Fischer, John Krasinski, Rainn Wilson, Angela Kinsey, and so many others. The look of the ensemble cast continued to change over the course of every season with the likes of Steve Carell and B. J. Novak moving from main roles to guest appearances by the season finale.
So who are The Office ensemble cast and characters and where are they now?
The Office Cast and Characters: Where Are They Now?
Steve Carell – Michael Scott
One of the biggest names on the ensemble cast is Steve Carell who portrays Michael Scott, the regional manager of the Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. One of Michael’s stand out characteristics is his often misunderstood and misinterpreted sense of humor which too often landed him on the bad side of his employees and superiors. He was the central character of the series until season 7 when he left to start his own paper company. He made guest appearances on the ninth and final season bringing his involvement to a total of 139 episodes.
Steve Carell has been around since 1991 and has been very busy since he left The Office in 2011. He has voiced Gru in the Despicable Me movies since 2010. In 2018, he appeared in three movies: Beautiful Voice, Vice, and Welcome to Marwen. Carell received his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2016.
Rainn Wilson – Dwight Schrute
Wilson is one out only seven of the members of the ensemble cast that were involved in all 188 episodes of the show. He plays Dwight Schrute who is portrayed to be a high ranking salesman and assistant to Steve Carrell’s character, Michael Scott. Dwight is also an avid businessman who loves the American justice system and has interests in martial arts. Although he has always wanted the managerial position at Dunder Mifflin, Schrute clearly lacks the requisite people skills and intelligence to fulfill the role as exemplified by his rivalry with Jim Halpert. He is eventually offered the regional managership on a permanent basis in the season finale.
Rainn Wilson has been around since the late 1990s. He has been in a myriad of television and movie projects as well as theatre productions. Apart from his excellent portrayal on The Office which earned him three Emmy nominations, the actor, director, writer, and producer has been in over 50 television projects. Most recently, he has been on Star Trek: Discovery (2017), Smurfs: The Lost Village (2017); and The Meg (2018).
John Krasinski – Jim Halpert
Krasinski’s character, Jim Halpert is a calm, composed and intelligent sales rep at the Scranton branch. He later becomes an assistant regional manager, co-manager, and then regional manager for a brief time. Halpert starts dating and later marries and starts a family with Pam Beesly, a receptionist in the office, starting in the fourth season. His job as a sales rep is terminated in the final season.
John Krasinski’s acting career has only gone upward since The Office. He has received a plethora of nominations and awards – over 20 of them – from different organizations and award ceremonies like the Primetime Emmy Awards, Teen Choice Awards, and the Screen Actors Guild Awards. Some of his popular movies include Dreamgirls (2006); It’s Complicated (2009); The Muppets (2011); and most recently A Quiet Place, and Jack Ryan in 2018. Time also featured John on their 2018 list of 100 Most Influential People in the World.
Jenna Fischer – Pam Beesly
Besides being the love interest of Jim Halpert, Jenna’s character started out as an introverted, simple looking and easy-going receptionist at the paper company. Although she maintains her amiable nature, Pam begins to learn to be more assertive as her roles change in the company from the receptionist to saleswoman and then to office administrator.
Jenna Fischer started acting 1998 with the movie Channel 493. She had already been involved in about 13 tv projects including Cold Case (2004) and LolliLove (2005). Besides The Office, Fischer has also been on a series of projects with cast members from the series like Krasinski and Carell, with the latter also writing the introduction to her first published work The Actor’s Life: A Survival Guide. The book was published in 2017.
B. J. Novak – Ryan Howard
Ryan Howard is hired as a temp in the opening episode of the series. From the start. he is clearly unfulfilled by his job at Dunder Mifflin and doesn’t like his relationship with his boss Michael Scott. This contempt for his boss later spreads to other employees as he is hired on a permanent basis. He begins to become more nonchalant and divisive, and egotistic as the series unfolds. At a point in season 4, he gets arrested for committing fraud and misleading shareholders by publishing fictitious sales numbers.
Novak is also a co-writer, director, and co-executive producer of the show. He played Howard for 168 episodes of its nine-season run. A graduate of Harvard, Novak first tried his hands at comedy and was discovered by Greg Daniels who would later rope him in as part of the cast of the series. Novak is good friends with other members of the ensemble cast especially John Krasinski who was his high school buddy. Novak has been in other movies such as Unacompanied Minors (2006); The Internship (2013); The Amazing Spiderman 2 (2014); and The Founder (2016).
In 2013, he signed a publishing deal under which he has released three books. His latest writing The Alphabet Book With No Pictures was published in 2017.
Angela Kinsey – Angela Martin
Another all-episode character, Angela Martin. Unlike the other characters before Angela on this list, she is not a reimagining of any equivalent from the British sitcom as she is an original of the American adaptation. She is easily the coldest character in the series. Angela’s lack of a sense of humor and contempt for her co-workers is glaringly visible throughout the show. She is especially very opposed to any flirtation, show of emotion or slacking of any type in the office, which is why she puts the likes of Pam Beesly and Jim Halpert at the top of her hate list because of their office romance. She is the head of accounting for Dunder Mifflin’s Scranton branch.
Kinsey has worked with some of the cast of The Office on other movie sets. She worked alongside B. J. Novak on the set of the 2007 film License to Wed. Angela once worked as an intern on NBC’s Late Night with Conan O’Brien and took improvisation classes when she moved to Los Angeles. After the series came to a close, Angela put her improved acting portfolio to good use. The actress has since then been on a number of movies, with eight of them (3 films and 4 television appearances) coming in 2018.
Phyllis Smith – Phyllis Vance
Like Angela Kinsey, Phyllis Smith plays a character with the same first name as her real one. Phyllis Vance is a sweet woman with a motherly nature and appearance. She is a saleswoman at the company and loves the occasional girl talk with almost everyone but Angela Martin. She attended high school with her boss Michael Smith but the two are never on good terms as Michael seizes almost every opportunity to berate her.
Phyllis Smith hasn’t been in a lot of movies. Besides The Office, her best-known work came in 2015 when she did the voice role for Sadness, a character in the animated movie Inside Out. Since 2016, she has had a recurring role as Betty Broderick-Allen on Netflix’s The OA.
Mindy Kaling – Kelly Kapoor
Kelly Kapoor is the office chatterbox and can be described as a teenager in an adult body. She is often seen throughout the show talking about mostly trivial issues that would excite a younger demographic. Kapoor is an Indian American who is the product of an arranged marriage along with three other sisters.
Mindy Kaling played Kapoor in a recurring role for the first two seasons before she was moved up to season regular in the third installment and made guest showings in the season finale. Since the show she has grown an enviable portfolio with roles in Inside Out (2015), alongside Phyllis Smith; Wreck-It Ralph (2012); A Wrinkle In Time (2018) alongside Oprah Winfrey; and Ocean’s 8 (2018) alongside Sandra Bullock, Anne Hathaway, and Rihanna.
How Can You Watch It Online?
Since the unconventional approach of the series was such a massive hit, it is not inconceivable that there are a myriad of ways and platforms to binge-watch the series online.
The most popular online streaming alternatives are Netflix, Amazon Prime, DirecTV, and on NBC’s website. There are other platforms to consider like Sidereel, TV, Daily Motion, Stan, Hotstar, and Lightbox. However, on some of these platforms, you may only get access to clips and not the full episodes. For some others like Netflix, DirecTV, and Stan, you will encounter a paywall before you can have access to the movie, although you will also most likely be gifted a free-trial period of anywhere from 7 days to 30 days.