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Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Comedy is all casting

The casting of "The Office" is more than half the value of the series. They're all just slightly off-centre, which probably helps explain why they've ended up in this dead-end paper company. For instance, I think Ricky Gervais pointed out that Steve Carell is perfect as Michael Scott because he's "almost handsome".

I've just been reading a profile of the casting director of this and many other comedies and it helps explains why Andy Buckley is so good as Dunder-Mifflin's CFO David Wallace. Wallace doesn't have any funny lines. His job is to turn up at moments of corporate jeopardy and play the heavy father. He tries to be stern but he can't quite bring himself to do it. He is completely believable.

It turns out that Buckley was a jobbing actor who gave it up to work in the finance industry. The casting director Allison Jones bumped into him after he had switched careers, took his card and this led to him getting the part, which he did alongside his day job. The reason he looks like a serious businessman is because that's what he is.