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John Krasinski Knew Rainn Wilson Would Get The Part During The Office Auditions

"The Office" remains well-remembered for many reasons, though some elements of the show have taken an especially prominent place in pop culture. One of these is the feud-turned-friendship between Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) and Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson). The two tenured Dunder Mifflin Paper Company employees pull all kinds of pranks on each other, cooking up increasingly complicated schemes as the years go on. Arguably the biggest reason why their back-and-forth battle works so well is because of the efforts of Krasinski and Wilson, whose acting relationship got off to an unorthodox start.

During a 2005 Television Critics Association panel for "The Office," Krasinski and Wilson recalled the casting process for the show — one that involved extensive improv. They worked an improvised scene together, which saw Krasinski's Jim ask Wilson's Dwight to cover the phones for him while he ran to the bathroom. Krasinski began to get frustrated with Wilson for sitting in complete silence during the scene, though he quickly came around on his future co-star. "I just finally realized, 'Acting aside, this is very annoying.' And then I just said, 'You know what? He's going to get the part,'" Krasinski said (via Cheat Sheet).

Sure enough, Rainn Wilson was cast as Dwight, and John Krasinski landed the role of Jim, forming one of the sitcom world's most beloved comedic duos. The fact that they're still so revered to this day is a testament to their performances and the staying power of "The Office," which isn't lost on Wilson nor Krasinski.

Wilson and Krasinski are amazed by The Office's enduring popularity

Despite concluding in 2013, "The Office" remains as adored as ever. It's an undisputed streaming favorite, a merchandise-mover, and the source of countless quotes and references that have seeped their way into daily life. Not to mention, many of the show's cast members have maintained its relevance through podcasts dedicated to discussing the behind-the-scenes happenings that fans might not be privy to. This is all incredibly rare for any television show, hence why Rainn Wilson and John Krasinski are so amazed by it.

During a virtual interview in 2020, Wilson and Krasinski discussed the continued success of "The Office" and just how astounding it is. Krasinski even shared an anecdote where a four-year-old kid once approached him to share that it's his favorite show. "It's so amazing that a four-year-old said it was their favorite show and that he watches it with his whole family...Personally, I think it's the best thing I'll ever do in my career," he said, with Wilson agreeing and highlighting the positive impact "The Office" had on fans during the uncertain early days of the COVID-19 pandemic (via Participant on YouTube).

Though it's not perfect and hasn't exactly aged like wine — as evidenced by some of Michael Scott's (Steve Carell) poorly-aged quotes — "The Office" is undeniably a TV classic. It stands to reason that wouldn't have been possible without, among other aspects, the excellent comedic pairing of Rainn Wilson and John Krasinski.