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The Office Episode That Was Changed Because Of A Jenna Fischer Injury

It's easy to understand why The Office has lasted the test of time. A sitcom about a paper company in Scranton, Pennsylvania was instantly relatable to anyone who has ever had a boring office job, and the central romance between Jim (John Krasinski) and Pam (Jenna Fischer) kept viewers coming back one week after the next to finally see if they would end up together. 

The dreams of fans finally came true in one of the best episodes of The Office ever, "Fun Run." After Michael Scott (Steve Carell) hits Meredith (Kate Flannery) with his car, he organizes a company fun run to help with her medical bills. In the background of the episode, Jim and Pam play coy about their newfound relationship, denying they're dating to all of their coworkers, but as viewers soon see, they are indeed together. It all leads to one of the sweetest moments in the show's history when Jim and Pam decide to walk the entirety of the fun run, holding hands along the way. 

As it turns out, the reason the two walk together hand-in-hand was a result of some issues behind the scenes. If it wasn't for a nasty injury, then it may not have happened at all. 

Jenna Fischer fell down some stairs a few months prior to filming "Fun Run"

On the December 9, 2020 episode of the podcast Office Ladies, Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey (who played Angela Martin on the series) talk about "Fun Run" in-depth, including the surprising reason why Jim and Pam walk while all the other characters run. As it turns out, Fischer suffered a serious injury in May 2007, stating, "I fell down a set of stairs in New York City, and I fractured four bones in my back. And I was not allowed to run, so the writers had to write a reason for me to only walk through this episode."

She later explains the injury in a little more detail, saying how her and the cast were in the city to promote The Office. Part of this involved them going to a club to rub shoulders with advertisers, and the club had a steep, marble staircase. In a series of events that would feel right at home on The Office, Fischer slipped on the stairs and ended up throwing the daiquiri she was holding in her face in the process. It also resulted in her making an unexpected trip to the hospital. 

Luckily, she says that there were no long-term side effects to the injury and that it was able to heal over time, but when dealing with a back injury, the last thing you want to do is push it. That's why even a few months after the incident, her doctor still didn't want her running in the episode, which filmed in August. Luckily for viewers, the creative team managed to find the perfect way around it. 

You can watch "Fun Run" and the rest of The Office before it leaves Netflix on January 1, 2021.