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Here's Why Jenna Fischer Had To Film Her Firing Over 30 Times On The Office

When "The Office" first hit screens in 2005, we could have never predicted what a massive hit it would become. Inspired by the British series of the same name, the show took the world by storm, changing the sitcom landscape forever. The pilot episode of "The Office" was largely a shot-by-shot remake of the original British version of the show, down to the iconic stapler-in-Jello prank, while later episodes of Season 1 show how the series' comedy was adapted for an American audience. That first episode, too, gave us insight into the cringe-worthy-humor we'd come to expect from "The Office." Notably, audiences will remember Michael Scott (Steve Carrell) pretending to fire Pam Beesly (Jenna Fischer) to show his new temp Ryan (BJ Novak) what a tough boss he is. 

Pam, of course, was devastated to hear she was losing her job, and promptly burst into tears. Michael eventually tells her he's joking, and Pam is outraged. This scene is memorable for many reasons, largely because it's the first time audiences see the insane mind of Michael Scott in action. On her "Office Ladies" podcast with Angela Kinsey, Jenna Fischer shared her memories of filming the scene, and just how challenging it was for her as an actor.

The scene required a huge emotional range

According to Jenna Fischer in the first episode of "Office Ladies," she had to shoot the fake firing scene over 30 times, which she says is probably the most takes she ever needed for a scene on "The Office." The actor also revealed that this was her audition scene, yet when it came to shoot it for the pilot, she struggled. We can certainly understand the difficulty, given that the scene requires a range of emotions — surprise, sadness, and anger. However, Fischer eventually nails it, and her talent for playing off Steve Carrell's Michael Scott only grows more as the show progresses.

Surprisingly, Angela Kinsey reveals that she initially auditioned for the role of Pam, and also performed the scene, but praises the "brilliant" vulnerability Fischer brought to Pam. The success of "The Office" is no doubt largely due to its incredible casting, and on our many rewatches, we are constantly impressed with the humor and heart each actor brings to their roles.