"Ed told me that he was a huge fan of the original BBC Office," Jenna Fischer said on the latest episode of her Office Ladies podcast

By Tim McGovern
May 20, 2020 10:04 PM
Andy Bernard
Ed Helms
| Credit: Colleen Hayes/NBCU

It's hard to imagine given how iconic both of these characters have become, but the man who eventually went on to play the Nard Dog originally auditioned to play Big Tuna.

Before The Office became a cultural phenomenon, Ed Helms, who was an avid fan of the British version of the series, auditioned for the role of Jim Halpert, who was eventually portrayed by John Krasinski.

On the most recent episode of Office Ladies, hosted by Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey (who played Pam and Angela respectively on the show), Fischer, 46, discusses how Helms, 46, landed the role of Andy Bernard.

"Ed told me that he was a huge fan of the original BBC Office, and he said not many people know this, but he originally auditioned in New York for the role of Jim," said Fischer, who along with Kinsey, 48, admitted that it was a fact they didn't know about their costar.

Fischer added that Helms "said he didn't get the role obviously, but he heard that Steve [Carell] got the role of Michael Scott and he was so excited because he had worked with Steve on The Daily Show.

"He was so excited for our American version of the show and he watched it and loved it, and somewhere near the end of season 2, he got a phone call to meet with Greg Daniels and Paul Lieberstein about a new character that they wanted to introduce in Season 3," Fischer continued.

Fischer added that Helms was only initially hired for eight episodes. "They thought that the Stamford storyline would not necessarily end in a merger, and that his character would be finished when Jim went back to Dunder Mifflin," Fischer said. "That was the plan, that Jim would eventually return. But this idea that the other Stamford characters would return wasn't quite in the works yet."

Thankfully for Helms, and fans of The Office, Andy Bernard became a staple of the show after Helms was offered to stay on for the rest of season 3 after the season's sixth episode.

John Krasinski
Jenna Fischer and John Krasinski in The Office

Office Ladies' revelation about Helms' audition to play the role of Jim comes one week after Krasinski, 40, revealed where the prankster's iconic teapot he gifted to Pam ended up.

During a conversation about props from set that the stars took home after the series wrapped in 2013, Krasinski casually shared that prop master Phil Shea sent him the teapot among some other items years later.

"Phil Shea is the reason I have anything," Krasinski told Fischer and Kinsey. "He sent me a box years, like three or four years later of my bag — yeah, my satchel — my nameplate, and the teapot, bro."

"You have the teapot!" the women exclaimed at the news.

"We have been wondering who has the teapot!" Kinsey said.

"Oh man, I thought you knew that," Krasinski said as both his costars couldn't help but continue to show their surprise.

THE OFFICE -- "Couples Discount" Episode 916 -- Pictured: Jenna Fischer as Pam Halpert
Jenna Fischer as Pam Beesly
| Credit: Byron Cohen/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty

In February, Fischer revealed that the note was really a personal message from Krasinski to her, "just saying what our time together on The Office meant to him."

“So I’m on camera, and I open up this note that John’s written me, and I just start crying, I just start bawling,” Fischer said, recalling the moment they filmed that scene in the series' final season. "The first take was probably not usable.”

“It was the sweetest note,” Fischer added. “And you know on camera, Pam says, ‘I’ll never say what it said, but just know it was perfect.' Well, I’ll never say what John wrote, but I will say, just know it was perfect.”

Krasinski said recently that he will also keep secret what he wrote to Fischer.

"I just wrote it and she read it the first time on camera. So it was a really personal thing just for her,” he explained on Live with Kelly and Ryan in March. “That’s just for her.”