James Spader in Talks to Join The Office
...but not for the position you think
By Tim Karan,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 24, 2011 4:40 PM CDT
James Spader is reportedly in talks to join the cast of NBC's "The Office."   (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
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(Newser) – He may not end up with the job he interviewed for, but that doesn't mean he won't be working at Dunder-Mifflin. James Spader—whose character, Robert California, appeared in the season finale of The Office as a potential replacement for Steve Carell's Michael Scott—is in talks with NBC to become a regular cast member. His character would replace Kathy Bates' as CEO of Dunder-Mifflin, says Hollywood Reporter.

Bates is leaving to focus on her legal drama, Harry's Law, so the plan is to introduce California as the successor to Scott in the season premiere, but quickly give him a corporate job. That would leave the regional manager position vacant once again. British comedian Catherine Tate—another guest star in the finale—is reportedly a favorite of producers, and series regulars Rainn Wilson, Ed Helms, and Craig Robinson have all expressed interest in seeing their characters move up. Executive producer Ricky Gervais pushed for Will Arnett, but the Arrested Development star just started on his own NBC series, Up All Night.