As rumored, James Spader has joined the Office cast as a replacement for Kathy Bates' character, the CEO of Dunder Mifflin's parent company. Spader, who first appeared in the season finale as an applicant for Michael Scott's manager position, "will reprise his role as Robert California, this über-salesman that has a power to convince and manipulate, like a high-class weirdo Jedi warrior," says exec producer (and cast member) Paul Lieberstein.
"He'll have been hired over the summer as the new manager, but within hours, got himself promoted. Within days, he took over the company," Lieberstein continues in a statement. "James has an energy that is completely his own, and The Office has no tools for dealing with this guy. We're thrilled he's joining our cast." So Steve Carell's shoes still need to be filled—and PopEater says the rumor is that someone will be hired from within. (Read more The Office stories.)