It seems that we have official word that one person is already leaving the aging NBC comedy The Office. James Spader has decided not to return next season, if the show is renewed. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Spader was only signed for one season and has opted not to return as Robert California.
“James always wanted this to be a one-year arc, and he now leaves us having created one of the most enigmatic and dynamic characters in television,” adds Paul Lieberstein, who plays Toby Flenderson. “He’s been a great friend to me and the show, helping us successfully transition into the post-Michael Scott years, and I’m grateful for that.”
Originally, Spader was only suppose to play two scenes in the season finale of the series, but after making it his own, he was quickly asked to return and become part of the series during this season. There is still some doubt as to who will be returning for a ninth season, if they choose to renew it.
Head writer Daniel Chun landed himself an overall deal with rival ABC Studios in late February, while fellow Office writer and star Mindy Kaling’s script was ordered to pilot and is expected to leave to focus on that show if it gets picked up to series. Not to mention that many of the cast’s current deals end this year. I am sure this isn’t the last of the departure news coming from the series.