‘The Office’: Amy Poehler Almost Played the Most-Hated Character on the Series

by Jeremy Spirogis
Melora Hardin

The Office is a present that options a variety of flawed characters. Characters like Angela and Dwight are uptight and conflict with coworkers, and the protagonist of the present, Michael Scott, is boorish and lacks any social abilities.

However, the present additionally portrays their private struggles and redeeming qualities in a method that makes these characters endearing to viewers. Jan Levinson, then again, is a personality that followers of The Office like to hate.

Her relationship to Michael Scott borders on abusive, she preys on her younger assistants, and she or he’s prepared to make use of her company energy to crush a warehouse union. Her unlikability makes her character extremely compelling and enjoyable to look at, although, and actress Melora Hardin’s skillful appearing provides so much to Jan’s character.

But Melora Hardin wasn’t the one actress that auditioned for the position of Jan Levinson. And you is perhaps shocked to seek out out which actress practically obtained this position.

The character’s conception

Melora Hardin
Melora Hardin as Jan Levinson | Chris Haston/NBCU Photo Bank

RELATED: ‘The Office’: This Accident in 1 Scene Proves How Great Steve Carell and Melora Hardin Are as Michael and Jan

Jan Levinson was launched within the pilot episode of The Office. From the beginning, she has a considerably antagonistic position: she works in company, and involves the eponymous workplace to inform Michael Scott that Dunder-Mifflin is downsizing and that Michael should hearth anyone.

She’s chilly {and professional}, and it doesn’t look like she has a lot sympathy for Michael’s tough scenario. However, the writers noticed a variety of promise in her characters, and after filming the pilot the manufacturing staff determined that Jan and Michael can be an fascinating romance to discover on the present.

This romance proved to be a significant success for the present. The relationship was extraordinarily poisonous and uncomfortable, however the depth of the dynamic between the 2 characters drew viewers in and made them really feel each intrigued and horrified.

It even led to an episode thought-about top-of-the-line in all the sequence: the “Dinner Party” episode. Jan wasn’t in each episode of the present, however her character added so much to The Office.

Amy Poehler virtually performed Jan

Amy PoehlerAmy Poehler
Amy Poehler | Michael Tran/FilmMagic

Melora Hardin’s portrayal of Jan Levinson was an awesome success. However, there have been different actresses who have been thought-about for the position of Jan Levinson.

One actress that just about landed the position was SNL alum Amy Poehler. The producers critically thought-about selecting Poehler to play Jan, though they ultimately determined that Hardin was a greater match. But this doesn’t imply that they forgot about Amy Poehler.

Instead, they determined to maintain Poehler in thoughts for an additional, an analogous sitcom that may additionally air on NBC.

Amy Poehler joined ‘Parks and Recreation’

NBC initially meant Parks and Recreation to be a spin-off sequence to The Office. Like The Office, Parks and Recreation is a mockumentary office comedy. Eventually, NBC determined the 2 exhibits wouldn’t be associated to one another past having related kinds. But when selecting an actress to play the lead position of Leslie Knope, they went again to their auditions for The Office to provide Amy Poehler this position.

Ironically sufficient, Leslie Knope is sort of the other of Jan Levinson. While Jan Levinson is stony and cynical, Leslie Knope is chipper, upbeat, and cares deeply about her work and her workers. Perhaps the producers at NBC felt that Poehler can be higher as a much less disagreeable character, since Poehler is extremely plausible because the infectiously enthusiastic Deputy Director of Pawnee, Indiana’s Parks and Recreation division.

Maybe it was destiny that gave Melora Hardin the position of Jan Levinson and Amy Poehler the position of Leslie Knope. Both characters are iconic, and Poehler’s portrayal of Leslie Knope ended up incomes her 5 separate Emmy nominations. Both actresses are extremely gifted, and it’s nice that viewers have been in a position to see them in these long-running roles.

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