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July 21, 2008

NBC wants both a Poehler show and an 'Office' spin-off

Poehler TCA -- NBC co-chair Ben Silverman says the network is not only doing a Greg Daniels comedy starring Amy Poehler, but is also still pursuing a separate "Office" spinoff.

"They came up with two ideas," Silverman says. "One that is totally a spinoff and planted in 'The Office' and may involved characters from 'The Office.' The other is a new concept that's set stylistically similar to 'The Office.' We decided to put all our energy into getting Amy. We literally pursued her the entire year and it is incredible we were able to land her. Amy will never appear in the world of 'The Office.' The show is not a spinoff. It does not come directly from the world of 'The Office.'"

That said, "We are also going to be continue to pursue the spinoff as well," Silverman says.

After the panel, Silverman says the spinoff will include a couple cast members from "The Office," as well as a couple new "Office" cast members who will be introduced into the original series for the sole purpose of shifting them to the new show. Silverman noted the spinoff won't be a workplace comedy per se. But otherwise, he kept mum on the concept.

Silverman added that he sees "The Office" as being a similar franchise to Saturday Night Live -- a group of players that can be expanded and plugged into various types of entertainment media.

Also, Poehler's show will no longer debut after the Super Bowl since the actresses' pregnancy has pushed back the show's start date. The network has not yet decided what will air in the slot, but it could still be some iteration of "The Office."

"We're trying to build a creative greenhouse around 'The Office,'" Silverman says.

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