A new book has revealed a scrapped storyline for the beloved television series "The Office" that could have dramatically altered the relationship between one of the small screen's classic couples.
Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) and Pam Beesly (Jenna Fischer) stole the hearts of audiences with their romantic relationship, but there was almost an irredeemable rift between the leading lovebirds included in the original script, according to the book "Welcome to Dunder Mifflin: The Ultimate Oral History of The Office," which was revealed by the New York Post.
It was initially scripted that Jim was going to kiss Pam's office replacement in a hotel room while Pam was home on maternity leave, but Krasinski was strongly opposed to the potential plotline. His resistance was revealed in an oral history, which was compiled by Brian Baumgartner, who played Kevin Malone in the show, for the book.
"That’s the only time I remember putting my foot down … I remember saying things that I never thought I’d say before, like, 'I’m not going to shoot it,'" Krasinski said, according to the Post. Krasinski raised the issue with creator Greg Daniels.
"My feeling is there is a threshold with which you can push our audience," he continued. "They are so dedicated. We have shown such great respect to them. But there’s a moment where if you push them too far, they’ll never come back. And I think that if you show Jim cheating, they’ll never come back."
Daniels was eventually persuaded to alter the storyline. He did however defend his decision to create tension between Jim and Pam towards the end of the series. The pair were at odds with each other and Pam found herself being consoled by Brian the boom guy, played by Chris Diamantopoulos, after fights with Jim in the ninth and final season.
"I feel like that kind of worry was good in terms of the fans’ engagement. I think they knew what was coming," Daniels said. "They were very comfortable with the show they were getting, and I needed to worry them that maybe I was going to give them a bad ending so they were happy when they got a good ending."
In the book, the onscreen couple also took accountability for making "The Office" crew work so much overtime to perfect their roles.
"Nothing brought production to a screeching halt like a big Jim-Pam scene," Baumgartner said. "I would be like, 'Please get me out of here before they film this or it’s going to be seven hours.'"
Fischer admitted that what Baumgartner said was true.
"John and I would fight hard for what we believed, and we were usually on the same page," she said of what it took to bring their romance alive for the cameras. "We had a singular mind when it came to Jim and Pam."
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