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I'm Jenna Fischer, and I'm Angela Kinsey. We were on the office together and we're best friends and now we're doing the ultimate Office Watch podcast just for you. Each week we will break down an episode of the office and give exclusive behind the scenes stories that only two people who were there can tell you where the office ladies. Angela. We are so excited today, you guys, we're going to the beach today, we're going to play some beach games.


Yes, Season three, Episode twenty two, written by Jen Salada and Greg Daniels, directed by Harold Ramis. It's beach games.


We have so much to talk about. I kind of feel like we just got to we just got to get to it. We should dive in because I took very diligent notes and I think you do in real life.


We'll get to that. All right. Here's a summary. Michael is invited to interview for a job opening at corporate.


Certain that he's a lock for the job. He takes his employees to the beach at Lake Scranton and holds a series of challenges to determine his successor. At the end of the day, Michael sets up a cold walk as a final challenge. Pam does the cold walk and summons up the courage to tell Jim and the whole office her real feelings.


Oh, man. That was that was so tough to watch. It was beautiful.


Jenna Pam broke my heart in this episode. Yeah. I had not seen this episode since it aired, and I it shocked me.


Yes, I did it and I was still shocked, it's funny, like the way the brain works where you're like, wait, I did all that. That's crazy. That's kind of cool. Yeah.


So fastback number one, Angela, our beach games is set on, unlike Scranton. You. Yeah, obviously we didn't go to the real Lake Scranton, but I did want to just talk a little bit about it.


Oh, let's hear it.


Well, Lake Scranton is actually a reservoir and it was built with a dam in the early nineteen hundreds. The dam was built by William Walker Scranton and the body of water it created was originally called the Bernt Bridge Reservoir, although the public calls it Lake Scranton.


Well, Jenna, you and I have both been to Scranton. And one of the times that I went, they drove me around Lake Scranton and it is so pretty, so pretty. There is a running track around the real Lake Scranton, and it's absolutely gorgeous. But I did look up a few facts about it.


And yeah, swimming is not permitted.


Boating is not permitted, but canoeing and kayaking is allowed. I wonder why you can't swim in it like I get the no motor, right? That's right. Like, I think that's sort of really cool.


But I wonder why the. No swimming. I don't know. Hmm. I'm not sure we're intrigued. Scranton, write us tell us why you can't swim in your lake. Well, this leads me to fast.


Fact number two, I brought up all these facts about Lake Scranton because we had a fan question from Sophia B.. Aaron W, Dana D.. Marion B and Fabi, where was the beach that you filmed this episode?


Was it a long commute and how many days did you film at that location? Well, I will tell you tell us. I know I remember one or two things, but I bet you got all the details, so let's hear it. Well, I reached out to Kansas P.D. and here's what he told me. We filmed at the beach at the Hanson Dam Recreation Center in Sylmar. We shot there for four days and nights. Well, you mentioned that you've been to the real Lake Scranton.


I've been to this real Hanson Dam Recreation Center outside of us filming.


You had. Yes. Because there is this museum, this children's museum called the Discovery Cube. That's right nearby. And when you go through this area, there's also like a and equestrian center. There's an aquatic center, there's a playground. Because, lady, the place that they put us to film this episode. Yeah. Was like you had I had no idea all this stuff was there.


My memory of where we filmed was it was like a chemical pond runoff from a dam where I was like, are we breathing in fumes? It was really like growth. They maybe the only place they let you film is in this like weird, kinky corner of this where a bottle of water goes.


Yeah, because this recreation center is actually really nice.


But here's something I found out to the lake where we filmed is filled with circulated drinking water.


What. Yeah, circulate a drinking water in it offers fishing and public boating. Oh, my gosh. So when Ed is out there floating in the water, he was in some recycled drinking water.


Oh, well, that's good to know. All these years, I worried for him that he was going to get, like, some kind of weird rash.


All right, well, let's move on to fast fact number three. So like we said earlier, this was written by both Greg Daniels and Jen Salata and we reached out to Jen Salada and she sent us audio clips. She sent us so many. She's so gracious. We're going to sprinkle them throughout. But here she has one for us right now.


Yes. She is going to tell us a little bit about the inspiration for this episode and what it was like to write a script with Greg.


I think the inspiration for this episode was just Survivor. I think it was Greg's idea. And I remember all of us talking about Survivor being a perfect way for Michael Scott to pick his successor.


I mean, what other way would this man use to try to pick somebody who could run a brand? It just seemed like a no brainer for Michael Scott to do it this way. And then we tried to sit down and write the whole thing together and we were like, this isn't going to work.


So we divided it up. We can't remember exactly how we did it. I think sometimes with Paul, when I read a script with Paul, I do the first half. You do the second or vice versa.


And with Craig, I think we didn't do cleanly divide it up that way. I think just he did some of the scenes. I did others. And I do remember that the Pam speech was mostly Greg. And I think that is such a beautiful part of the episode. And the Pam Arc preexisted the idea of the Beach Games episode. So I think some of the ideas from that speech were in his notes. But I love that part. It is one of my favorite parts, if not my favorite part of the episode.


So credit to Greg for that part for sure. But we both wrote a bunch of it. I just don't think we clearly divided it up. Well, and I remember Greg talking to me about this Pam arc of her finding her voice. Yeah. And he planted this idea a few episodes ago and we sprinkled it in. And so I just love this idea that he'd been maybe writing down little notes about what Pam will finally say when she says something.


And I remember getting the script for this episode and just being so excited as an actor, there was just so much to chew on.


I mean, I thought that it was just beautifully done, really just Pam's whole journey this season about even her sending the wrong beer back, you know what I mean?


And yeah, and just having these moments where she stood up for herself and spoke her truth. And it all builds to this one moment and it's just so well done.


When I was watching this, I was marveling at what a well-written episode this was. Yes. Well, maybe we should take a quick break and then come back and break down this episode.


I can't wait, Jenna. We have so much to talk about. I know we've been trading a lot of texts about this one.


All right, so this episode starts with this very funny cold open, it is Dwight and Michael there in Michael's office and Michael's convinced that he's sick. You guys, he's convinced there are scrolling through a website. It's like WebMD or something, trying to figure out what he is sick from. Dwight's very concerned. Yes.


Pam has the talking head where she explains that this happens about 40 times a year. Michael is sick and has no symptoms. Yes.


Well, Jim left us a really great audio clip about this, about the inspiration for this cold open. Sam, can you play that?


Greg and I wrote the episode together, and it was really fun. I remember being really curious, what is Greg's process going to be like? Because writing scripts, it was such a solitary part of what we did. And so I was always wondering, like, what are other writers like when they go off to write a script? It became quickly obvious that his process at the beginning was like mine, which is like every other writer I've ever met, which is there's a fair amount of procrastinating right away before you have to get into the hard work, it's figuring out what you want to eat and sharpening your pencils.


It's figuring out the temperature of the room. And for both of us, we started focusing on elements like what was wrong, how we weren't feeling. Well, like my ear was bothering him and he wasn't feeling super well at the time. And so we went on WebMD and we tried to diagnose ourselves and each other.


And they used to have a little body where you could put a point to the part of the body that hurt and that was bothering you. And so he diagnosed me with an ear infection or at least inner ear congestion, and he ended up putting some oil from the kitchen that we found in my ear. It turns out you can do this. It is it is a home remedy. And it helped it helped my ear. And I think we diagnosed him with walking pneumonia.


So we did this right when we were sent off to write the Beach Games episode. And it ended up becoming our cold open because we were probably looking for a cold open. And we're like, what about what we're doing right now?


There is so much about that audio clip that I love.


I hear it's so relatable. It's like whenever you sit down to do something and it doesn't matter what it is. I mean, there was this writing assignment, but all the different ways you procrastinate before you get to that thing.


Yes. Well, Angela, you and I are working on a project that we can't say exactly what it is, but it involves quite a bit of writing.


And I every time I sit down to write, I will write one sentence and then I will get up and get a snack, and then I'll come back and write a sentence and then I'll be like, I need more coffee. Mm hmm.


Yeah, it's like the procrastination. I loved that she shared that because I think my perception is always that creativity comes easy to people who are successful. I always think, like, it must pour out of them and it is such a slog. So I loved hearing that. But then the other thing I loved was that their procrastination, it got turned into a story idea like it's worth it. Like all of that nonsense. It produced something. Well, right.


Well, I had a writing professor in college that used to always say, write what you know, write what you know and be honest. Oh, well, I just loved this this opening. And, you know, before they can really diagnose Michael, Pam walks in the office and says, David Wallace is on the phone. Yeah, it's very clear that David Wallace does not call very often.


No, it's a big deal. Well, Michael gets on the phone with him. Oh, my goodness. Michael, what are you doing?


Michael, the way Michael talks to his bosses are even when he goes to New York, to corporate, there is such a casualness to how he relates to them that is so not work appropriate.


It's so true. Well, we find out the reason that David Wallace is calling is because there is a job opening at corporate and he would like Michael to apply. I can't believe he still wants Michael to apply after this phone call. But I think Michael has a very, very good sales record and a good record of connecting with people out in the sales world. Yeah, he's a really good salesman.


Here's a little interesting tidbit, Jenna. There was a scene that was deleted right after this phone call of David Wallace and Michael.


David Wallace calls Jim and tells Jim the same thing. I saw that in the script and they chose not to use it.


They chose to reveal it later, that it's Jim calling, it's Jim being more proactive in his life. But there was a version where David calls Jim.


Yeah, I noticed that in the script because that scene on the beach with Jim and Karen calling David and kind of asking if they could go for the job as well. That was not in the original script. So that must have been something that they added later.


Well, I remember when we were at the beach, there were a few scenes that sort of happened on the fly. They were like kind of pitched in the moment. And that was one of them. Yeah.


So now it is beach day. And at two minutes, twenty eight seconds, you get a fantastic look at Michael's outfit.


He clearly bought everything he could at sandals in the gift shop.


He's got a tee shirt, he's got a hat, he has a necklace that he probably bought their little puka shell necklace.


He's really ready and he tells everyone they better go potty before they leave. I'm just like Michael. So ready to be a dad. You know, he just is bless his heart. And you get to see everybody in casual attire.


And I just loved it. Well, I noticed something about our wardrobe. What's that, do you see how many layers we all have on? Oh, well, that was for a reason.


Yeah, it was because we shot this episode in March and we knew that that location was going to be perfectly warm and lovely during the day. It turned out to be hot as f there was a heat wave.


There was this crazy freak March heat wave. It was 98 degrees. I wrote in my journal that it was 98 degrees our first day.


Yeah. But then when the sun went down, it was freezing cold. Yeah, we are in this valley. So it was like these really huge swings of temperature.


Yeah. So Wardrobe tried to give us layers to help take us between these two extreme temperatures. And I noticed when I was looking at everyone's beach attire, their layers.


Well, you know what, I notice this is really, really fun to me. Toby and Angela almost have on the same outfit what I did not notice.


They're both wearing these beige tops. They have huge beige floppy hats and like sort of like just like pants on. But like and they're also both obsessed with sunscreen, both of them. Well, I noticed that both Andy and Stanley are wearing a red polo shirt.


Oh, yeah. I did not catch that. But guess what? I did catch and I know it's your favorite moment of the day. Is it a new plant at reception?


Because we need a setting for this new plant alert. Three minutes, 32 seconds.


It is a red flowering plant. There are big red flowers on this plant.


OK, I'm sorry. I see that as a metaphor because Pam is going to bloom in this episode.


That is so good. Pam's going to flower. She's going to bloom. What we forgot to talk about how Michael has told Toby he can't come on the beach day.


Oh, that was so good. Toby's disappointment. He doesn't get to see you in a two piece. Jenna, I wrote.


How did you get through that scene without laughing? How did you do it?


Because when you were like, oh, thanks, I'm going to wear my two piece. It's so good, it's so funny. We also didn't mention and I'm tracking this, the Meridith Flash count. This is flash number two.


Yes, Meridith has that great talking head where she explains that she wore her bathing suit to work. Yeah. And she lifts her shirt to show you. And she's like, oh, shoot, it's in my purse. Michael has a special assignment for Pam on Beach Day, of course, because she needs an assignment. Yeah.


Michael tells her that she has to take notes all day on people's character, humor, charisma and the indefinable qualities that they possess, but not their hotness per say. I loved that line.


The yeah, I like you. She could add that if she wanted, but it's not 100 percent necessary, I guess. But he also doesn't tell her why she has to do this.


No, he he just needs to find out which of his employees has the skills to be a chicken with the head.


That's right. That makes sense. Wow. What? Well, let's see now.


The gang is all going to board the bus. Michael's got a big party bus to take everyone to the beach.


Yeah, Cretz got a boogie board. He's ready to go. Yeah, Kevin says he just wants to lay on the beach and eat hot dogs. It's literally all he's ever wanted.


Now, this buzz that we're all riding in, we really rode in that. That's how we got to the beach that day. But then the days after that, we drove ourselves.


Yes. That first day, though, they shuttled us from the stages. And the plan was that we would use the time to shoot the scene with Michael, but then we had extra time. Yeah. So we all started singing.


Well, listen, I watch the DVD commentary for this and I thought it was so sweet because Harold Ramis is on the DVD commentary and and Jen Salada was on it as well. And Jen was like, you know, Harold said I'd never been on a bus where we didn't sing.




He was like, everybody, when you get on a bus with people, you sing. Right? That was Harold Ramis being genius. And I do know two other songs we sang. Gena, do you remember what we sang? Tiny Dancer? Oh, yes.


And then we also sang Friends and we did the handclaps. I remember that. Yeah.


I didn't know all the words to that, so I just clapped.


Well, Angela, I have to say, I remember that vibe of us just singing our way to the beach that very first day. And then frankly, as we walked off the bus and got hit in the face with that 90 degree weather, I feel like you see that play out on our faces.


I felt the same thing in watching this, that shot. When we're walking across the beach, we're all carrying our stuff. Meredith is dragging a cooler. Do you know the shot I'm talking about? I took a photo of it because I think it's so amazing.


I took a screen grab that is all real like that struggle to drag that stuff across the beach. And it was hot. You guys have all been there. You've been to that beach where you had to park super far away and lug your stuff in the heat.


And all your enthusiasm of getting there is so quickly, like, oh, God, here we go.


Well, Angela, you mentioned a little bit about the challenges of this location, and Jen talked about that as well. So, Sam, will you play that audio clip number eight?


It was a super fun episode, but it was really challenging. I remember even the bathrooms weren't close to the location, so and there was closes. They could be, but we needed a golf cart. And so any time anybody has to go to the bathroom, there is a golf cart taking people up a hill. And I remember it was super hot and super cold all within the course of one day. There were heat lamps and heat weren't hand warmers.


And then it was really, really hot in the middle of the afternoon.


So everything about this episode was a challenge.


And I feel like we just in order to get everything great, it just took a long time.


Oh, yeah. It was slim pickings out there on the beach. I mean, we had just enough room to shoot. There was I mean, I remember us just being huddled under like a little pop up tent or something. Yeah.


I mean, when I was looking at the photos that I have, there's nothing out there. Once we were on the beach, we're sort of on our own because things couldn't be in the shot. They did get us like some lawn chairs. I have this great photo of Steve and I sitting next to each other clearly between a scene. And we're just like in lawn chairs, like just hanging out and talking. I just love it.


And also this week, Jonah, I brought my football like in real life. I had it in my car. And when they would have some setups to do in particular, like when when they were setting up the hot dogs and all that, I have these photos of us throwing the football on the beach.


We were having our own beach day.


So, yes, it was sort of like there weren't bathrooms nearby and it was hot. But we were also just making our own fun and we always did that. I felt like as a group we were really just kind of roll with it and make the best of it.


And I always loved that about our show. All right. Well, let's see, where are we? We've arrived. We're yanking our stuff down the beach. And Michael tells us it's time to start the fun timidities.


Such a great word. I want to use it.


It's like nifty fifties fun timidities. Like, imagine if I did that, like at a family reunion. I had everybody.


It's time for fun doing this.


I love it.


I know personally, you and I would both be excited.


We'd want to be on the fun Tiffani's like organizing group, the fun Tavernese Committee, the Fun Deputies Committee or the Committee to Plan for antipathies or what was wrong with my brain.


The Fun Devotees Organizing Group.


What Momma needs another cup of tea. Well, Michael tells everyone that they have to divide into teams. He picks the team leaders, quote unquote, randomly. They are Jim, Dwight, Andy and Stanley. These guys are clearly his top contenders for the job. And he makes them choose their tribes. Yes, but not pay them. And they cannot be included and can't be included in.


And also, these are the team names ready. Yes, we have Gryffindor, Voldemort, Blue and USA.


It's incredible. Yes. Well, I loved all of these Harry Potter references. You know, my son is right in that age range where we've got Harry Potter over here and we reached out to Jen about this.


You know, what's up with the Harry Potter thing? Yeah, I was so curious. I was like, was this like a inside joke in the writers room? And this is what Jen had to say. We had a bunch of Harry Potter fans in the writers room and even evolved to a situation where we had chopsticks hanging around the room from takeout as we ate a lot of our meals in the writers room.


And so one afternoon we decorated our chopsticks. While we were probably pitching stories and jokes, we each decorated chopsticks. And then we had we were pretending that they were Harry Potter ones and we would do spells on each other, just comedy spells.


But we even had one stands near the writers room door that were just little thumbtacks, you know, spread apart so that we would rest our ones on them. So everybody had their Harry Potter chopstick ones and our one stands.


And that sounds super dorky. And I believe it is what it was really fun.


Once again, what the writers were doing to procrastinate made it into a script.


Yeah, I feel like there's probably more of that than we will ever know. Yes, exactly.


All right. So it's seven minutes. Six seconds. Michael has his big survivor speech. Now, you guys, we've shared this before, but our camera operators, Randall and Matt, both worked on Survivor. So this had been a little bit of an interesting callback for them, right, Jenna? Well, yes. And how prepared were they to lug cameras on their shoulders on a beach?


I mean, these guys, they were like, oh, I've come full circle.


Yeah, bring it. So Michael says this.


A group of Americans will undergo the ultimate challenge one day, 14 strangers who work together, but only one survivor.


They're all like, what? What's about to happen here?


Well, what's about to happen is a spoon and egg race, Angela. Oh, yeah. Except the person with the egg will be blindfolded.


Although, Jenna, I don't know if you remember this, but poor Brian, they had him in the background. He's just eating his egg.


He's and it didn't make it on camera. And I remember feeling so bad that Brian, in the course of this time in the Heat, had to eat hard boiled eggs and hot dogs just like this poor guy.


And also, I think it's very funny that Michael hard boiled the eggs.


Yes. Because then if they fall off the spoon, it doesn't matter. So no point. There's no point.


Now, I am wondering and I don't know the answer.


I'm speculating, but I wonder if we had to hard boiled the eggs because we couldn't risk having eggs break on the beach and sort of leaving behind that kind of debris, because when we left there, we had to make it seem like we'd never been there at all.


Not only that, but there's no way we could be dealing with wardrobe issues with egg yolk.


Yes, exactly. But I like to think that it was just Michael's strange choice, but it was probably a very, very practical one.


Oh, I'm sure it was very thought out. I wrote, what the heck, who is setting up these tiki torches? Where did the blindfolds come in? Who carry the eggs? Who had the spoons? What is happening?


Oh, Angela, I don't know if it's in the deleted scenes, but in the script, there was an extra scene where Dwight discovers these boxes of supplies that Michael has packed in the back of the bus and he's trying to get Michael to tell him what they are. What are the torches for? What is this for? Michael and Michael's like, stop badgering me.


That is in the deleted scenes, but it's just a bag where he's trying to zip up. And Dwight's like, is that a swimsuit? Are we going to do Japanese business exercises? And but none of the other supplies are seen. And I guess my whole point is fine. Fine. Jenna, he had the supplies on the back of the bus. Who set them up? Where's my B roll footage of Dwight having to run around and stab tiki torches in the ground?


Well, I know I'm jumping ahead, but later we're going to see two guys setting a giant firepit thing with a red pickup truck. Who are these dudes?


I guess. All right. Oh, no. Michael had some assistant. OK, we just have to suspend belief a little bit, guys. I guess so.


Well, during this egg race at nine minutes.


Fifty four seconds, you can fully see Mehndi starting to laugh. Oh, yeah.


When Ed is yelling at her, when she's afraid she's going to run into the big rock.


Yes. She starts laughing. Yes. And I personally love how Ryan says to Dwight, if you keep shouting at me, I'm going to stop, I'm going to stop this race. And he doesn't stop shouting, so he just takes off his blindfold and throws his spoon on the ground.


Now, Jenna, I think there's a portion of that. Seeing that was on the fly kind of scene, that was improvised dialogue between BJ and Rain, that's what they talked about in the DVD commentary. Do you remember that?


Yes. Yes, that's right. Well, now Pam has her talking head where we see that she's taking her diligent notes. And we had something on questions from Lily asked Ashley Hildreth and Madison Barton. Jenna, did you really write the notes? And if so, what did you write?


I'm with you, I want to know, too, I'm like, I know my bf and I'm guessing you actually were writing things down. What were you doing? I was taking diligent notes, I knew it, I knew it in character. Yeah, so there's a moment where I hold up my notebook and I tried to freeze on it to see if I could copy down and it was too fuzzy. But you can see that I am writing.


You know, Dwight did this, Dwight did that, Jim did this, I thought that the best way to get through those scenes was to actually write down what was happening around me as if I was in character, isolated.


I figured you were. So you can see Michael is losing. People like Stanley is so happy Phyllis dropped the egg. He's going to go sit down. He's going to do his crossword on his lawn chair, create wanders off. And in the background, we see him catch a fish with his bare hands.


Yeah, well, there's a really fun little tidbit about that on the DVD commentary.


Harold said, you guys, this is how we did it. There was a rubber fish that they sort of submerged like in a bucket. What you can't see is this rubber fish in water in a bucket. And they really were able to cheat it because Creed's a little bit over the hill, you know. Yeah.


And he reaches down real fast and he pulls it out. But I thought he did a great job of selling that. That was some good hand acting. It was. And and Harold said true to Hollywood form this gag, that rubber fish cost five hundred dollars.


Well, here's an interesting tidbit.


Fishing is not allowed on screen. Oh, that's true. But maybe if you're Crede and you grab it with your bare hands.


Well, you know what that scene reminded me of Angela?


What the edge. Oh, good Lord. Having to just get the fish you got.


I mean, I don't know if anyone actually catches a fish with their hand on the edge, but I mean, that survived.


Maybe the bear did. The bear did. No, I won't bring up the bear. I know it's I know it's a trigger for you.


I really think you need to watch the series alone about these survivalist in the woods, because that's what it made me think of now. Hmmm, maybe I should. OK, I'm currently really obsessed with the chef show. The chef, a chef show, OK, so Jon Favreau, who incidentally, directed an episode of The Office in Season nine, will get to it. Yeah, he has this movie called Chef and it's so good. Came out several years ago.


It's one of my favorite movies.


Well, he is obsessed with bread baking and cooking. And so he has started the series called The Chef Show where he goes and he interviews different chefs while they make their signature dishes. I can't get enough of it. You must love it.


Now, this is a total tangent, but Isabelle and I love the greatest British Bake Off. We love it so much.


And it's. Yeah, checks off all my boxes. It's like in the beautiful English countryside.


Yeah. And I just love I love everything, especially when things don't go well. They'll say like a bit of a disaster wasn't it. Yes. Quite fell apart.


Yeah I know.


So matter of fact I love that show as well. That show is the show that got me to start making bread.


Oh, I didn't know that. Yeah. Yeah. That's my bread or a ginger bread origin story.


Oh my gosh. We are very often very off topic and we have a lot to cover. We've got to get to this hot dog eating contest.


Let's do it. We have a scene. Michael comes up to Pam and hands her eight hundred hot dogs that she needs to have ready in ten minutes.


What was Michael's budget for this day?


I don't know. Where did he get the money for the. Just the eight hundred hot dogs alone. I know. How much does that cost? Can someone do some math on that? 800 dogs. I need to know how much money Michael spent on hot dogs.


Well, also during that scene and this is slightly off topic, but also not we got some mail about it at 11 minutes. Twenty seven seconds you can see my bra strap.


Oh, and a lot of people wanted to know why am I wearing a bra and a bathing suit?


So here are my layers for the day, guys. I had on a bra because I like wearing them. That's why I have a bra on because I didn't want to wear just a flimsy swimming suit top. I like some support on top of the bra. I'm wearing my wardrobe swimming suit top, which I loved because Carrie Bennett, she came up with this idea that if it was like a halter suit, we would get an indication of a bathing suit, even though you never see me in the bathing suit.


I thought it was a great idea right then. I have on a tank top and the reason I'm wearing the tank top is to cover up the bra strap. We had a little bit of a fail here at eleven minutes. Twenty seven seconds, and then I'm wearing a hoodie.


Those were my layers. So I guess somehow Pam cooked these hot dogs. I mean, she has a glance at a camera where she's like, I don't know, maybe I didn't cook.


But there is a deleted scene between Pam and Michael where she is grilling the hot dogs and he comes over and he's like, speed it up, Pam.


Why aren't these done yet? And you're like, because there's eight hundred of them. Amazing. Amazing. So now it's time for the big hot dog eating contest. Yeah. By the way, Michael takes credit for cooking up the hot dogs. I know.


I know. And there is a wonderful deleted scene, Jenna. It wasn't scripted. It was a collective improv moment when Michael says dip it in the water so it will slide down your gullet more easily. Our whole table said that's what she said.


I remember that. And it didn't make it in, but it's so good. That's because that line from Steve was an improvisation.


He he in the script, he yelled at Phyllis, dip it in the water, dip it in the water. But that's all that was scripted. So Steve in the moment added the so it'll slide down your gullet faster. And then we all we I mean, how can you not how can you not how can you not.


That was a layup. No, that was a softball isn't a lay up in a softball. Sort of the same idea. I don't know Lay-up. After I thought about it, I'm going to give this to softball, because a softball involves more than one person, right? So softball, one person sends a softball to another who then hits it out of the park, whereas with a layup it's you do it on your own, you do it on your own.


And I mean, a layup through a crowd is not easy to do.


If there's a bunch of guys in the paint, let me throw some basketball at.


Yeah, but maybe if we got to talking with you, I think a layup is if you on a second hold on us. That's the last time you did a layup. I did one this week. What is it to you. A layup is when you dribble up to the basket and you put it in. On your own, but I'm telling you, if you're doing a lap. You know, and you're on your age if you're doing a lay up and you're being guarded, but then there's the breakaway layup, right?


If you steal the ball and you got the whole back of the court to yourself and you're like, yeah, and you do your layup and then sometimes you want to dunk on your layup hard for me because I'm five one. What's happening right now? I don't know where what is what we do, you watch basketball. Are you like a basketball fan? Where's all this lingo coming from?


I play basketball. I play JV. And then when everyone got really tall, I had to stop playing because I was too short and we had a really good point guard.


So then I became a basketball cheerleader and I was also the manager on the basketball team and I was also a mascot. One basketball season. And I love basketball and we have a hoop in our driveway and we play all the time. And I have a fantastic outside shot and I often win at horse.


Angela, I'm clapping because people couldn't see me bowing down to you, but, I mean, I'm speechless. I did not know this about you. And also I, I mean, I defer to you here. If this were a debate and someone had to win, you won.


I mean, that was just I want you to know it's not out yet, but I have this Advil commercial where I have to shoot baskets and I made like 13 baskets in a row. And one of them they used in the actual shot. And I was so happy that they showed the whole shot. So I was like, I made that sucker.


You were Brian Baumgartner while shooting the basketball episode, you have like a secret basketball skill that no one knew about.


Don't you remember the basketball hoop by our trailers and we would play horse? I was always out there with the guys playing horse.


I do remember that. And I have a picture of it. Yeah, well, listen, I feel like we've gone off topic.


You think we're back to the hot dogs, guys, back to the hot dogs and wins the competition. But this was an arduous scene for everyone to shoot. I was really lucky, Jenna, because I said my character is a vegetarian. She's not going to be eating these. I made a really big plea about that.


But poor Brian and Ed. Leslie, all those guys were shoving hot dogs in their face, and Jenna, do you remember, they were starting to gag. Do you remember that?


Yeah, you know, we got a fan question from Caitlin Mulvihill who said, How many times did you have to film the hot dog contest scene? And did you have to eat all the hot dogs?


Every time I, I just remember it took a long time. It was a lot of angles, a lot of coverage, a lot of reaction shots.


We were there for like half a day. Yeah. And Jen, we asked Jen, what was the hardest stunt during beach games. And this is what she had to say. I think the answer for what was the hardest stunt of this episode depends on who you ask. I think for the actors, it was possibly the hot dog eating contest. I'm curious what you guys think. I remember spit buckets. I could be wrong about that, but I'm fairly certain there were a bunch of spit buckets, but there was some actual eating of hot dogs.


And I think Ed Helms ate an enormous amount of hot dogs. If I remember correctly. I think he was going really hard for winning the contest.


So I, I think that that was probably a lot of people's answers for me. It was getting the shot during the Michael talking head of and floating away at sea. Yes. We will get to that. She sent in some more amazing stuff about that stunt. But I do remember this BitBucket, Sanj. I do, too.


And one of the things you guys on some shows, the way they shoot, you know, when you're on camera and when you're off camera, you don't have to sort of participate. You can kind of not eat. Right. But the way we shot this, there was a huge group shot. Right. There's a camera that's capturing everything. So these guys had to eat on every take because they never knew when the camera was specifically on them or not.


And I remember when they would yell, cut immediately, like the prop guys would run over with buckets and these guys would all start spitting in the buckets because they couldn't have the buckets on the ground.


There was nowhere to hide them.


Right. And so the prop guys would run over with the buckets. And Ed set this thing in the DVD commentary. He said, first of all, spitting out food that I've been chewing and holding in my mouth, the the action of spitting out this chewed food would activate my gag reflex. So I'd start gagging. And he said, but then on top of that, this bucket that they would bring around, several other people had spit their food out into just all of it.


All of it, he said, like they were all getting so grossed out. Well, this scene really reminded me of that birthday cake scene from Meredith's birthday where we all a mint chocolate chip ice cream cake.


I can't eat it to this day. I can't eat it. Same we ate so much of it because we never knew when we were on camera and then like that.


I feel like there's barely any footage in this episode of these guys eating the hot dogs, it does not accurately reflect how much hot dog eating happened. Not at all.


These poor guys and Jim isn't eating the hot dogs.


There's a deleted scene where he brought a tuna salad and he is not even participating.


So John did not have to do this and neither did I and neither did Steve.


Oh, God. Well, Jenna. So Andy wins with 13 hot dogs, right?


Mm hmm. Mm hmm.


I just looked up this year the hot dog eating contest, the Nathan's hot dog eating contest for twenty 20.


Did you two did you do. Because I've been to the hot dog eating contest. What? Yeah.


Well, in 2011.


What how I went to Coney Island, Lee and I were in New York.


We were looking for something to do over July 4th weekend. And you went to it. We saw that the Coney Island hot dog eating. We got on the subway and we rode it out there. I was very pregnant. I was like seven months pregnant.


Oh, my gosh.


I did not know any of this. See, you think you know your best friend and then all of a sudden she's going to a hot dog eating contest and she knows how to play basketball.


Yeah, exactly. And I here's my memory. It was super exciting. We only saw the men's contest. I saw Joey Chestnut win the hot dog eating contest. He won again this year. Yeah. And he broke his world record this year. His nickname is Jaws. Joey Jaws Chestnut. Yeah. This year because we both looked it up. Joey Chestnut eight. Seventy five hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes and Jenna in the female category. Mickey pseudo eight.


Forty eight and a half hot dogs in ten minutes and now has the new world record.


Yeah. Joey Chestnut has won every year since 2007 with the exception of one year in 2015. Matt Stoney won. But Joey has won every year since and Mickey has won every year since 2014. I will say one thing. When I went to the hot dog eating contest, I mentioned I was very pregnant. I had to pee and there were no restrooms. And all of the businesses, because they're such a giant influx of people that come down, they all have signs that say no public restroom, no public restroom, no public restroom.


You can't just go in and use their bathroom.


But I found an employee at the Dunkin Donuts who sneaked me in and let me use the bathroom there. And I'm still to this day, I want to say thank you so much for helping me relieve my pregnant bladder that day. Thank you. Nice person at Dunkin Donuts on Coney Island in 2011.


You know, if you were Merideth, like the deleted scene, you would have just gone and squat in the bushes right by the bus.


Oh, no, the poor Kate. Kate, in this episode. Oh, my God.


Well, maybe.


Angela, on that note, we should take a break here and both use the restroom and then we'll come back with some sabotage sandwich. No, I said sandwich earlier this time. I'm saying sabotage.


OK, we are back and oh, Angela, I love this scene so much, I rewound it and watched it twice.


I do love the scene. It's one of my favorites. So this is the scene where Dwight and Angela have tiptoed away from the group and they're having a private conversation about sabotage. Dwight would like Angela to sabotage her team.


Yes, the ancient art, like Dutch sabotage. It was like what? This scene was so fun to film. First of all, I remember Jen and Harold and Rain and I trying to figure out where Dwight and I would be, where it would really look like we were away from everyone, and also that we would think that we got away with it, right? Yes. And that the spy shot would have to be far enough away. So we did sort of climb.


There were these little sand dunes. Jenna, do you remember there are sort of small and they had like big sort of like tall kind of grass growing out of them.


Yeah. Like reedy grass yelling out of them. Itchy, itchy, reedy grass. Like it kind of I remember kind of cut you a little if it touched your skin.


But we we sort of tucked back in there for the scene and there are some great bloopers and it's mostly just me laughing because I could not get through it when he said sabotage and I said sandwich every single time.


The absurdity of these two, not to mention I could hear John Salada laughing from her little group of bushes, were her and Harold were hiding.


And I would be like, Jen, stop laughing. I just got it together. And now Jen is laughing and you couldn't see her. It was just like this little clump of bushes that was like.


Oh, my gosh, I love it so much, I love the end when Dwight says if Michael organizes a group hug, stand next to me.


Jen told me she loved writing for Dwight Manjula, that she loved their sort of suppressed love for one another.


Yeah. Oh, it's such a good scene. Such a good scene.


One thing about the scene that made it tricky that you might not think of is that this is one of the few times where Dwight and I have to be standing facing one another and you really see our height difference.


I knew it was a wide shot because it was a spy shot, but now it makes me think it was also that wide to fit you both in frame.


Yes. And the other thing the other thing to point out, which I thought was really great, is you can really see that Dwight is wearing a Coopers seafood T-shirt.


He knew a local Scranton reference there, you know. Well, next up is the sumo competition. Oh, my goodness, China. Where to begin?


Where to begin, where to begin? I'll tell you, I did one of those like a ghafar. Is that the word? Were you laugh out loud like it? Just like it takes over your body and you can't even suppress it. When I saw John in his little toothpick legs walk out in that sumo suit, look at his legs if you have it.


Look at his tiny little legs sticking out of that sumo suit and his little head popping up. It made me laugh so hard.


Now I know that those guys were just so hot in those suits. Oh, yeah, they were dying. And we had these little fans that they would try to, like, cool them off with.


But I'm sure that they were just so sweaty. But they also had the best time in those. They were like they all turned into children and they were loving it.


I have to say, they couldn't wait to run at each other and, like, throw themselves at each other and all of it. They were having so much fun.


But I do remember between takes.


They could not sit down. Yes. They could not sit down and people would run over with, like, little umbrellas and these fans to try to cool them off and know I was hanging out with rain. And I have this great photo that one of the things I loved is that I could lean on Rheins belly like I had something to prop myself up on. So this photo and it's him and I casually talking, but I'm resting myself on his sumo belly.


That's incredible. Well, we had a fan question from Freya Mackenzie and Jesse Magidson, is it true that Rainn Wilson actually put Leslie David Baker in the hospital while shooting beach games?


Yes. What happened was that during all this sumo wrestling, Leslie got sand in his eyes and they tried to flush it out, but they couldn't. And I remember he had to leave set. And I don't know if he went to the hospital or to an eye doctor, but he had a scratched cornea.


Yeah, I thought they took him to a local like the clinic, the nearest hospital every single day. When you're filming, whether it's on set or location, they put in the call sheet the location where you're filming and the nearest hospital's location.


Yeah. So I researched that ahead of time for this reason.


So I think they took him to the nearest whatever that was clinic, right? Yeah. And he was in quite a bit of pain and he was like, no, it's still in there. There's something wrong.


You know, that moment in your body where you're like, it's not right, something's not right.


And it had in fact, scratched his cornea and they treated him and then he came back and finished filming because he's such a trooper.


Well, I've had this happen to me, Angela. I got a piece of sand in my eye by using a face scrub.


Oh, Lord. Sand in it.


And I got a piece in my eye and I was like, it feels like something's in your eye when you scratch your cornea. But I couldn't find it. So I went to an eye doctor and I had scratched my cornea. So I, I feel for Leslie.


It is a very it is a not fun feeling.


I have never scratched my cornea. But one time I was eating jalapeno potato chips because I love them so much and I bit into it kind of aggressively.


And the hollow peno dust off the chip went into my eyes and it was very painful.


Why are you laughing? This really happened.


I bit into the jeopardy that I was like, Oh yeah, why am I wearing? How could you listen to a story about, you know, OK, we should probably get back on topic.


Yeah, well, here's the thing. I remember Leslie leaving set, but I don't remember when exactly it happened or how it happened. I just know he got sand in his eye.


All right. This is what I think happened. I watched the deleted scenes and there is a moment it's not in the episode where Dwight is wrestling with Stanley and knocks him to the ground and was like, take that old man. And he kind of kicks it the sand.


Right. And I yes, I'm remember.


Yes. And I think then rain felt really bad because he realized in that moment he that's when he that's when we thought it happened.


Yes, that's right, yeah, that's right. Well, this was not the only injury from this episode. Ed hurt his finger during the sumo wrestling. Do you remember that? I think he, like, lost a fingernail or something. He was like, sorry, that makes me laugh so hard.


I shouldn't laugh. But it's when that moment, if you guys watch it, when Andy and Dwight really start going at each other like Dwight walks over, he's eating a sandwich, even though he's eaten all these hot dogs, he walks over and then they just start going at each other. And Ed is like kind of flailing his arms at them somehow in this tussle. Ed broke his fingernail, but he said he broke it really badly, get ripped, I think it ripped below the that's what I remember.


It was gruesome, it was gruesome, but it was like yelling. And consumers are like, stop, stop. And all he could get out was I broke my nail and people were like, oh, did you break your fingernail?


I was like, no, guys. I broke my nail. Oh, no. Oh, no.


But he didn't leave, said, no, he didn't leave. They came over and they but there was that moment when someone was like, what happened? Like Ed broke his nail. And he's like, no, it's more than just a broken nail. And then they they wrapped it up.


Well, now, Angela, we're going to get into a big moment.


This was huge for our show. This is a huge stunt. You you have to remember, our show never left a little tiny office.


So we've got a breakdown.


We've got two big things coming up. We've got this and floating away and then the coals. So, Jonah, let's start with Andy.


OK, Andy walks over to the water. And we had a fan question about this from Ali Joe Higginbotham, who said, When Andy walks to the lake, he has something yellow in his hand. What is he holding and what is he planning to do with it up the shore? Well, he's holding a band.


He's holding a yellow bandanna. Michael had handed these out in the egg race, and that's what everyone had used to, to cover their eyes. And Andy is holding his yellow bandanna from the egg race. And he's going to he hopes to dip it in the water to then maybe wrap it around his neck to cool himself off.


This was the idea. Yes. But instead, he falls in the water and starts floating away when he fell in the water.


You know, I wasn't too far off because my character witnesses this. Yes. And there is a take that didn't make it that he literally went he rolled Jonah.


He rolled into the water. But they used this take because it was more clear why he was going down there. He's trying to trying to hang that bandanna in the water, trying to balance. Well, let me say.


And we got another frequently asked question from Candice Kelso, Michael Lugh, Olive Taylor and Phoebe Barnow. Was that really dead in the water or was that a stunt double, guys, that was dead in the water and did it all? I don't know that they offered him a stunt double. I don't know.


Kent told me they offered him a stunt double, but Ed insisted on doing all of the floating in the water himself. He was out there floating for over 45 minutes. And I'm thinking maybe when he was like, oh, no, I'll fall in the water. Like, maybe he didn't realize what that all entailed. Yeah. And perhaps having a stunt double on the side to complete some of the very far away floated by guys. That is, Ed, the whole time floating out there, not only in the day, but then he had to do it again at night.


There's two different shoots for him in the water, a day scene and a night scene. Now, when he was out there at night, he did have a thin, wet suit on underneath all that sumo gear to keep him warm. So they did think of that. But before we get too far into the stunt, Angela, we also had fan questions from Rebecca Gonzalez, Connor and Maura Anderson, who said, Angela, how did you make it through the scene of Andy floating away?


It was so hard, it was just, hey, boy, I'm sorry. It was really it was really difficult, difficult not to laugh really difficult, especially because Ed was improvising a little bit as he floated away. Some of that dialogue was not scripted. So, you know, when I'm like, I don't really understand what it is you're saying to me that was scripted. But then Ed Ed was physically floating away. He was dealing with the elements and he improvised this line.


Look at what I'm doing and go tell somebody it lost that line so much. That was Ed improvising. That is awesome.


I know. So it was really hard. And I didn't want to laugh because poor Ed is floating out in that water, you know what I mean?


Like, yes, if you laugh, you ruin that moment and he has to float longer.


I was working hard, working hard not to laugh. Well, we asked Chad about that in the water, and here's what she had to say.


Oh, shooting the Andy floating away scenes was really fun. I love that part of the script. I love when Angela pretends that she doesn't understand what he's saying. That was so much fun to write. I remembered that Ed was like in the sumo suit and then there was a rope attached to him and he was being pulled by a boat. And then at a certain point the boat would leave him and then he would just drift.


But there was also a current I believe the water was also cold and he had to keep his head up. And I remember that it was a challenging thing because his head would sort of get lost and it would just like go under unless he helped.


He put his neck up and just try to hold it up. So I think it was a difficult thing.


Also, the timing of the boat and the time he was trying to get it on camera with Michael's talking head was difficult. So I remember that Ed was like a real trouper. And there were a lot of discussions about, like how far out he should be at sea because we wanted to see him.


We didn't want to be too obvious that it was him and Michael might see him, but we didn't want him to be so far away that he was this tiny little dot.


So it was in the water for quite a while while we tried to work this out.


And the other thing I remember, which is crazy to say now, but there was a safety meeting right before it.


And I, I feel like at the very beginning of the safety meeting, like Ed was and it was there, but like he was just getting there because everything was so Rush. And I think the safety person said one thing, like I said, was approaching that I wasn't sure Ed clocked. And I had this moment of should I tell him or not? And I remember the safety guy talking about water snakes. And I was like, oh, my God, oh, my God.


Do I repeat this? Do I not repeat this? Said, I don't think I repeated it to Ed because, like, he was going to be in this water. It was going to be very cold, I thought would I want to know about water snakes before I got into the water and a sumo suit or not.


So, yeah, I think I made that decision. Tell me if you think that was the correct decision to make anyways.


There were a lot of challenges of shooting that there were no snake events during the shooting of that sequence. And I thought I did a phenomenal job and so did Angela. And I'm just in love with that sequence of events. But it was challenging to shoot.




And and the possibility of water snakes. Oh, my God.


Oh, boy. Oh, lot. How well.


Now, Jen mentioned in her clip that they would have to pull Ed behind a boat to get him in place.


So Kent told me that powerboats were not allowed on the lake, so they had to have a stunt coordinator in a rowboat. I remember Jenna. I remember showing him. Yeah.


Can you imagine if you're somewhere else at this park and you're just hiking? Or maybe you're riding a horse from the equestrian center and you look out onto the lake and you see a man in a rowboat rowing, another man by a rope who's in a sumo suit? What are you thinking when you see that?


I don't know what goes there. I don't know. I don't know. Are you worried? What are you thinking?


So I watched this play out because we would have to reset Ed to that spot where we would have dialogue and inevitably he'd float away.


Right. And they would the guy there, he was he and I had to make sure I didn't look at the robot guy. Right. You know, like I couldn't have my arm. My eyes dart away. But off in the periphery of my vision was this guy in a boat and he would row and pull Ed. Ed had a harness suit on.


Under the sumo suit, and they put through the arm of the sumo suit a fishing line. Yeah, and this guy would pull Ed in, as he did know, I would see water break around his body, you know, like something in the water. Yeah. And Ed said that a majority of that water as he was being pulled would flush through the suit and out his neck.


Well, Kent told me, if you look carefully in the Michael talking head where Ed is floating in the background, you will see that there's a pretty strong current in the water. But Ed is not moving. That is because at that point, the only way to keep him in the shot was to just keep him attached to the boat. And so he said, if you look for it, he's very oddly staying in one place while a pretty heavy current is going underneath him.


So, so insane.


Angela, I also got the story about these sumo suits from Kerri Bennett, our wardrobe designer.


Oh, let's hear it. So she said that this was one of the most difficult costume challenges she had for our show.


She had to create these inflatable sumo suits, but because she knew Andy would end up floating away in it, whatever she put them in had to be safe for him to float on water.


So she said as soon as she read the script, she immediately went to Greg and said, I cannot design a costume that will allow someone to float on water. I need a stunt person to help me. So she got together with the stunt person and they realized that kind of like what Jen said, the biggest challenge was keeping his head from going underwater because she was like his body would float, but the head would go under. So that is why the guys are wearing those crazy head pieces in the episode.


Those were custom made, right? Yes. She said, what if I made a floaty helmet in the shape of like a sumo wrestlers bun and the bun is actually a floating device.


Brilliant. So she designed this extra bit of safety for Ed with this floaty bun. And before we shot, they went over to Kent Saboor next pool and they put a stunt guy in the suit and they tested it out and it worked.


Oh, my gosh. You're talking about what happens when, like, someone's riding a horse by and Ed's floating and there's a guy with a rowboat. What about kids? Family?


Hey, Dad, what's who's in the pool? Don't worry about it. It's a little thing for work.


Totally. Totally.


Also, when these guys in the writers room wrote this sequence. They had no idea the places that they would put people through to make it realized on screen, it was just a funny idea.


Oh, you know what would be funny? They wrestle in these sumo suits and then it falls in the water and floats away.


I mean, the amount of effort that went into making that happen, I know I think about this all the time with our scripts, like, oh, I'll be funny, we'll have a funeral for a bird, but we need a specialized tiny coffin made.


Yeah. And several dead birds to choose from.


Mm hmm. And then Jim and Karen sneak off and they're sneaking off to call David. But Pam doesn't know that. But, you know, she saw them walk away. You know, she did. She's aware. Yeah. And they have this moment where they, you know, call David. Jim says he wants to be considered and then Karen does.


And then Jim is like teasing her because she she sort of fumbles her words right when she calls David.


Yeah, I didn't think that was cool boyfriend behavior, I have to say. Oh, right, because she's she's trying to leave a professional message. Right. She's speaking to David Wallace and she's saying she'd like to be considered for this job and he's kind of heckling her during this phone call and I and he's distracting her. And I know I think it was meant to be kind of cute and playful, but I don't know.


If I'm if I'm making a professional phone call, I don't appreciate being heckled. Don't mess with me. Don't mess with me when I'm making an important boss lady call.


Or is he trying to sabotage? He might be trying to sandwich this moment. He tried to sandwich it.


Well, we also mentioned earlier that this was an added scene. Originally, these phone calls happened in the office before we went to beach day, but they made a change and they decided it was better to reveal this information later.


But this led to problems like we already had such a packed day and here we were trying to add little moments and add little scenes. And Jen actually talked about this as one of the challenges, just trying to get everything shot on these days because, you know, you have so many things you have to shoot in daylight and then the sun goes down. You can't make it stay out.


Also, these were such big, ambitious days, and if we would go past the allotted time, we would get into overtime, which was incredibly expensive for the show, because they would have to pay the crew overtime, the actors overtime. And so Kent Zbornak, our line producer, was trying to keep us on our day and he was having to check in with Jeanne and Harold quite a bit about it. Yeah, here's what she had to say about that.


And I remember Kent being very patient with us and giving us extra time and adding in cushions, but it was still really difficult to get everything that we needed to get done. I mean, we were going very fast and working incredibly efficiently. It was just hard.


And I remember there was one moment where Kent had already given us a cushion and maybe even a second cushion. And then we were about to go over it. But we were almost done. We were so close to being done. But Kent called and I got the call and we were about ready to say, you know, Harold was about ready to call action. And Ken is like frustrated because he wants us to be done, because he's given us extra time and he wants it to be done and completely understandable.


But I knew that if I kept talking to Kent, we were going to be slowed down by 10 seconds at that point in that 10 seconds would allow us to finish the shot. So Ken is talking to me and I very gently and gingerly just put the phone down on a chair and we got the last shot and we were done. Definitely this weird moment of like this is the producer of your show telling you that you need to stop shooting. And I realize I can either talk to him about the fact they're going to stop shooting or get the shot.


So we got the shot. Well, it's definitely one of those moments of like her. I hope that was cool.


Angela, I think that what Jen is talking about is a little bit of sabotage.


She was hollering. She she's not sabotaging. She's sabotaging her phone call. Right. So that they could get these shots. I think it's pretty amazing. Like, I can sort of just visualize Kent going on and on. Like Jen, you can't keep adding scenes in there that you just set the phone down and was like, yeah, do it one more time.


One more time, please. Bentinck. Yes, exactly. Well, you guys part of Kent's job, he has such a hard job because he answers to both Greg, who is the creative voice of the show.


And, you know, his job is to make all of Greg's dreams come true creatively. But he also answers to the network who has given him a budget and a timetable. And you can't spend more money than this. And everything that you said earlier, Angela, about staying on time, because Kent will look at a script and he will try to estimate based on conversations with the director and the writer in the crew, how long each scene will take.


So he'll say, all right, we need three hours to film, edit, see, but I'm only going to give 45 minutes to Jim and Karen in the sand. That's right. And if any of these things go over even ten minutes, they have to steal ten minutes from another scene and it is becomes just this logistical nightmare. And Kent has to keep an eye on all of it.


And it is a vicious domino effect to once you get off, it just spirals your whole day.


I feel like this is like a great metaphor for partnerships, because I feel like in every family there's one person that's a little bit of the big thinker dreamer on vacation.


We'll do all of this.


And then there's the person in the relationship that's like I've allotted eighty dollars for things at the gift shop. That's all we're spending at the gift shop. OK, because if we spend more than 80 dollars at the gift shop, we can't do that extra bungee cord thing that you all want to do quick.


Yes, that is exactly cain't. Yeah. Is that person. Keep us on budget. Keep us on time. Yeah. Well now Angela, it is time for the whole walk talk about.


Not a big scene. This was a big evening for us. It was a very ambitious shoot. We had a lot to cover.


We could not start till it got dark. Yep. And there was a lot of prep. I don't know if you remember how they made those calls. Do you remember?


I do. It was multilayered. And we had a lot of people ask this question about how did you make the calls? We got mail from Ellie Trautmann. Shandra em. Jamie asks Heather Donnally, Renee are and many others. They wanted to know, how did the props department create the hot coals? They looked so real because, guys, these were not real coals. Yes.


So we could not have a huge fire here. You guys, we were allowed to have the tiki torches and little small flames, for example, when the when the pile of wood burst into flames. That's all special effects. That was not at all a fire. They put that in in post because there were fire regulations at this particular park. Right. So.


Well, there are fire regulations in California in general. Yes. Yes, absolutely.


So Harold Ramis talked a little bit about this coal fire pit on the DVD commentary. He said they started, first of all, by digging a big hole in the ground and then they buried in the ground a light box, just a big box that lit up.


And then they put on top of the light box these little yellow and orange gels to make it look like a flame. And then on top of those light gels, on top of the light box, they put little lava rocks and then running on either side of this hole in the ground, they had put two gas lines with very small little flickers of real fire that popped out of the ground.


Yes, and because there was real fire as part of the cold walk, we had a very big safety meeting about that.


One of our biggest. Yeah. For sure, it's particularly important because, as you know, reign as Dwight is going to walk on to these hot coals, stand there and then follow the ground, and that was real fire next to him on either side of him. Yes. And I remember when Reagan did that, one of the most painful things for Reagan was being barefoot on the lava rocks. It hurt. It's like it's like stepping on a Lego.


You know how that feels.


I do know how it feels because I did it as well. Yeah. In fact, I'll say that people have mentioned that I look like my feet really hurt after I walk across the hot coals and they've wondered if I really walked on hot coals. No, my feet were sore and bruised from having to run across lava rocks over and over again.


Yeah, like my feet did kind of her throw a bunch of, like, hard Legos on the ground and run back and forth over them.


That's as good as a cold walk right there. I'll go walk. If you want that experience, you can do it at home.


Michael wanted everyone to walk over the hot coals. We said he has to go first in Steve's hesitation as Michael to go over those coals.


Jenna was so brilliant, his whole body posture, the expression on his face, and he improvised the line. The mind has to wrap around the foot.


That was an improvisation that I did not look that up, I love knowing that and we have a callback to this whole runner of Angela being grossed out by Kevin's feet.


Yes, she's like, that's right.


I am not going to go after you and your gross feet. And he's like, Angela is like a thousand degrees.


Now, one of my favorite moments in this whole sequence is when Michael says to the group he's so disappointed that no one has walked across the coals except sort of Dwight.


And he says, you know what, it's clear to me that if I had to name my replacement today, it would be Mr. Outside Higher. And then Angela says or Mrs. Outside Higher.


And Michael is like, yes, or that.


So it made me laugh so hard. I know a little bit.


Angela says there, like, I pointed my finger.


Yeah, wait, wait. We we do have a background catch. We can't pass up. It's too good. Say it while Michael's going on and on about who won't walk across the coals. And he's like an Andy is never here today. It pans past us to the water. Andy has floated into the marsh.


He's stuck on his back porch, Ed in the dark, in the lake, and at 19 minutes, fifty five seconds, you can see his wet suit on his arm.


Oh, yeah, on his arm. His arm is like extended out of his sumo suit. And you can see the beige wetsuit that he had to put on because it was so cold.


And then people wrote in Anjelah and they said, how come in season nine when Pam is crying, the documentary crew helps her, but when Andy is floating away at night, they just turn off the camera lights and walk away. I know. I know. That's one of the questions Jack had my stepson. He was like, why didn't why the camera crew not help him? I do. And I like, you know what?


At that moment, they were like, we can't disturb the natural course of the story. Right. Just document it.


Well, we're coming up to this big moment. There is a huge moment about to happen for Pam. Yeah.


She wants to run across the coals and Michael says, no, no. Yeah. And then he moves them on and he wants them all to speak. Dwight is doing his version of the Restrike Aristocrat's very badly. And in the background, Pam runs across the coals. Yeah, and this just feeds her soul, she feels so alive in this moment, she did this one thing for herself and she runs over to the group and she wants to share.


Yeah, and she gives this speech and everything just comes pouring out her disappointment that people didn't come to the art show, but more than that, her feelings for Jim and how much she misses him and the truth, the big truth, which is that while there were many reasons to call off her wedding to Roy, the reason she did it was because of how she feels about Jim.


Yeah. And, Wolf, first of all, I sat next to John in this scene. Angela and Jim are side by side. I don't know if you noticed that. I did.


And so when you were talking to Jim, I was right in your eyeline. You know, I couldn't believe my luck, honestly, because this is such a beautiful performance by Eugena, you do such a great job, it's so moving to watch you as Pam transition through all of those beats. And I had this out of body experience as your friend, watching you in awe, give this fantastic performance, wanting to tear up and cry because my friend was crushing it and then having to be Angela Martin, who would never react to you that way.


And then at the same time. Just being in all of this moment, it was it was just a beautiful thing to watch, know you did such a great job and you had to do it over and over. We did several takes because they had to get people's reactions. And every time you crushed it, every single time. Well, a lot of people ask if that speech was improvised or partially improvised and it was not, that was all written.


And as Jen shared with us, written by Greg Daniels and I memorized it and delivered it word for word.


I worked on it for a very long time, and I remember. I remember trying to think about those times in my life where you've done something that give you a burst of adrenaline. And. That's what I wanted her to come into the speech with. She's just done this cold walk and she has this burst of adrenaline and she doesn't even think about. That she's going to share it's it's completely different. This is very impulsive and that was that was kind of what I put behind the speech.


But I knew that speech backwards and forwards. I could have delivered it for days because I also know as an actor, at least for me, especially, the more I know the material, the less I have to think of the words.


Exactly. And it can just be about the performance. I was I never had to search for it. I had it. It was like, yeah, a little tape in my head.


That's exactly right.


You don't have to worry about what you're saying and you can just really experience the moment and feel it because the words are all there.


And I just thought it was brilliant and I thought everyone's reactions were great because there's there's, um. There is a dance that you do.


On a show like The Office, there is the person who is driving the scene who's putting out all this information, and then the other side of the story is the people reacting to it. And the two parts are very important.


And I thought that John is Jim. His reactions were great. Everyone in the crowd, they cut to Rasheda.


Oh, my God.


Her look as Karen was amazing. It was like, I can't believe this is happening.


Oh, my God, it was everything. And also heartbreak. It was all of it.


Yeah. Well, and you mention about what it's like to be the person driving a scene. This was kind of my first experience with that, and it was this huge speech. And that's another reason why I made sure I knew every single word.


And I got a real glimpse at what Steve does every single day, every single week while delivering these big speeches to the group.


I mean, all your eyeballs were on me. I was so nervous.


Yeah, it's a lot of work. It's a lot of work. And not just the cast watching you, the whole crew.


It's everything.


Yeah, well, I thought it was so great. I just loved it so much.


Well, thank you. You know, I hadn't seen it since it first aired. And when I watched it, I was really proud of myself. You showed me like, oh my gosh, I love that that performance is on tape and I can watch it later because it really made me feel like a good actress.


I was like, oh, look at me go, oh, good actors. You should you should feel that way. You should.


Well, I was always I was always curious why they sat me next to Jim and didn't have Karen next to him.


And then that moment ends with Jim looking straight ahead in me, kind of looking off to the side like, oh, my God, yeah.


I think you are there to be the audience reflected. Right. You're what everyone at home is like. Whoa.


So I think it was good to have you there being that other piece of the conversation. Yeah. But, you know, the episode was supposed to end there in the script. That's the end of the episode. Yeah, but we added a little tag back on the bus singing on the bus. And this tag confused a lot of people and well, it's daytime.


We're clearly happy none of this has happened. It doesn't make any time sequential sense, right? Yes. Everyone wanted to know, did you sleep at the beach? You're all in the same clothes. How does everyone look like they've bathed? If they spent the night at the beach, they just threw this tag on the end. It was an extra little bit of fun from the episode. It was not meant to be sequential. Yeah, we did not spend the night at the beach storywise.


Yeah, they just in editing, they liked it. They like to end on this sort of upbeat, you know, there's this huge emotional moment has just happened and then it's us all as a group. And Ed said in the DVD commentary that he started the song The Flintstones on the bus. And for him it was a nod to planes, trains and automobiles. Mm.


Which I love. I love that too. You know, they do something similar in the Valentine's Day episode. They had that little bit of extra footage of Steve improvising in front of the theater and they threw that bit on the end as a tag for Valentine's Day. So it's just something we did sometimes.


Yeah. And I think you can get away with that in a a cold open in a tag. They sort of can be their little standalone moments.


But just before we wrap this up, I wrote about some of my memories of filming this episode in my journal. And I said one of the things I loved is that Rashida and I had our trailers side by side in the parking lot and we weren't very far away. We were just really close to the catering truck. And so in the morning, Harold Ramis would get his coffee and Jen and they would have to walk past Rashied and I and we would sit on like the front steps of my trailer like it was our front stoop, right?


Yeah. And we would visit in the mornings with Harold and Jen.


And I have a photo of us and, you know, having our coffee in the morning.


I just love it. I love that. I love that. I love that memory so much.


I don't know if we can say enough what an honor and pleasure it was to work with him. But Jen also mentioned this in one of her audio clips. Yeah.


What it meant to her to have the opportunity to work with him. I'm so glad he was the person in charge of this crazy, crazy episode.




Because he was such a delight. Jenna, I remembered as I was going through photos, do you remember, because him and Jen had to be kind of far away where we were filming, that he had a microphone and he would give sort of big general notes on this microphone and. You would yell at him to tell us jokes and he would tell us jokes, and in the DVD Rain, they said that Rain would say, tell us more about Groundhog Day.


He would share little bits of trivia on this microphone to us, you know, as we were way far away on the beach.


And he just made it all so fun.


Well, Jen mentioned that he was really instrumental in mentoring her. And actually, Sam, why don't you play that clip one moment?


Another thing that happened on that episode was there was a there was a it was a challenging episode because we had a lot to get.


And and the elements were tricky, too. I remember it was like incredibly cold and they were headlamps and it was also scorching hot sometimes and within the course of one day. So there are a lot of additional challenges that episode. And there was one day where I was like, we were not going to make our day by sunset. We just way more to shoot than was actually possible to shoot in that day with our challenges. And he said to me at one point, Jen, let's divide up.


You work with the actors and I'll do the tech stuff. And it was only for a brief amount of time, but it was one of just a thrill of mine that I was able to do that and kind of start talking to the actors in a slightly different way and start thinking about the course of being a director. And it all started with that episode and giving me a little bit of that responsibility because it was just too much to get done.


I'm so grateful for Harold and I. It's one of the biggest thrills of my career that I got to work with him. And guys, Jen ended up directing two episodes of the office, she directed Crime, Aid and the promotion, it just fit so perfectly that he extended that to her and shared that with her.


And how lucky were we?


Yeah, well, guys, that beach games, that is beach games.


Thank you so much for listening. This was so wonderful to watch. I loved it.


I loved it.


This was one of my favorite weeks to prepare me to share.


Yeah. And to shoot. We got to live it and relive it. What a gift.


Well, next week we have a really big week. It's the job and we're wrapping up season three. Now we're going to divide the job into two parts because it's an hour long episode. We're going to have the job, part one and the job part two.


But it's all going to be good. All right, guys, we'll see you next week. Have a good one. We love you. Thank you for listening to office ladies Office Ladies is produced by Airball Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey. Our producer is Cody Fischer, our sound engineer is Sam Kiffer, and our associate producer is Ainsley Boubakeur. Our theme song is Rubber Tree by Creed Bratton. For ad free versions of Office Ladies, go to Stitcher premium dot com for a free one month trial of Stitcher Premium Use Code Officer.