James Spader will be taking a full time position on NBC's The Office, but he won't be replacing Steve Carrell's character, Michael Scott.
Instead, he will be filling the gap left by Kathy Bates as Jo Bennett, the CEO of Dunder Mifflin's parent company, Sabre. Bates is not expected to return to The Office anytime soon, as she is busy filming her NBC drama Harry's Law.
Spader's character Robert California made an appearance on The Office last season, and his character's arc this season will take him from the new manager of the Scranton office to running the whole company at breakneck speed.
James has an energy that is completely his own, and 'The Office' has no tools for dealing with this guy. We're thrilled he's joining our cast, producer Paul Lieberstein said in a statment. (Lieberstein also plays HR manager and unwitting Michael Scott nemesis, Toby Flenderson, on the show).
James Spader is a rare actor who can move seamlessly from film to television and back again. He made a name for himself as a saleable actor in 80s teen movies like Pretty in Pink and Mannequin. His portrayal of Graham in sex, lies, and videotape is considered his critical breakthrough, and also demonstrated his penchant for playing offbeat, creepy but nonetheless likeable characters.
Spader worked steadily in film throughout the 1980s and 90s, and made his television debut in 1997 on Seinfeld, guest starring as a cantankerous former alcoholic who infuriates George Costanza.
His role in the 2001 movie Secretary as E. Edward Grey, a lawyer who sexually humiliates his assistant, won him a brand new audience of appreciative fans who may not have watched him in his earlier films. Shortly afterwards, David E. Kelley tapped him to join The Practice to replace Dylan McDermott . Spader later reprised his role of Alan Short on Boston Legal, which made him the only actor to win consective Emmys for the same character on different shows.