In some alternate universe, there's a version of NBC's long-running, Emmy-award-winning series The Office starring Bob Odenkirk as Michael Scott, Seth Rogen as Dwight Schrute, and Kathryn Hahn as Pam Beesly. Also in this parallel universe, Adam Scott and John Cho play separate aspects of the cracked psyche of Jim Halpert. It's kind of a weird universe. For those having a hard time visualizing any of that, just take a look at some old audition tapes, below, from the original casting session. The clips will be included on the upcoming The Office season 9 DVD.
Back in 2003 when the tapes were recorded, Mr. Show had been cancelled by HBO, and Odenkirk was still relatively unknown to non-comedy geeks. (It's worth noting that for about one hot minute he was actually cast in the pilot as Michael, but was quickly dropped when the previously unavailable Steve Carrell became un-unavailable.) Rogen, four years away from Knocked Up, had at this point passed virtually unnoticed across TV screens on the under-appreciated Freaks & Geeks and Undeclared. Scott was toiling away in bit parts, Hahn was a regular on the forgettable Crossing Jordan, and Cho wasn't even the guy from Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle yet. Had chance fallen just a little differently for this alternative Office cast, maybe they wouldn't all be the pathetically unfamous losers that they are today.
Send your Great Job, Internet tips to GJI@avclub.com