For Jenna Fischer, playing “Pam” for nine seasons in The office apparently it was a blessing and a curse.
In the last episode of her Office ladies podcast, Fischer eventually split tea on why she was recast after shooting a pilot for Man with a plan a show with Friends star Matt LeBlanc, who played Joey Tribbiani in that long-running comedy.
According to Fischer, she lost the role of LeBlanc’s wife when test hearings couldn’t go beyond seeing Pam and Joey. They didn’t “think Pam would marry Joey.”
Fischer said the network’s executives initially asked for “more scenes” with her. But the driver and the focus group reaction spoiled that opportunity.
“They said, this is a literal quote, they said, ‘I don’t think Pam would marry Joey. The chemistry doesn’t work between these two, ‘”Fischer told him. Office ladies co-host Angela Kinsey. “That was the response they received.”
“Could they only see you as Pam and Joey?” asked Kinsey, who played Angela Martin in The office.
“Yes,” Fischer said. “So it didn’t work for them to get married and have a family.”
The network broke the news to Fischer just before she headed to New York for the upfronts.
“The first thing I said was: ‘It’s [Man with a Plan] not be picked up? And they said, ‘It’s worse than that, honey.’ And I was like, ‘What’s worse than that?’ They said: ‘They are going to pick it up, but without you.’ And I was like, ‘Wow, I guess I’ll unpack my suitcase.’
Man with a plan It ran for four seasons from 2016 to 2020 on CBS, with Liza Snyder starring alongside LeBlanc.