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I am – Hercules!!

This is the word from the world of talent agents. Don’t send us your directors, your writers, your guest stars, they are telling directors, writers and actors. NBC doesn’t want the Americanized “Office.”

NBC will likely go with a lot more “Fear Factor” and “Average Joe”-type stuff this fall. Which is cheap and brings in “the numbahs”!

We’re told that if we see the American “Office” pilot at all, it will be at midseason, and on Bravo, home of “The Queer Eye.”

NBC formally announces its autumn schedule May 17, one week from Monday.

Readers Talkback
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  • All I can say is thank God. Show the British version. It's brilliant. And a Golden Globe winner for Chrissakes!

  • May 9, 2004, 3:05 a.m. CST

    If it ain't broke don't fix it...

    by RaylanGivens

    ....and there's no way to improve on the Merchant/Gervais original. It lives up to all the hype. Absolute genius.

  • May 9, 2004, 3:33 a.m. CST

    I'm not really sure what to think...

    by AndrewWanKenobi

    Supposedly it has Gervais and Merchant's blessing... Why would they do anything to undermine the original? I want to trust their judgement......... On the other hand, it really sounds like it's gonna blow chunks. I like Steve Carell, not he's no Ricky Gervais. I wish I could find the pilot on the web (as we all did with "Wonderfalls")... hint, hint.----Then again, it probably doesn't matter as the show will never catch on here in the States be cancelled within a month, regardless of how "good or bad" it is.

  • May 9, 2004, 3:35 a.m. CST

    same thing happened with Red dwarf. Why oh why can't America jus

    by TheGinger Twit

  • May 9, 2004, 7:41 a.m. CST

    This is good news

    by Shawn F.

    I just picked up the two seasons out on DVD and watched the first couple of episodes. Brilliant! Hearing that NBC may not do an Americanization of the show after all? Even better. Leave well enough alone, NBC.

  • May 9, 2004, 9:03 a.m. CST

    the lesson to be learnt from Coupling was pretty straightforward

    by Captain Katanga

    if you remake a shit english show youll end up with a shit american show. Im english and i always like to go on an anti coupling rant. lest you guys think that that show is well loved in Blighty. It isnt. Rant over.

  • May 9, 2004, 12:41 p.m. CST

    Is there a single trans-Atlantic translation which has worked?

    by fitzcarraldo2

    There is a long list of failures and I can't think of a single success... Coupling was a crap American version of a crap British show which was itself a rip-off of Friends.

  • May 9, 2004, 1:25 p.m. CST

    Successful Transatlantics

    by globherman

    Fitzcarraldo - yes, there have been several notable US adaptations of UK comedies: "Three's Company" was based on the BBC programme "Man About The House", "Sanford and Son" was taken from the BBC's "Steptoe and Son" and "All in the Family" was adapted from "Til Death Do Us Part." All popular UK sitcoms that became very popular US sitcoms. But the US Office is sure to be rubbish. :p

  • May 9, 2004, 5:38 p.m. CST

    Other successful U.K.-to-U.S. translations

    by RonnieBarzel

    It's not a sitcom, but the U.K.'s "Changing Rooms" has been very successful in the U.S. in the form of "Trading Spaces." Also, the "Will It Float?" segment on Letterman is based on the English segment "Is It Buoyant?"

  • May 9, 2004, 7 p.m. CST

    All the successful remakes...

    by Ogi-Wan

    Hey kids... let's not forget about all the great TV series that the BBC created and we successfully adapted to American TV. Here's a brief list: Lord Fludderbottom and his Chimp Mate = BJ & the Bear Hermoine Granger and the bloddy tossers that help her out = Buffy the Vampire Slayer Absolutely Fabulous = Bevis and Butthead Dr. Who = That infomercial for the 'space bag' packing system Bob the Builder = Spongebob Squarepants (A.K.A. I'm so friggin wasted and have the munchies, dude.) So let's not be quick to say that the remakes don't work...

  • May 9, 2004, 7:06 p.m. CST

    The boards reformat my post.

    by Ogi-Wan

    Makes me look like a rambling fool...

  • May 9, 2004, 7:24 p.m. CST

    Part of me is happy since the show will suck compared to the ori

    by Big Bad Clone

    Actual, you can see that they do know funny. Just look at Scrubs. But they know that funny doesn't equal ratings. Simple, set up and sex joke shows with amped up laughtracks and scantily clad broads equal ratings. That's why they were perplexed that Coupling didn't work. Frankly I'd love to see a show about an entertainment reporter that had back room banter a la Dick Van Dyke and had the guy trying to date. It's simple, can go anywhere and you can build good characters. Plus plenty of celebs can show up as themselves for quick, funny cameos. It fucking writes itself. Shit, that pitch is funnier than their whiole Tuesday night sitcom lineup. Of course, a episode of L&O SVU is funnier than their whole Tues. night sitcom lineup.

  • May 10, 2004, 3:24 a.m. CST

    The British show is cancelled.

    by Steal_Dragon

    So A) it wasn't as big of a hit as everyone thought it was, or B) It was cancelled because Gervis didn't want to do it any more, and I don't know why? In Great Britain, the tv shows are only 6 episodes a season and it isn't even every year. Some British shows go on 2, 3, 4 years until another season is brought to the tv. Also,he isn't exactly Tom Cruise, so he won't get a lot of movie offers in the near future. He looked a gift horse in the mouth. With all the hype "The Office" got, you would think he would want to go on doing it for a long time. "Red Dwarf" started in 1988 and is still running strong. "Absolutely Fabulous" started in 1992, and it is still going strong.

  • May 11, 2004, 8:53 a.m. CST

    You're an idiot Dragon.

    by TigerTiger

    Red Dwarf went shit after series 5 and Ab Fab should have stopped long ago. Gervais stopped The Office because he knew that if it went on any longer it was going to become tired - the same reason John Cleese refused to do more than two series of Fawlty Towers.

  • May 11, 2004, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Hooray! So now ABC/Disney Can Pick it Up!

    by Damitol

    Of course ABC/Disney will have to sanitize it, do it three camera before a live audience, make the Ricky Gervais character the sane and stable one, reacting to his wacky office staff, add some pop tunes to the soundtrack and guarantee each episode ends with a positive message (Help those less fortunate - and also buy the new Hillary Duff album) - but otherwise it will be EXACTLY like the original, only the laugh track will make it even funnier! They could even improve on the title, like

  • May 11, 2004, 12:35 p.m. CST

    Oh, thank Christ!

    by Dr. Sid Schaefer

    You cannot replicate the success of a show that was largely improvised by its hugely talented cast. I mean, really! Ricky Gervais IS The Office! Would you prefer a network version of Curb Your Enthusiasm with Jim Belushi in the lead?

  • May 11, 2004, 12:40 p.m. CST

    Remember the ABC version of CRACKER?

    by Gul Shah

    What a piece of shit! The original version (Robbie Coltrane) was genius! The whole point was that the main character was an alcoholic, fat, selfish compulsive gambler with a brilliant mind. In the American version, they wouldn't even let him SMOKE! So, it's not just "shit British shows" that make "shit American shows." Even great British shows make shit American shows sometimes. (Steptoe & Son and Till Death Do Us Part excepted, of course.)