This story contains some potential spoilers for "The Office."
Emmy-winning actor James Spader could be setting up at "The Office" full-time next season, but not necessarily as a replacement for Steve Carell.
Spader, who is best known for his work in "Boston Legal," played the big-egoed Robert California in a guest spot on "The Office" last season. There, he was one of several big name actors brought in to interview for the job that Carell's character left behind after the actor departed from the show.
His character felt that the best way to sell paper was to use sex -- his tool to sell anything -- and when he was told he might be overqualified for the job, he turned to the interviewers and asked, "Do I look like someone who would waste his own time?"
But is Robert California overqualified? Absolutely. Reports from Entertainment Weekly's James Hibberd is that California will actually be hired to lead the Scranton office of Dunder Mifflin. However, as soon as he gets there, he will work his way almost immediately into the chief executive position, which is currently held by actress Kathy Bates.
Bates is said to be leaving the show so that she can devote her time to another NBC program (and it's top-rated scripted program) "Harry's Law."
Unlike Bates, however, Spader's role is said to be a regular role, and not just recurring.
That still leaves a big question mark on who will fill Carell's shoes on the show. With the hiring of one big-name actor, it could mean that the office itself promotes from within. Or the show could break the budget and bring in another name star, many reports centering around Catherine Tate, the British comedienne who gained a bit of American notoriety for her work in "Doctor Who."
The network still has a little time to decide as no scripts have been written yet for the next season.
"The Office" finished last season with a 4.2 rating/7 share, according to Fast National overnight ratings from The Nielsen Co. The numbers were down 8 percent from the previous year, but was still NBC's seventh highest-rated program, finishing No. 50 overall.
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