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‘The Office’ Gets Australian Version With Female-Lead, Production To Begin In June

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The famous comedy franchise “The Office”, originally created by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, will for the first time operate under the middle management of a woman, in its Australian version. This will mark the 13th replication of the show.

Felicity Ward, an Australian comedian and actor, who has previously starred in “Wakefield” and “The Inbetweeners 2”, will play Hannah Howard, the MD of Finley Craddick, a packaging company, in “The Office Australia”. As a post-COVID twist to the story, the head office informs Howard that her branch will be closing and the employees will be working from home. To survive, she makes unaffordable promises and executes bizarre schemes just to balance her “work family”.

The production of the eight-part series will begin in Sydney in June and the pre-production of the show is laid out by Prime Video, BBC Studios Australia and New Zealand, and Bunya Entertainment. The show will be branded as Amazon Original on Prime Video across the world, except in the United States, in 2024.

The cast of “The Office Australia” includes Edith Poor who starred in “The Power of the Dog”, Steen Raskopoulos from “The Duchess”, Shar Sebbens in “Thor: Love and Thunder”, Josh Thomson in “Young Rock”, Jonny Brugh in “What We Do in the Shadows”, Pallavi Sharda in “The Twelve”, Susan Ling Young in “Hungry Ghosts”, Raj Labade, Lucy Schmit, and Firass Dirani who has previously starred in “Underbelly”.

The co-creator, co-writer, and star of the original UK version of “The Office”, Gervais, said, “I’m very excited about Australia remaking my little show from the turn of the century. Office politics have changed a bit in 20 years, so can’t wait to see how they navigate a modern-day David Brent.”

The adaptation has been remade over 10 times in several parts of the world such as France, Canada, Chile, Israel, and the Middle East. But the American version of the show was by far the most famous with the cast including Steve Carell as Michael Scott, and Rainn Wilson as Dwight Schrute among others.

In a conversation with BBC in 2021, Gervais said he believes that The Office would lead to ‘cancel culture’ if it were to be streamed today. He said, “I’m looking forward to when they pick out one thing and try to cancel it. Someone said they might try to cancel it one day, and I say, ‘Good let them cancel it. I’ve been paid!’”

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