'The Office' hires Will Ferrell for guest arc

will-ferrell-gi-320.jpg "The Office" is bringing in a big name to help in the transition surrounding Steve Carell's departure. Will Ferrell will guest on several episodes of the show later this season.

Ferrell -- who co-starred with Carell in "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy" -- will play a fellow Dunder Mifflin/Sabre manager who comes to Scranton and proves to be just as clueless as Michael (Carell) is. NBC hasn't said yet when Ferrell will make his first appearance, but it sure sounds as though the character will be part of the story involving Michael's departure. ( Update, 8:01 p.m. ET: A rep for NBC confirms Ferrell's run ties into Michael leaving.)

"We found Steve Carell when he was nothing but a movie star and we turned him into a television star," executive producer/Toby Paul Lieberstein quips. "We are proud to continue 'The Office's' tradition of discovering famous talent, and we hope that once America gets a good look at Will, they'll see what we see: tremendous raw sexuality."

Ferrell made a couple of brief cameos on "30 Rock" last year and has guested on HBO's "Eastbound & Down" (which he also executive produces), but his stint on "The Office" will mark his longest TV run since he left "Saturday Night Live" 2002.
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