The Office has released online the full and interrupted version of Threat Level Midnight, the 25-minute film directed, scripted, produced by and starring Michael Scott (Steve Carell). An 11-year effort, Threat Level Midnight stars the employees of Michael’s workplace Dunder Mifflin and was first screened for the office and Michael’s future wife Holly (Amy Ryan) in Season 7 episode “Threat Level Midnight,” directed by Tucker Gates and written by series star and producer B.J. Novak. The 24-minute version of Threat Level Midnight reinserts an original deleted scene showing Carrell’s Michael, acting as Michael Scarn, and Rainn Wilson’s Dwight, acting as his robotic butler, telling the viewers to “go home” as a parody of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.
“It was truly fun and exciting and wonderful to work on this episode,” Novak previously told Office Tally. “It was incredible to bring back Rashida Jones (who said it felt like a time warp when she got the phone call asking for her availability on The Office); it was incredible to have David Denman back [as Roy], sitting next to Pam in her Season Two hair, and Melora Hardin back in Jan-as-diva mode.”
He continued, “And incredibly fun to put our minds back in that world and really believe in it again and add to that backstory. In that way it was more than a reunion, it was one in which you somehow seemed to actually go back in time.”
Beyond the cameo returns of Jones’ Karen, Denman’s Roy, and Hardin's Jan, Threat Level Midnight brought back David Koechner as Todd Packer (David Koechner), Helene Beesly (Linda Purl) and even the little-seen Tony Gardner (Mike Bruner) in cameo appearances.
“Imagine if at a high school reunion, they not only brought everyone back together, but also made you wear the exact same clothes again, cut your hair the same way, sit in the same seats and act out the same relationships and study for the same exams again,” Novak said. “And imagine that you really loved high school.” The episode also allowed The Office’s various departments to “show off its talents.”
“Since the premise was that Michael had put his energy into a jaw-droopingly elaborate and expensive and in many ways misguided film project over the course of many years, every department got to be really creative, and that made for a really exciting energy on set,” Novak said.
All episodes of The Office are currently available for streaming on Netflix. Follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.