Fischer was famously let go from Man With a Plan because focus groups didn't like seeing Pam from The Office married to Joey from Friends.
Advertisement

Sometimes your chums from The Office become the best friends of all.

When Jenna Fischer was fired from the Matt LeBlanc-starring CBS sitcom Man with a Plan back in 2016, she was ready for a drastic hair change. Luckily, her former Office costar (and current Office Ladies podcast cohost) Angela Kinsey was there to talk her down.

Fischer explained on the latest episode of Office Ladies how Kinsey saved her from giving herself bangs, after her managers, agents, and reps called with the bad news just days before she was set to head to New York for upfronts.

"The first thing I said was, 'Is [Man With a Plan] not getting picked up?'" Fischer recounted of that fateful call. "And they said, 'It's worse than that, hun.' And I was like, 'What's worse than that?' They said, 'It's getting picked up, but without you.' And I was like, 'Wow, I guess I'll unpack my suitcase… Yeah, I almost cut bangs in my hair that day… You stopped me."

That's what friends are for, Kinsey said.

"I didn't want you to cut your hair that day," Kinsey recalled. "I said, 'You know what? Let's pick a different day. Let's pick a different day to change your whole look.'"

Jenna Fischer/Matt LeBlanc
Jenna Fischer and Matt LeBlanc
| Credit: Chris Haston/NBCU; NBCU Photo Bank

Fischer has shared the story of losing the gig playing LeBlanc's wife on Man With a Plan before — including in her 2017 memoir — but she repeated it the podcast (it's too good not to).

"I got hired, I shot the pilot," Fischer said. "While I was there, the network said they wanted more scenes with me. I was like, 'I am nailing it!' More scenes means you're doing a good job. Well, I guess after we finished it, they showed it to focus groups."

"And they didn't like you?" Kinsey asked, laughing.

They liked Fischer just fine. It was the pairing of the woman from The Office, with the notoriously "How you doin'?" single guy from Friends that proved a difficult sell.

"They said — this is a literal quote, they said, 'I don't believe Pam would marry Joey. The chemistry doesn't work between these two,'" Fischer said. "That was the feedback they got."

"They could only see you as Pam and Joey?" Kinsey asked.

"Yeah," Fischer replied. "So it wasn't working for them that we got married and had a family."

In all fairness, Pam and Jim (John Krasinski) from The Office remain one of the greatest TV couples of all time.

Fischer had kind words for LeBlanc on her podcast, saying he was "very nice," and back in 2016, LeBlanc told EW the decision wasn't his. "Jenna's a good actor. She did a good job," he said. "The network felt like the chemistry wasn't right between her and me, and that decision was above my pay grade."

Related Content:


Comments have been disabled on this post