NBC released the cold open, which was cut for time, to celebrate the show's debut on Peacock.
The Office
Hugh Dane and Rainn Wilson on 'The Office'
| Credit: Peacock
Michael Scott, The Office (Steve Carell)

The Office's series finale, which aired on NBC in 2013, almost had a different opening. Jim (John Krasinski) and Pam (Jenna Fischer) executed an epic prank on Dwight (Rainn Wilson) to trick him into thinking himself inside the Matrix, as depicted in the Wachowski siblings' 1999 sci-fi movie. Those who saw footage of the cast's table read for the finale saw the actors walk through the scene. But now, to celebrate the show's move from Netflix to its own streaming platform, Peacock, NBC has officially released the never-before-seen cold open online.

The late Hugh Dane, the actor behind security guard Hank who died in 2018, can be seen dressed as Dorpheus, the supposed brother of Morpheus who presents Dwight with a red pill and a blue pill. All their hard work to pull off this epic ruse begins to fall apart when Dwight chooses to stay in the Matrix and Hank all of a sudden realizes those pills might not be safe to ingest.

Brian Baumgartner, who played Kevin on the show, discussed this cold open on an episode of his podcast An Oral History of the Office with editor Dave Rogers, who said the sequence was cut for time.

"There's a cat that walks by and a cat walks by again in Michael's office, and Jenna goes, 'It took six months to train the cat,'" Rogers recalled in the eleventh episode. "And then we have the security guard walk by, it was the big guy, and he had a twin brother and we used him also, as a glitch. And then he's gonna take the red pill or the blue pill."

The first two seasons of The Office are free to watch on Peacock starting today, though the rest of the show is available to Peacock subscribers. The platform also comes with additional behind-the-scenes material, including Superfan Episodes, which are extended cuts episodes, beginning in season 3, with previously unseen scenes.

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Michael Scott, The Office (Steve Carell)
The Office

The mockumentary-style sitcom chronicles a group of typical office employees working 9-5 at the Scranton branch of the Dunder Mifflin Paper Company.

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