The Office starring…Tony Soprano?

Yes, that almost happened.

It’s legitimately hard to find a person who hasn’t watched The Office and the show has garnered a dedicated following of die-hard fans who continue to take daily trips to Scranton even more than a decade later. However, someone totally unexpected almost sat in the regional manager’s chair after Steve Carell’s departure.

Near the end of Season 7, who would be taking over for Michael Scott was still very much in the air and the show played with this uncertainty by introducing a few guest stars like Will Farrell, Will Arnett, and even Jim Carrey, but they all left just as quickly as they got there.

It has been revealed by co-star Steve Schirripa in a recent Talking Sopranos podcast that none other than Tony Soprano himself, James Gandolfini, was offered the manager’s chair for Season 8. So why didn’t we see him? Well, in that same podcast, Schirripa went on to explain HBO actually paid Gandolfini $3 million not to take the role.

Even though The Sopranos ended in 2007 and Season 8 of The Office wouldn’t air until 2011, it seems HBO didn’t think that was enough of a buffer to ensure Tony’s image was kept intact.

As much as we all would have loved to see this odd casting in action, it’s hard to blame someone for taking a few million dollars to not do any work!

Featured image courtesy of Netflix via