NBC and producers of “The Office” are pulling out all the stops for the finale of this pivotal seventh season, lining up several major guest stars for the final episode, Entertainment Weekly reports.
EW reveals that Ricky Gervais and Will Arnett will appear in the finale.
What will they be doing? The episode is still being written. The one-hour episode will air May 19, have Mr. Gervais appearing on the show for the second time, and have Mr. Arnett appearing for the first time. Other notable guests will appear as well.
Sources did warn that it shouldn’t be assumed that just because Mr. Gervais and Mr. Arnett are in the finale, either is going to replace Steve Carell next season as the “Office” boss.
“The Office” is also returning after a few weeks of hiatus on Thursday with a major Michael Scott-centered episode titled “Garage Sale.” The setup is that Dunder Mifflin will have a garage sale in the warehouse.
Writers reach deal
The union representing more than 12,000 writers of Hollywood-made movies and TV shows has agreed to a tentative deal with the studios.
The three-year agreement reached Sunday by the Writers Guild of America follows similar pacts reached in the Past several months by two actors unions and the directors union. It locks in 2 percent wage increases for each year of the deal. West Coast and East Coast branches will need to approve the deal before it is sent to members for ratification.
The agreement came after less than three weeks of bargaining, a stark contrast to the dragged-out disputes of years past. A writers strike in 2008 shut down much of Hollywood for 100 days. In 2009, actors signed a shortened two-year pact after a year of public feuding.
The writers’ new deal increases employers’ contributions to a pension plan but freezes so-called residual payments for shows that end up on network TV during prime time. It also eases rules that had mandated first-class air travel for certain short flights.
Sitcom vets returning
Count Fran Drescher of “The Nanny” and Wayne Knight of “Seinfeld” among the TV veterans returning in new sitcoms, Associated Press reports.
TV Land network has announced that Miss Drescher will be back on the air with “Happily Divorced.” She will star as a florist who deals with dating after finding out her husband is gay. The network said Monday that “Happily Divorced” will premiere June 15.
A second new sitcom, “The Exes,” stars Mr. Knight as one of three divorced men who share an apartment across the hall from their divorce attorney, played by Kristen Johnston of “3rd Rock From the Sun.” It is slated to premiere next winter, along with a second season of “Retired at 35.”
TV Land said its first original sitcom, “Hot in Cleveland,” which stars Betty White and Valerie Bertinelli, will be back with new episodes in June.