If you needed the news of Steve Carell's departure from The Office to get any more official, here you go: on his blog Ricky Gervais himself has given Carell his blessing as Carell leaves the show behind. It's not just a token gesture, as Gervais is also the executive producer of the American version of the show and stands to profit from it. Here's what Ricky had to say:

Well it's official. Steve Carell will leave The Office after this next season. It was of course inevitable (and sad), but I wish him all the luck in the world. He is quite possibly the nicest, hardest working man in America and it has been a joy working with him over the last six years. (And taking the piss out of him at every award show.) It was expected of me, as executive producer, to persuade him to stay on. With syndication in full swing the more successful the show remains, the more billions we all make. It was tempting, but the truth is, I believe he is doing the right thing. He's fulfilled his contract and more, and is a huge film star now. (I knocked it on the head after 12 episodes and a Christmas special.) I'd be lying if I said he should do more. He shouldn't. He should move on, continue to do great work, and buy a new house every time The Office is repeated somewhere. (That's what I do. Maybe I'll buy one next door to him one day. That'll fucking teach him.) Good Luck Steve.


Gervais seems to feel like many of us do, that Carell's departure could potentially benefit the show by breathing new creative life into the series. But he one-upped all of us and gave Carell a classy farewell. Way to always be on top of it, Ricky.

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