Given that you cared enough to click on this article, I am going to assume you are already aware that Steve Carell is leaving The Office at the end of this season (the show’s seventh). Last year there was some rumor milling about who might fill his shoes. Would it be Danny McBride? Would it be Flight of the Concords‘ Rhys Darby? We don’t know. But we now do know who will help bridge the gap…

Will Ferrell.

Deadline is reporting that Ferrell has committed to a four-episode arc, to start at the end of this season and have at least one episode continue on past Carell’s exit. He will play an obnoxious, loud-mouth (what else?) branch manager from the home office, who presumably is either the cause of Michael Scott’s departure or is simply there to facilitate the transition. Interestingly, Ferrell apparently came to the show’s producers himself to suggest the character. Executive Producer Paul Lieberstein (who also plays the morose Toby) says, “We are proud to continue The Office’s tradition of discovering famous talent, and we hope that once America gets a good look at Will, they’ll see what we see, tremendous raw sexuality.

The Office is mostly frustrating at this point. Once great, the series wore out its welcome around season five. Yet I keep watching, because mixed in amongst the tired rehashing of old bits and scenarios, there will usually be a near brilliant episode here and there (like 1 out of 5 eps, roughly). So just when I think I’m out… yadda yadda Pacino. Ferrell also mostly frustrates me at this point. Around the time of Anchorman he was one of my favorite comedic performers. Now I kind of dread seeing him pop up in anything. I loved his tiny cameos on 30 Rock, but he threatened to ruin season one of Eastbound and Down every time he appeared on camera. Yet, I can’t deny that this is some brilliant stunt casting on the part of The Office. This will put some butts in the DVR for sure.