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Whenever Pam smiled at the camera, the real camera operator couldn’t help but smile back

Pam Beesly gives the camera a variety of looks during her time The office. Gives the camera pained looks, like Are you kidding me? Is this really happening? He sneaks glances at the camera when he’s up to something mischievous. And, perhaps more often, it makes the camera flash that distinctive Pam smile.

According to Jenna Fischer (the woman behind Pam), when the actors glanced at the camera, they were actually acting for someone. And, often, the person behind the camera would genuinely react to whatever was happening in the scene, even if they weren’t actors.

Jenna Fischer as Pam Beesly | Chris Haston / NBCU Photo Bank / NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images
Jenna Fischer as Pam Beesly | Chris Haston / NBCU Photo Bank / NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

Meet: Randall Einhorn, “The Office” camera operator

When Fischer was interviewed by NPR in 2008, she was asked about the looks of her and others Office the actors give the camera. Are they looking at a real person?

“Is there an actor back there that you can, like, interact with?” asked host Terry Gross. “Or is it just, like, the camera with a person doing the camera?”

It depended on the scene.

“Well, there are two different scenarios,” Fischer replied. “When we’re just shooting the show and it’s a scene, the camera operator is this man named Randall Einhorn. And he’s our cinematographer. And we’re going to look at him, look at him, or look at him in the camera. And he became another character or another actor on the show for us. So, we actually act with him. “

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Over the years, Einhorn has grown to root for the character of Pam. He always reciprocated when she smiled at him.

“It’s really cute – every time Pam smiles at the camera, Randall can’t help but smile,” she said. “Man, Randall, smiles at you as he holds the camera. And there are scenes we did that were really touching. And you’re going to look at Randall, and he’ll be, you know, a little bit in tears.”

In their interviews with the talking head, the actors of “The Office” spoke to the director

The office is filled with interviews from Dunder Mifflin employees. It’s how we learn how the characters really feel about things. They are also a gold mine for bits. When the actors filmed their interviews, they were actually talking to the director about the episode.

“When we turn our talking heads – our interview segments – the director of the episode acts as the documentary maker for that week,” Fischer explains. “Some of the directors, we have them again, and again, and again.”

One director Fischer really connected with in particular was Ken Kwapis.

“He directed our first episode, and he comes back every year and directs a couple of episodes. And last year he directed the finale. And he has always shown a particular interest in Pam and her journey. So, I feel very close to him, “he said.

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During one episode, Pam made Kwapis cry during her interview with the talking head.

“When Jim broke into the conference room while Pam was granting an interview, and finally asked her out on a date, I turned to the camera. And the moment they used it, I feel a little bit crying.” he said. “And the reason I cried was because when I looked at the camera again, I saw Ken Kwapis. And he – his eyes were filled with tears. And he smiled at me and winked at me, like, it’s true. You finally got what you wanted, honey. “

“And it was just, oh, it was a really powerful moment between me and the director,” he continued. “So that’s interesting. There’s a lot of acting on the show that’s with our crew members … you know, it doesn’t normally happen when you’re shooting a movie or a TV show.”

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