Mindy Kaling, the actress who plays Kelly on NBC’s comedy, The Office, has been known to express her love for Pixar. On Twitter, she has often dropped references to the studio and their films. Back in October, she tweeted her desire to use a Pixar character in an episode of The Office:
Dear Pixar, we adore you. Please let us use a doll of one of your most amazing characters in our Christmas episode, which I wrote.
— Mindy Kaling (@mindykaling) October 5, 2010
It was retweeted many times and it seems that people from the animation studio took notice. Yesterday, months after the original tweet, Toy Story 3 director Lee Unkrich sent out a slightly mysterious tweet:
I'm really looking forward to seeing 'The Office' Christmas special tomorrow night. Just sayin'.
— Lee Unkrich (@leeunkrich) December 9, 2010
Looking at these two tweets together, it looks like we may very well have an appearance by a certain lovable Pixar character. The possibilities are endless. Small cameo or major part of the story? Viewing how much admiration Kaling has displayed towards Pixar, and considering she wrote the episode, hopefully it will be a fun appearance. We’ll have to wait and see what happens!
The Office Christmas Special airs on NBC tonight at 9 pm EST.
UPDATE 1 (12/10/10 12:45 am): As expected, a Pixar character did make an appearance on tonight’s episode of The Office. As video won’t show up online until tomorrow, I’ll be giving a breakdown of the episode below, so consider this a very strong SPOILER ALERT. That means if you have not watched this episode of The Office, and were waiting to watch it, you should probably turn back now as major plot points are dealt with.
Still here? Ok. Here’s what happened.
UPDATE 2 (12/10/10 1:00 pm): Links to the full-screen videos added here. (Note: I have aligned the clips to the exact start and end points of the Pixar-related portions.)
Holly, Michael’s old flame returned to The Office tonight. As she unpacks her belongings, she removes a Woody doll from her box.
Michael, who is standing next to her starts the following conversation:
Michael: Aand, you have a Woody. Baaa. (Laughs)
Holly: A.J. gave me that.
Michael: (Mumbling) Well, that’s understandable. Still raw. (Silence) Woody your favorite character?
Holly: Mm, hmm.
Michael: You know who my favorite character in Toy Story is? Andy’s mom.
Michael: Because without Andy’s mom, there’s no plot, and without any plot there is no movie.
Holly: That is a really good point. A.J. said he hadn’t seen any of the Toy Story movies.
Michael: You’re kidding me.
Holly: No, I know. I was like, “What? Are you serious?”
Michael: What a douche-bag!
Holly: Get a life!
Michael: Get a li – good riddance.
Holly: We sat down. We watched them all in one day. Now he’s the biggest Toy Story fanatic ever.
Michael: Good for him.
Holly: Next day I found him in my bed.
Michael: Really? That’s creepy. How did A.J. get in your house?
Holly: We live together.
Michael: Oh. You do?
Holly: He had a little note pinned to him (motions to Woody) that said, “You’ve got a friend in me.”
Michael: (Awkwardly) Yeah, Randy Newman’s the best.
Holly: I love him.
Michael: Me too.
Later on in the episode, Michael dumps Woody in the garbage (!) and pours coffee on him. Upon finding Woody in the trash, Holly confronts the office staff to find out who threw him in the trash. Within the argument, the following conversation takes place:
Kevin: Wait, wait, guys. Listen. Toy Story is all about toys that come to life when people aren’t looking. You don’t think…it’s not possible?…that Woody did this to himself?
Michael: It is Christmas.
Angela: No, it really seems like something Michael would do.
Michael: Well, the fact that you would think that points to the possibility that it is probably not me, and that I have been framed.
Andy: Why would anyone frame you for that?
Jim: Ok, I’m sorry. Why are we discounting this whole ‘Woody came to life’ thing so quickly?
A bit later on, Michael washes Woody in the bathroom. In order to dry Woody’s clothes, he hangs some of the doll’s clothes on a clothing line in the bathroom.
Cute stuff. Woody’s usage throughout the episode was hilarious. A great way to show the effect Pixar has had on pop culture!