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October 3, 2015

The Office is going to Israel

by Brad Trechak, posted Mar 30th 2009 3:33PM
Ricky GervaisRicky Gervais and Stephen Merchant must be kvelling, as their BBC brainchild is being developed into its sixth foreign version. This time, David Brent (or whatever the character's name will be) and his paper company will be located in Israel.

Given the political climate in that area of the world, one has to wonder what their office will be like? Will it be shared by Jews and Arabs? Which religion will the central "boss" character be? Will that even come into play?

This is further proof of the universality of the original concept. Some day, I would like to see the pilot of every version of The Office shown back-to-back. Or maybe the best episodes of each. Someone should teach a class somewhere about cultural differences using each version of The Office as examples.

Let me end this with a suitable quote from Ricky Gervais that gives his reaction to an Israeli version of his show: "Who ever heard of Jewish entertainers?"

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The chutzpa!

March 30 2009 at 5:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's at least the seventh.

The german version is called "Stromberg".

March 30 2009 at 4:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to StillBash's comment

Stromberg's only official connection to the office is an 'inspired by' credit given to Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant and even then they had to sue to get that credit and financial compensation.

If you take wikipedia's word, and a grain of salt, then you have the following countries that have an official series:

U.K. (Original)

Canada (French-Canadian)

You can now add Israel to that list which makes six.

These are only the officially announced licensed versions of 'The Office'. I don't know if all these series have actually been produced or not.

If you also want to include the German version, then you would have to include the Brazilian show 'Os Aspones' which takes a lot from 'The Office' and probably many other rip off shows that have no official licensing.

March 30 2009 at 6:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Yeah I read the WP article after posting and had a real hard time counting the amount of "licensed" versions too - especially because in the later part of the article it starts listing the new licensing countries by year whereas it doesn't mention Russia at the top at all - so about the produced shows I think it's the five given at the top.

I didn't think that Pro7 (the german network producing "Stromberg") had the guts to simply copy it without licensing the show. In the end this is all just a different label - they didn't license it, now they added another tag and financially Gervais and Merchant are "very happy" - so I guess it's basically the same just with a different label.

Whatever. I was a wiseass in the first place so sorry Brad for being a wiseass :-)

I'm getting my stitches removed now. Yay! :-)

March 31 2009 at 4:05 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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