Angela Kinsey, <EM>The Office</EM> Angela Kinsey, The Office

For the record, we understand that NBC's The Office (Thursdays at 8:30 pm/ET) is a fictional show, and that its characters are portrayed by actors. Still, that doesn't make it any less surprising to learn that Angela Kinsey, the woman behind Dunder-Mifflin's stern, judgmental stick-in-the-mud accountant Angela Martin, is very nearly the sweetest actress ever to grace our phone lines. She called us this week to chat about her prim-and-proper alter ego, whose romance with assistant regional manager Dwight (Rainn Wilson) has been heating up. (Well, as much as any romance involving the ice queen can "heat up.") Hi, how are you?
Angela Kinsey: I'm good, lady! You sound so nice and friendly.
Kinsey: So unlike the sourpuss I play? Exactly. What's it like to play that other Angela?
Kinsey: Oh, my gosh, it is so much fun! My friends always say my name is "Angela Sorry," because I'm always like, "I'm sorry!" I'm Southern, so to play someone who's not sorry ever is a lot of fun. People ask my husband all the time, "Does she give you those glares?" Of course, he loves to say that I practice it at home. How did you convince the Office producers that you could play Angela?
Kinsey: I am acting, lady! I think we've all worked with that person at the office who takes themselves and their job so seriously. I sort of compiled all those people together to form this lady. Did you do anything especially severe for your audition?
Kinsey: I first went in for the role of Pam, which I know is very hard for people to believe. Obviously, Jenna Fischer is so perfect, and I cannot even imagine Pam as anyone but Jenna. But they did bring me back for this role of a judgmental lady in accounting. I pretty much wore no makeup, pulled my hair back in a really low ponytail, and wore a gray turtleneck and gray pants. I sort of channeled the uptight librarian. Do you have some input with the styling of your character?
Kinsey: The gal who does my hair, Kimberly, is awesome. She and I sit there and say, "We haven't seen a bun in a while," or "We haven't tried a French braid," "Oh, let's go crazy and do a ponytail!" This season Angela's in a relationship, so she's stepped it up a little bit as much as Angela Martin can step it up, which is maybe not a slicked-back bun, but a soft, low bun! Is it weird that she has your name?
Kinsey: Oh, my gosh, yes! Just last weekend I went out with my husband for sushi at this restaurant where you had to go through this rowdy karaoke bar to get to the bathroom. So I'm walking through and this guy goes "Angela!" in such a way that I was like, "Oh, I know him." I walked up and he goes, "When are you and Dwight gonna make it official?!" People call out my name and every time it happens, it throws me. Are there any backstories you've invented for Angela?
Kinsey: I've given myself little fun things. Like in the pilot episode, I gave myself the backstory that she had probably adopted a cat that she had found in the parking lot and named it Sprinkles and was going to have a birthday party for it. I think that she is probably really serious about her Tupperware like, she probably puts her initials on all of her Tupperware, and if you borrow it, she writes it down. And I think she probably really likes to mall walk, because she doesn't have to go out in the cold or get a suntan. How did she and Dwight get together in the first place?
Kinsey: I remember when we were at the table read for the "Jim's Party" episode [when their relationship was revealed], Rainn and I just started cracking up. He said to me, "It just makes such perfect sense." They have this dance they do with each other. They both crave power and authority, they take life and their jobs really seriously, and they're really militant and like to follow lots of rules. Are they going to come out as a couple anytime soon?
Kinsey: I will say that there will be some really fun Dwight-and-Angela moments in Season 3 that won't disappoint. That's about as much as I can say. I understand we're going to meet Dwight's cousin, Mose, sometime soon?
Kinsey: I just spoke to B.J. Novak (Ryan), who wrote this week's episode, and he said we will get to see Mose.... We're going to get to see a little of the beet farm [in this week's episode]. I have been pitching the writers that we need to see Dwight, Mose and Angela together, because I feel that Mose would be like their child in some weird way. Does the cast get to suggest things about their characters?
Kinsey: The writers are very open to the actors and to our interpretation of what we think our character would do in that moment. Jenna and I have both worked in corporate America Jenna was a secretary, and I was an operator at 1-800-DENTIST and we were talking about some of the silly seminars we had to go to. We were saying, "Wouldn't it be fun if there was a 'Women in the Workplace' seminar, where Jan would come in and work with the female members of the show?" The writers took that idea and did an amazing script with it. What was it like filming the accountants' webisodes?
Kinsey: We had so much fun! Brian Baumgartner, Oscar Nunez and I were cracking up. [During regular filming] we sort of cruise through our scenes, and then we can enjoy being the "audience" on the set. So when we did the webisodes, all of a sudden we were in every scene! We filmed them all in two days. By the end of the day, I couldn't hold a thought in my head. I could not stop laughing. I hope they do more things like that. I think it's a fun way to show the other people in the office, 'cause who knows what's going on in human resources back there with Kelly and Toby? When you're strapped to your desk on the set, what do you do?
Kinsey: I play solitaire. And we have [Instant Messenger] set up, so I IM Jenna and Brian and B.J. And Jenna, Brian, Kate, B.J. and I are all on MySpace, so I update my MySpace page. It's nice that they give you real computers, so you don't have to be fake-typing all day.
Kinsey: It is! In Season 1, we didn't have them, so Brian and Oscar and I passed notes all day. We were like a bunch of third-graders. Is there anything else we can see you in soon?
Kinsey: This summer I did a movie with John Krasinski, Mandy Moore and Robin Williams, called License to Wed. If you're an Office fan, you should definitely check it out. Brian Baumgartner has a role in it, and so does Mindy Kaling. And if I didn't get cut out, you'll see me as well. The director of the movie, Ken Kwapis, directed a lot of Office episodes. It'll be out in July. Are you in line to do a blog for us here at
Kinsey: Oh, yeah. I know Kate [Flannery, Meredith] is doing one now. And I really enjoyed Brian's and Jenna's. After I read Jenna's, she had talked to me about it, and I said, "Jenna, everything you talked about is exactly what I'd talk about." So I've got to wait and get some distance.

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