Michael Ausiello
July 02, 2010 AT 04:00 AM EDT

News that Steve Carell intends to leave The Office at the end of the NBC comedy’s upcoming seventh season got us thinking: Who could replace Michael Scott? Some ideas…

Ricky Gervais If Michael’s precursor, British Office manager David Brent, could get a work visa to come over to the States, he’d be the funniest English export to land in Scranton since spotted dick.
Amy Ryan Her Holly Flax and Michael haven’t been able to truly reconnect ever since she was transferred from the Scranton office. What a tragicomic end to the romance if she were to return to Pennsylvania just as he left.
– Rainn Wilson A promotion to co-regional manager alongside rival Jim would be a dream come true for Dwight. And a nightmare come true for Jim. And then yet another dream come true for us. You see where we’re going, right?
– Michael Emerson The Lost alum can certainly play creepy. Plus, if he can keep those freaky Others in line, surely he can control the misfits at Dunder Mifflin.
– Craig Robinson We already know warehouse supervisor Darryl is ambitious — at least ambitious enough to like having an office upstairs. Perhaps he isn’t done climbing the corporate ladder? And perhaps he’d be even funnier at the top?
– David Cross Odds are he’ll never find another character as memorable as Tobias, the never-nude ”analrapist” he played on Arrested Development. But if any actor could make lightning strike twice, our money’s on him. A lot of our money.


Melrose vixen is Gossip‘s new girl
Spotted: the absolute best thing about The CW’s ill-fated Melrose Place reboot raising holy hell on the Upper East Side. As first reported on EW.com, Katie Cassidy is joining the cast of Gossip Girl as the show’s latest incendiary plot device.

”Her name is Juliet Sharp, and she’s a Columbia student who we’ll meet through [fellow undergrad] Nate [Chace Crawford],” explains executive producer Stephanie Savage, who says Cassidy is on board for a ”pretty long” arc. ”Things will get romantic between them, and she’ll make a lot of problems for the girls.”

Those girls being Serena (Blake Lively) and Blair (Leighton Meester), natch. ”When we had the idea for the role, we knew there was going to be a really short list of actresses who could stand up to Blake and Leighton on screen and in this story,” says Savage. ”And Katie felt like a great choice.”

Glee‘s next big get
Forget Emmy. Glee is generating some serious Oscar buzz. Academy Award winner Javier Bardem is in talks to appear this coming season as a rock star who befriends Artie (Kevin McHale). Bardem pitched the idea to Glee co-creator Ryan Murphy, with whom he worked on this summer’s Julia Roberts starrer Eat Pray Love. ”We’re going to rock the house,” enthuses Bardem, who became an unabashed Gleek after watching the entire first season in one week. ”We’re going to do some heavy metal, Spanish heavy metal, which is the worst.”

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