Should have just gone to Chili’s! Kevin Malone’s coworkers are probably still reeling over his chili disaster of 2008. In season 5 of The Office, the clumsy accountant dropped his famous recipe all over the office floor — and tried to salvage it with Pam’s files.
The scene, which has become one of the comedy’s standout moments, actually didn’t take long to shoot at all. The cleanup, however, is another story.
“One take. They call me the ‘One Take Wonder.’ Everyone calls me that,” Brian Baumgartner, who played Kevin for nine seasons, exclusively tells Us Weekly. “They had three pots. They had to put a piece of carpet over the other carpet. And so they had gigantic pieces, because it was a mess and they knew it was gonna be a mess. So three gigantic pieces.”
Baumgartner, 47, was told he only had “three chances” to nail the scene in the “Casual Friday” episode. “They came to me before and were like … ‘After that we’re done, there’s no more to do.’ But after doing it once, the hardest part was the actual spilling. Making sure that that looked real and it was. How filthy I was, like my hands were stained kind of [with] that chili brown color.”
Unfortunately, the smell of Kevin’s undercooked onions, garlic, diced tomatoes and ancho chilies also lingered.
“We went out after,” costar Angela Kinsey says. “Me and Brian and Oscar [Nuñez]. We did this for a long time. We still do. We try to have a reunion accountants dinner. And Oscar and I were waiting on Brian because he said he had to shower and wash his hands so many times. But when he got there, he reeked of chili.”
Baumgartner chimes in: “It was just brutal.”
The costars have also stayed close with holiday parties over the years. “I really fell in love with the whole Yankee Swap Christmas episode we did. So I started hosting, every year, my own Yankee Swap. And people would come and bring random gifts and wrap them. Who you want at a party like that is Oscar because he starts chants. He gets rowdy,” Kinsey, 48, notes.
He doesn’t, however, bring the best presents. “I [once] ended up with his gift because when you get stuff it’s just a crap shoot,” Baumgartner tells Us. “You’re supposed to come up with something creative, right? Like go somewhere and buy something interesting that has some value. He, no joke, literally went to his bookcase and just pulled old yearbooks.”
Kinsey adds: “It was just random. By the way, it was like a coffee mug from every place he’s ever been. Plus, a dog treat he clearly got for free. I’m like, ‘Oscar, what is this?’ And you got all of it. You got a box of crap.”
“I miss the people. The people, for sure. We work hard, a lot of us still stay in touch but you know, we have families and work and stuff. So it’s harder, but we do stay in touch and get to see each other,” Kinsey says. “I miss just walking to that little corner of accounting and plopping down, and talking about our weekend. And I had lunch with Jenna every day. I miss seeing those faces every day. She’s my best friend. And we both sorta say that we didn’t expect to find a friend that close where we were in life.”
It’s been rumored for years that The Office, which ended in 2013, could get a reboot. If it ever gets the green light, Baumgartner and Kinsey would be game.
“I love the characters. I’m a fan of the show. I have rewatched episodes and I really just think that it holds up. It’s funny and the relationships are so great. So I’m curious to know where these people are, and I don’t know if that’s a reboot or a special reunion,” Kinsey tells Us. “But I want to know, are Dwight and Angela running the crappiest bed and breakfast ever, where Mose destroys your luggage? I don’t know!”
For Kinsey, the script “would have to be just really smart.”
She adds: “I think if anyone could do it, [executive producer] Greg Daniels could do it.”