Jim and Pam, meet Yossi and Dana: an Israeli remake of The Office, Ricky Gervais’s brilliant BBC sitcom—whose U.S. version is currently in its sixth season on NBC—is slated to air in the coming months.
But the Israeli Office may be home to more than just bumbling, affable paper salesmen. One of the show’s lead writers, reportedly, is Uzi Weill, the creator of some of Israel’s fiercest political satires—his hit 1990s show, Ha’hamishiya Ha’kamerit, frequently poked fun at such sensitive topics as the Holocaust, Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination, and the Israel Defense Force. And the new Office, it seems, will follow the same provocative path: according to its producers, the show will include such characters as Abba, an Ethiopian, and Abed, “an intellectual Arab with a gentle soul.”
In the meantime, Gervais, the show’s original creator and star, sounded a happy note. “I am thrilled and amazed that Israel [is] making The Office with local writers, directors, and actors,” he said. “I mean, who ever heard of Jewish entertainers?”