Official: <i>The Office</i> Is Returning

Hot on the heels of NBC's renewals of Thursday comedies Parks and Recreation, Up All Night and Whitney comes word from TV Guide that The Office will be back for a ninth season.

The network is reportedly still hammering out deals with stars John Krasinksi, Ed Helms and Jenna Fischer who, according to the latter, are eager to return. There's also still no contract in place for actor/writer/executive producer B.J. Novak.

When The Office returns in the fall, it could be as a decidedly different comedy, with writer/actress Mindy Kaling landing her own show at Fox -- the title's now been changed from It's Messy to The Mindy Project -- and rumors of star Rainn Wilson and actor/showrunner Paul Lieberstein leaving for a Dwight-centered spinoff.

Last night's season finale drew 4.4 million viewers and a 2.2 share in the 18 to 49 demographic, the show's lowest-rated finale.

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