The US version of The Office is to get a series of ten web-only episodes.
The break between filming seasons two and three of the NBC comedy will be filled by filming a series of episodes starring characters who usually get rather less airtime in the TV show, and giving the show's main stars a chance to take a break.
Announcing the episodes, NBC's Jeff Zucker re-iterated the need for TV shows to have online and mobile aspects to keep audiences interested.
The episodes will be available for download at some point in the summer. NBC already offers episodes of the Office through the iTunes Music Store the day after they air on the network. It recently credited its deal with Apple as being responsible for an increase in TV ratings through a growing fanbase who have found the show through the Store.
The Office: An America Workplace is a US remake of the British original. It stars Steve Carrell as the Ricky Gervais character, and relocates Wernam-Hogg paper supplies in Slough to Dunder-Mifflin paper supplies in Pennsylvania. It's gained a cult US following, and Ricky Gervais is due to pen an episode of the next season.
Last year, popular TV show 24
offered 'mobisodes' of the drama, featuring other characters from CTU solving crimes in 1-minute shorts. They didn't exactly set the world alight.
Are you a fan of the Office? Will you be checking out the web episodes of the show, or just watching the Ricky Gervais DVDs again? Let us know what you think over in the forums.