For general biographical information, see Ed Helms on Wikipedia.
Coming to The Office
Ed Helms was a fan of the British version of The Office and had auditioned for the role of Jim. He was excited when Steve Carell was named to play Michael Scott because he had worked with Carell on The Daily Show.
Ed Helms was contacted near the end of Season 2 with the opportunity to play a new character. He loved the character of Andy that he was asked to play. He was originally hired for only eight episodes, with the writers planning for Jim to leave Stamford and return to Scranton. The writers were not confident that they could leave Jim away from Scranton for so long, so they hired Helms for only two episodes at a time. Helms stayed at the Sportsmen's Lodge in North Hollywood while filming.
Although the original idea was that Jim would leave Stamford behind, the writers ultimately decided that the two branches would merge, thereby bringing the Stamford employees to Scranton. After six episodes, Helms was hired on for the remainder of the season, at which point he moved from New York to California.
- Helms and Steve Carell worked together on Evan Almighty.
- Helms worked with Rainn Wilson and John Krasinski in Monsters Vs. Aliens.