Leslie David Baker Discusses ‘The Office’ Removing Blackface Episode, Whether The Jokes Still Work In 2020

Leslie David Baker is looking back at his days on “The Office” and bringing back Stanley in a new way.

The actor, who starred as the beloved Stanley Hudson for nine seasons on the hit sitcom, joined ET Canada’s Graeme O’Neil for a chat on Instagram Live on Monday, discussing all things “The Office”.

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Despite the series being off the air for more than seven years, Baker says he still sees the show’s impact every day.

“It’s an entirely new generation listening now. 8, 9, 10-year-old kids are now coming up and telling me that they are fans of ‘The Office’ and we stopping filming in 2013… They weren’t even born when the show was created,” he told ET Canada. “Those personality types you always run into. You always run into a Stanley or a Phillis, a Kevin even.”

But despite the love, Baker says “The Office” creators made mistakes. Including the “Dwight Christmas” episode where one of the characters appears in Blackface.

“That’s what happens when you get a lot of young writers who don’t understand the historical aspects of doing Blackface. And they don’t understand, nor have been required to be cognizant of the repercussions of doing Blackface in 2020,” he says. “There are enough Black people to go around that you don’t have to dip white people in black paint to play us. We’re already here. Use the Black people that are here and don’t manufacture some.”

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And on whether the jokes would still work in 2020? Baker says “You tell me. People are still watching it.”

He added, “It’ll become part of our culture that we will learn to watch and learn from. That is the purpose of film… To move us ahead as a culture.”

But what’s next for Baker? He wants to bring Stanley back to the small screen with a spinoff called “Uncle Stan”.

According to Baker, “Uncle Stan” will follow his beloved character Stanley heading to California to help out his nephew who runs a motorcycle repair shop.

“I came up with this idea after going to a number of Comic-Cons and soccer games where many people ask me what happened to Stanley. What did he do? What’s his life like?” he says. “He wouldn’t just be sitting in Florida doing wood carving and listen to disco music. I mean, who would do that?”

Watch the full interview above.

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