In a series of announcements released during Winter TCA Press Tour, NBC unveiled the guest stars who come on board its midseason line-up. Among the newly-heard are Katharine McPhee going to "Community" and Oscar-winning actress Kathy Bates making a cameo on "The Office".
McPhee will play Chevy Chase's step daughter and potential love interest for Jeff in an episode airing immediately after the Winter Olympics coverage. Back in late 2009, it was already announced that comedian Jack Black will also visit the show. NBC said he would be a young man who is interested in joining the study group and must convince them to gain admittance. Black's episode is on Thursday, January 14.
Bates meanwhile, portrays the CEO of Sabre, the mysterious company that buys Dunder Mifflin. Her character is described as "charismatic" and "iconoclastic", a person who will be welcomed warmly in the Scranton branch. She is a Southern charmer who has always done it her way. Unlike McPhee, Bates will be featured in a multi-episode arc starting February 4.
On the same occasion, NBC said Jim and Pam of "The Office" will welcome their baby on episodes airing March 4 and 11.
Other highlights from the casting news shared by NBC are the return of Jon Hamm as Liz's love interest on "30 Rock" and Jason Ritter visiting "Parenthood" as an English teacher.