Fans of "The Office," with Steve Carell as the boss from hell, know their favorite TV show is based on a popular British series of the same name starring Ricky Gervais. So, when the American version of "The Office" attracted 11.2 million viewers during its first show in 2005, it shocked many in the industry. Most executives had suspected it would fall flat because of its, well, British-type humor [source: Roberts].
Since then, the show has become an international sensation and has been copied several times. The French call their "Office," "Le Bureau;" while those living in Quebec refer to it as "Le Job." In Germany, they call "The Office" "Stromberg." The Chileans have their own version of the show, too [source: Chen].
One of the reasons for the show's success abroad was its popularity on iTunes. In 2006, NBC made the show available for download and it quickly topped the download chart. Other American networks soon began making their shows available on the Internet [source: Roberts].