LIKE YOU, JOHN KRASINSKI is a fan of The Office. As the beloved sitcom shoots its ninth and final season, the 33-year-old Boston-born actor is promoting his biggest Hollywood role yet: as Matt Damon’s co-writer, co-star and co-producer on Promised Land, set in a farm town where a huge natural-gas company rolls in to buy up real estate and tempt struggling families with big payoffs. Damon is the corporate hotshot who’s eager to cut checks; Krasinski plays a canny, too-good-to-be-true environmentalist, a cross between Jim Halpert and Rachel Carson. But Krasinski’s growing Hollywood stature doesn’t mean he’s happy to say goodbye to The Office.
You’ve spent a lot of time with Matt Damon recently. Is there something you’re better at than he is?
Nothing. I don’t even need time to think about it – nothing at all. He’s smart and nice and good-hearted. I wish I could say he’s secretly a murderer. As of now, I haven’t found anything, but you can never rule it out.
Would you say Promised Land has a liberal take on the issue of fracking?
It’s definitely going to have liberal tendencies to it. There’s been a small backlash from certain energy groups, who aren’t happy that our movie says fracking is bad. Anybody who leans right on the issue of energy probably isn’t psyched about this movie.
Once you had the title for the movie, did you talk about trying to license Bruce Springsteen’s song “The Promised Land”?
We did. And when we played the song, it was almost a little too on the nose. But we were hoping to get “Dancing in the Dark” for the karaoke scene, so we reached out to Bruce and got his blessing. I don’t know if he knew that I was going to butcher the song.
Were you deliberately singing badly in that scene?
I’m not a good singer. In the stage directions to the script, we wrote, “This character is terrible at karaoke.” I had a great time because I could point to the script and say, “No, I’m supposed to be this bad.”
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