Jan vs. Holly: Office Battle Over Michael?


Holly may want to watch her back at The Office - Jan is just around the corner.


The last we saw of former company vice president of regional sales Jan Levinson, she had moved away after giving birth to baby daughter Astrid. But her former love interest Michael (Steve Carell) is now hung up on HR rep Holly (Amy Ryan).


Melora Hardin, who plays Jan, tells me she doesn't think she'll pop up again this season, but she'll definitely return for the next.


"Jan's probably got all the mixed feelings [about Michael and Holly] that Jan has about everything," Hardin told me yesterday from NYC, where she participated in Splenda's new series of roundtable discussions about moms and families. "Jan is probably annoyed and happy for him and hates him for it. But she also thinks it's great, because she doesn't want him anyway, but also really wants him and doesn't want him to fall in love with anyone else."


Got that?


Much less complicated is Hardin's role playing Bobby Ray's love interest in the upcoming Hannah Montana movie. "What I love most about Miley [Cyrus] is she's just enjoying herself," Hardin said. "She is having a good time - She doesn't mind being looked at and she doesn't mind being scrutinized. She's extraordinary in that way, but normal in that she's interested in very normal 16-year-old things."


And Cyrus isn't the only Disney superstar Hardin got close to recently. She plays the high school principal to Zac Efron's Mike O'Donnell in 17 Again. "He's dreamy," the 41-year-old Hardin gushed about Mr. Efron. "He's just so sweet."


Hardin makes her directorial debut early next month with You, an indie drama that will be released through iTunes and Amazon that features Hardin's husband Gildart Jackson (he also wrote the screenplay), their daughters Rory and Piper and friends like Brenda Strong and Joely Fisher. "We made this film in 18 days on a real shoestring budget. All the locations were donated and the catering was done by our friends," Hardin said. "It really was quite a coming together."


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