Stephen Root Revealed the True Legacy of His “Office Space” Role

Hint: it involves staplers

Stephen Root
Stephen Root attends the season 3 premiere of HBO's "Barry" at Rolling Greens on April 18, 2022 in Culver City, California.
David Livingston/Getty Images

Some character actors are known for having amazing comic timing. Others can add abundant gravitas to nearly any role they play. Among talented character actors, Stephen Root stands out in part because of the wide emotional range he’s able to summon up onscreen. He’s currently earning rave reviews for his work on Barry. Others know him from the cult comedy News Radio — but Root’s also memorably played sinister characters in Get Out and The Empty Man.

Still, there’s one role that he might be best known for — and a red stapler is involved. His performance as put-upon office worker Milton in Mike Judge’s Office Space created an indelible comedic character — as well as one whose struggles resonate all too well with plenty of viewers.

As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, Root recently revealed the extent to which his Office Space role has made an impact on people. Their article recounts an appearance Root made on The Rich Eisen Show. “[T]here isn’t a set that I don’t go onto that doesn’t have a box of staplers for me to sign for the crew,” he recalled — and added that he’s also signed a number of staplers for Office Space fans over the years.

Root also shared some inside information about the Swingline stapler used for the film itself. Or, to be more precise, the staplers — there were four used total. Root and Judge each have one, while the other two did not survive the Office Space shoot intact. Truly a prop for the ages.

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