The Office is a British television comedy series that was first broadcast in the United Kingdom on BBC Two on 9 July 2001. Created, written, and directed by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, the programme is about the day-to-day lives of office employees in the Slough, Berkshire branch of the fictitious Wernham Hogg Paper Company. Gervais also stars in the series, playing the central character, David Brent. Although fictional and scripted, the programme takes the form of a documentary (a fictional documentary, i.e. a mockumentary), with the presence of the camera often acknowledged.