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Mindy Kaling, B.J. Novak Joke About Their ‘Insanely Complicated’ Relationship While Presenting at Emmys

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Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak keep that “will they or won’t they” energy going — even at the Emmys.

While presenting the trophy for writing for a limited or anthology series or movie at the 2022 Emmy Awards Monday night, the longtime friends and former The Office costars poked fun at the buzz surrounding their relationship.


“To all the nominees, we just want to say congratulations, you lazy sons of bitches,” joked Kaling, 43. “How are you getting away with this?”

“Eight episodes?” chimed in Novak, 43, before Kaling continued, “We came out doing network sitcoms, 22 episodes a year.”

“And that show, that would take up your whole life. No time for other projects,” Novak said before Kaling added while looking at him, “No time for a social life. You had no choice but to form insanely complicated relationships with your costars.


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Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak speak on stage during the 74th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards held at the Microsoft Theater on September 12, 2022.

Chris Haston/NBC via Getty Mindy Kaling and BJ Novak

RELATED: Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak’s Friendship Timeline


“And now, you can just write some self-contained masterpiece, cast it with movie stars … ” Novak said, continuing to good-naturedly poke fun at the perceived differences between limited series and network sitcoms.

“Shoot it for a few weeks and then go back to your fancy luxury compound,” Kaling quipped, nodding to The White Lotus’ picturesque Hawaii set.

Friends since they met while working on The Office in 2004 (with a short period of dating in there somewhere), Kaling and Novak have been vocal about their now-platonic love for each other.


They’ve helped each other on creative projects, attended each other’s red-carpet premieres — and in 2017, Novak officially became a member of Kaling’s family when she named him her daughter’s godfather.

RELATED VIDEO: Mindy Kaling Brought B.J. Novak as Her Date to an Oscars Party — and Fans Love Their Reunion!

Similarly to their hilarious joint speech at the Emmys on Monday, Novak described his relationship with Kaling — who played his Office character Ryan Howard’s on-again, off-again love interest, Kelly Kapoor on the show — as “complicated” when he spoke to PEOPLE in 2014.


“A really complicated person and a really complicated friendship, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world,” Novak added.

“It isn’t the thing that people sometimes think it is,” Kaling said in a 2019 interview on CBS Sunday Morning. “But he’s really part of my family now, which is great. Even though that’s less of a sexy characterization of our relationship, I think it’s a deeper and a closer one.”

The 74th Primetime Emmy Awards are being broadcast live on NBC at 8 p.m. ET from the Microsoft Theater in ‎Los Angeles.


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