Ray Richmond is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
Ricky Gervais met the press this morning at TCA a mere two days before his third hosting gig at Sunday’s Golden Globes. And while he assured that even he has standards (“I won’t do real personal tragedy,” he said), the suspense and fear around town over which Hollywood stars he might target this time grows by the hour. As a panel session for his new HBO mock documentary Life’s Too Short, the upcoming Globes gig took center stage. “I did it the first time to have a show in front of a global audience, which is a lot of fun for a comedian.” Gervais said. “I did it the second time because I thought I’d improve on the first, and I think I did that. And I wasn’t going to do it a third time, but then I kept hearing the press saying I wouldn’t be invited back, so I did it to annoy them.”
Gervais was asked if he was nervous this time given the attention over his bad-boy ways. “Nervous? No. What’s the worst that can happen? I end my career once a week if you read the press. I do things that could end my career now. That’s my extreme sport. If you get fun with it, which I do and I demand, and you get your own way and are happy with what you’ve done, then nothing can happen to you. You’re bulletproof. Everything I say, I can justify it, I can stand by it, as I do every joke I did last year, then I don’t care. I don’t care if you’re offended.” He continued: “Who am I targeting? Targets isn’t a word I would use — subjects. I’m going to do a monologue about what happened during the year, and then introduce six or seven people as I did last year. I’ve got nothing against any of those people in the room. I’ve worked with many of them. I like many of them. I admire them. They’re just gags. I’m not trying to hurt anyone’s feelings or give them a bad night or undermine the moral fabric of America. I’m a comedian.
“I’d rather you laugh than gasp, but I cherish the gasps along with the laughs. I don’t know anyone who was really outraged last year. I mean, what did I say last year that was so outrageous?” (beat) “Oh yes. That.”