Friday, April 12, 2024

Ricky Gervais Hints “Office” Appearance, Suggests Steve Carell Replacement


Ricky Gervais is my hero.

His running of the Golden Globes was superb; his jokes were biting and welcomed. Nasty? He didn’t say anything that people in the audience last night weren’t thinking. The Globes are a joke, run by crazy people who fight among themselves in front of the actors during press conferences, and insist on having their pictures taken with the stars.

Ricky’s best jabs, though, were at gay scientologists and Mel Gibson. Wow.

After the awards show I caught up with Ricky at the HBO party on the lower level of the Beverly Hilton. He was having a drink with friends, quietly, coming down from the adrenaline rush of the show.Around him the room buzzed with HBO’s winners and players from Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson to Steve Buscemi and the gang from “Boardwalk Empire,” and Richard Kind, Robert Wuhl, Mark Wahlberg, and even Sean Diddy Combs.

Gervais told me a couple of important things about “The Office.” Of course, he’d introduced Steve Carell by crying that the American actor was leaving their “cash cow.”

Who would Ricky like to see replace Carell? “Will Arnett,” he said. “I always thought so. No one’s asked me but that’s what I think. He’s perfect.”

Ricky also gave Showbiz411 a couple of clues–hints–about what’s to come. He may yet appear on the Anerican show, and soon. “Watch on the 27th,” he said, “and you’ll get an idea of who’s going to be running The Office.” Will he be on that episode? “Just watch,” he reassured me.

Meanwhile, Ricky’s new HBO show starts this week. And he’s getting ready to film a new series for the BBC and HBO called “Life’s Too Short.”

As for the Golden Globe gig: it was rehearsed. The people he poked fun at knew what was coming, In a perverse way, HFPA president Phil Berk somehow enjoys the negative attention. Go figure.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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