Ricky Gervais Could Return as Golden Globes Host

Ricky Gervais - Laughing Portrait - P - 2010
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An HFPA insider confirms dinner talks between the comic, NBC and the organization that hosts the Globes.

Following Ricky Gervais’ jaw-dropping Golden Globes performance in January, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association may have invited him back for another gig.

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A source close to the HFPA confirms to The Hollywood Reporter that Douglas Vaughn, senior vp specials at NBC, and HFPA president Aida Takla-O'Reilly had dinner with Gervais in Paris to discuss a potential deal. According to a report in the New York Post, an official offer has been made, but THR's source would not confirm the report of an offer. 

The outspoken Brit made waves with his Globes hosting, which some in Hollywood found mean-spirited and off-color. After the show, HFPA president Philip Berk told THR that Gervais “definitely crossed the line.”

“Some of the things were totally unacceptable. But that’s Ricky,” he said in January. “When you hire Ricky Gervias, you expect the unexpected.”

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Still, even though the HFPA refused to condone many of Gervais’ jokes, the group put out a statement following the telecast saying that overall, “the show was among the best we’ve ever had and we were pleased.” The Globes averaged 17 million viewers on NBC, up 5 percent in demo from the year prior.

Given the ratings for the show and the attention that Gervais returning to the Globes stage would bring the fourth-place network, it makes sense why NBC would want Gervais back.

The comic made headlines again in August, alleging that NBC had been pushing for his return despite past reluctance from the HFPA. At the time, Gervais said, “NBC have offered it – they think they can persuade the Hollywood Foreign Press Association… But I don’t think they will go for it. I love NBC and I love the fact that they have stuck with me through it all. But I don’t think I should do it anyway.”

Email: Alex.Benblock@thr.com