Controversial comic Ricky Gervais will be back to host the Golden Globes ceremony and broadcast on NBC for a third time on January 15, 2012.
Many in Hollywood thought that the cherubic-faced, ascerbic Gervais would not be welcome to host the Globes again, primarily for a remark he made last year when introducing then-Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) president Philip Berk: that Gervais had to "help [Berk] off the toilet and pop his teeth back in" to get him on stage. Berk was not amused. The HFPA runs the Golden Globes.
Here’s some terrific background on this story from our friends Mike Fleming and Nellie Andreeva at Deadline.com: "Ray Richmond most recently learned that the HFPA was deeply divided over whether to bring back Ricky. But, with the Globes less than two months away, the organization had to decide one way or the other by this Thursday or Friday at the latest. The HFPA membership appeared roughly evenly split, but both sides are united in their anger at NBC for lobbying to have the comedian back and pressuring the HFPA to follow suit. As a source close to the discussion told Richmond: ‘NBC has put the HFPA in a lose-lose situation. If the Hollywood Foreign Press says yes to Ricky, it risks turning the Globes into The Ricky Gervais Show and leaving the impression that they’re annually throwing a great party while inviting someone who humiliates all of the guests. If it says no, the HFPA looks like it has no sense of humor about itself. The problem is, if you have Ricky, the show tends to wind up being all about him and how mean he can be. He effectively dwarfs the importance of the ceremony itself."
On the other hand, the story notes, HFPA members clearly understand that Gervais gets them and the Globes a lot of ink that could translate into higher ratings.
The New York Daily News, in its story about Gervais returning wrote that he tweeted on Wednesday afternoon: "Just told Billy Crystal he’d better not use any of my holocaust or pedophile material at the Oscars. He agreed (true)."
Fasten your seat belts–with Gervais back hosting the Globes it’s guaranteed to be a bumpy night!