Golden Globe Awards host Ricky Gervais has insisted he was just doing his job when he mocked celebrity targets and even the sponsor of the event.
Gervais’ victims at the awards ceremony included Charlie Sheen and Cher, nominated film The Tourist, and even the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which sponsors the event.
“If they didn’t want me, they shouldn’t have hired me,” he said on CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight show.
“I don’t think I did anything wrong. Those were like jibes at these people, and I’m sure they’ve got a sense of humour. I’m not going to apologise for being true to myself. My strategy is to make me laugh. If there’s anyone in the world like me, that’s a bonus.”
Morgan asked if any topic was ever off-limits for a wisecrack at a celebrity’s expense.
“Do you care about what they may be going through in their private lives?” he inquired, perhaps referring to Robert Downey Jr, whom Gervais introduced at Sunday’s NBC awards show by saying: “Many of you in this room probably know him best from such facilities as the Betty Ford Clinic and Los Angeles County Jail.”
“I don’t have an addiction,” replied Gervais, adding: “I’m not judging them for what they did.”
“You’re mocking them, aren’t you?” Morgan pressed.
“No, I’m not,” Gervais said. “I’m confronting the elephant in the room. … Like I’m going to go out there and not talk about the issues in their industry. Don’t forget, I’ve got to be an outsider there. I mustn’t come out there as everyone’s mate and schmooze – that’s nauseating. I’ve got to come out there, and I’ve got to roast them.”
Gervais, who was making his second appearance as Golden Globes host, said he took the job on the condition that he could say what he wanted.