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Entertainment

AFP
November 13, 2019

Ricky Gervais to host record fifth Golden Globes

Entertainment

AFP
Wed, Nov 13, 2019

LOS ANGELES: Provocative British comic Ricky Gervais will host the Golden Globes for a record fifth time in January, organizers announced Tuesday.

The annual film and television awards are seen by many as an important bellwether for Oscars success, but the ceremony´s more informal -- and often alcohol-fueled -- tone is also a draw for stars and audiences.

Gervais´ no-holds-barred humor as host has drawn praise and criticism in previous years, when he took sharp digs at A-listers and the industry.

"Once again, they´ve made me an offer I can´t refuse. But this is the very last time I´m doing this, which could make for a fun evening," Gervais said in a statement.

Lorenzo Soria, president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, said Gervais´ return meant audiences should "expect the unexpected."

Gervais hosted the ceremony for three consecutive years from 2010-12, before returning in 2016.

His most recent appearance saw Gervais crack risque jokes about former Olympic athlete and transgender activist Caitlyn Jenner, and scandal-hit director Roman Polanski.

Gervais -- himself a multiple Golden Globe winner for "The Office" and "Extras" -- greeted the crowd with the line: "Shut up, you disgusting, pill-popping deviant scum!"

Last year, 18.6 million viewers tuned in for a ceremony hosted by comedian Andy Samberg and actress Sandra Oh.

The 77th annual ceremony will take place in Beverly Hills on January 5, with a total of 25 awards handed out for film and television across a three-hour broadcast.

In recent years, other major Hollywood awards such as the Oscars and Emmys have gone entirely without hosts -- but US broadcaster NBC confirmed the Globes would not follow that trend.

"There is always a palpable electricity in the room when Ricky takes the Globes stage," said Paul Telegdy, chairman of NBC Entertainment.

"We can´t wait to see what he has up his sleeve," he added.