Hollywood better grow some thick skin — and fast.
Relentlessly biting comedian Ricky Gervais has signed on to host the 2020 Golden Globes Awards, returning to the stage for a record fifth time to prove that offending even the industry's most powerful figures won't get you blackballed if you're funny enough.
"Once again, they’ve made me an offer I can’t refuse," Gervais said in a statement. "But this is the very last time I’m doing this, which could make for a fun evening."
Gervais first hosted the Globes in 2010 and returned in 2011, 2012 and 2016. Each time, he's fearlessly skewered famous faces in the audience even on super-touchy subjects that other comics wouldn't dare approach. Among the highlights: He's called Matt Damon "the only person Ben Affleck hasn't been unfaithful to" and went all-in on Mel Gibson upon his return to the spotlight.
Several years later, when he returned to the stage, he couldn't help but reference the Gibson takedown: "I’m in the awkward position of having to introduce him again," Gervais said. "Listen, I’m sure it’s embarrassing for both of us. I blame NBC for this terrible situation. Mel blames…we know who Mel blames."
He also doesn't mind blowback from behind-the-scenes folks who handle the pursestrings.
"The president of the Hollywood Foreign Press said if I say anything offensive, or crass, or resort to innuendo, he’s going to personally come out here and 'pull me off,'" Gervais said onstage in 2016. "So that’s an offer I couldn’t refuse. Yes, yes, that is the level — an old man pulling me off. Again. At least Jeffrey Tambor did it in a dress."
The announcement is particularly notable given the recent trend of abandoning award show hosts altogether: This year's Academy Awards made do without one after a controversy with Kevin Hart reared its head, and after the show was generally well-received, the Emmys followed suit.
“In a world where many award shows are opting to go the no host route, the Golden Globes are going all in," said Dick Clark Productions CEO Mike Mahan. "It’s going to be a great night.".