The Response to Ricky Gervais’ Golden Globes Speech

How people are reacting to Gervais’ controversial message for the film industry.

Delaney Wildermuth, Staff Reporter

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The 2020 Golden Globes aired at 8:00 p.m. on Jan. 5, live from Los Angeles, California. British comedian Ricky Gervais hosted the event. Preceding the awards, Gervais delivered a bold speech to hundreds of celebrity audience members. The comic aimed to expose corruption and legal leniency towards the show business. The reaction to his message varies considerably. 

There were several aspects to Gervais’ ten minute monologue. Firstly, the comic joked that his limo’s license plate was made by incarcerated actress, Felicity Huffman, in prison. The audience was widely surprised by Gervais’ boldness. For context, the 2019 college admissions scandal sparked a large argument debating celebrity privilege under the law. Huffman’s mere eleven-day  sentence was a joke to millions of those following the case. 

Soon after his first crack, Gervais called the celebrity audience ‘perverts’, claiming that 2019 was a “big year for pedophile movies.” Similarly, he comments on the success of Apple’s ‘The Morning Show’; Gervais points out the irony in a show about the importance of morality being made by a company “running sweatshops in China.” In general, most of the focus was centered around a celebrity’s tendency to act hypocritically.  

In response, Gervais received several disapproving looks, specifically from Tom Hanks. “We recall when Ricky Gervais was a slightly chubby but very kind comedian,” Hanks later expressed in an interview. “Neither of which he is now,” Tim Allen remarked, following the sentiment.

Many professional critics also contributed their review of Gervais’ approach to hosting. Variety  called his efforts “tame,” saying he “made a point of emphasizing just how little he cared about the show.” Opposed, Fox News host Greg Gutfeld applauded Gervais’ “middle finger” to Hollywood.

However Hollywood perceived his speech, there’s no doubt that Gervais gave a star-quality start to the night.