Ricky Gervais has defended the right to be "offensive" in comedy, insisting that comics and writers must have "freedom of speech."
"I think offense is the collateral damage of freedom of speech," he said. "But just because you are offended, doesn't mean you're right. The more famous you get, the more people love you and hate you. If you are doing anything that isn't anodyne and watered down, you are going to polarise—but it's good to polarise, because some people are smart and some people are fucking stupid."
Gervais's quips as the host of the 2016 Golden Globes provoked a mixed reaction, with some criticising jokes targeted at Caitlyn Jenner.
But the comedian said he isn't bothered about his own reputation or anyone who doesn't like his work, since "they don't buy your stuff anyway".
"Do what you want and do it as well as you can and it will all be OK," he insisted. "Character is what is important. Reputation is just what strangers think of you. Unless people are coming to my house, I don't care [what they think]. Twitter? It's like reading every toilet wall in the world. You mustn't worry about it. It will send you mad. Who gives a f**k?"
Written and directed by Gervais, Special Correspondents stars the comic as a journalist who, along with a colleague (Eric Bana), is caught in a lie after claiming to be on the ground in a dangerous warzone.
Special Correspondents will be released exclusively on Netflix on April 29.
From: Esquire UK.