12 JUNE 2007

As far as launches go, Ricky Gervais' promotion of his upcoming Fringe show in the Scottish capital couldn't have gone with more of a bang. With his fingers plugging his ears, the comic had a blast as the One O'Clock Gun boomed from the battlements of Edinburgh Castle - where he will perform as part of his Fame Tour on the penultimate night of the Edinburgh Festival.

Then in a case of role reversal from his Office character David Brent, Ricky was the one getting a shouting at as gunnery sergeant James Shannon kept him in line.

Over 8,000 people are expected to pack the Edinburgh Tattoo arena in the castle grounds for the 90-minute stand-up gig. Although there was an ensemble comedy show at the castle last year, Ricky will be the first solo comedian to entertain at the castle since the days of the court jester.

It's something the 45-year-old is clearly looking forward to. "It's great to be back," he said. "I love Edinburgh and Scotland in general and I love castles" - although he did admit to being worried about being swooped on by owls and getting caught in a storm at the outdoor event.

Tickets for the gig on Sunday, August 26, are now on sale.

Photo: © Alphapress.com
The Extras star fired off the promotion of his appearance at the upcoming Edinburgh Fringe Festival with a little help from the castle's gunPhoto: © Rex
Photo: © Alphapress.com
The gun blast wasn't the only ear-ache Ricky got on the battlements, as gunnery sergeant James Shannon have him a talking to