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Ricky Gervais: 'I'm sorry if I offended… but not sorry for what I said'

21 January 2011
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As debate continues over whether Ricky Gervais went too far at the Golden Globes, the man himself has defended his close to the bone quips. "I'm sorry if they were offended but I'm not sorry for anything I said," he told Piers Morgan in an interview aired on CNN on Thursday.

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"They hired me for a job and if they didn't want me, they shouldn't have hired me." To say Ricky caused something of a stir is an understatement. Introducing Bruce Willis as "Ashton Kutcher's dad" and mentioning Hugh Hefner in the same breath as TV series The Walking Dead were just two of his controversial comments. But he insists: "I don't think I did anything wrong, honestly. "Those were like jibes at these people and I'm sure they've got a sense of humour." Piers asked him: "Is anything like that ever off limits? Do you care what they are going through in their private lives?" "Well, I don't know if they have an addiction. Also, I'm not judging them. I'm not judging them for what they did. I'm not mocking them. I'm confronting the elephant in the room." A spokesperson from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association said they knew what they were getting when they signed up the British funnyman. "When you hire a comedian like Ricky Gervais, one expects in your face, sometimes outrageous material," they said. "Certainly, in this case, he pushed the envelope and occasionally went too far. The HFPA would never condone some of his personal remarks. Overall, however, the show was among the best we've ever had and we were pleased." This year's awards was the second time Ricky has hosted the ceremony. And though his jokes were along the same lines as last year – "I enjoy a drink as much as the next man, unless that man happens to be Mel Gibson" – his appearance was slightly different. Ricky has completely overhauled his diet and began an exercise regime over last few years, losing a substantial amount of weight.

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The dramatic results could be seen to full effect in a picture he posted on his blog of himself wearing gold pants given to him by Ellen DeGeneres (above left). But his new healthy lifestyle is not prompted by vanity, he says. "It's nothing to do with Hollywood or looking good. This is a health thing. I thought enough is enough. I need to look after myself. I am nearly 50 - I don't want to die. "I work out for an hour a day. I have lost about 20lbs. I think that is enough. I haven't stopped eating anything - it is just exercise."

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