13 MAY 2009

Watch video footage of the premiere

London's Leicester Square played host to two comic forces on Tuesday night as Ben Stiller and Ricky Gervais launched their joint project Night At The Museum: Battle Of The Smithsonian. And, seemingly inspired by the comedy flick's title, the pair staged a mock punch-up as they arrived at the premiere.

Ricky and New Yorker Ben have been winding each other up since the Reading-born funnyman invited Ben to appear on his first series of Extras in 2005. And they clearly relish bouncing gags off each other.

When asked about collaborating with the Meet The Fockers star on the flick Ricky replied: "The idea was to put him off and make him laugh". The British star – who has just announced a new stand-up tour for later this year – continues: "The best thing about working with Ben was putting him off. He takes (his work) so seriously and he's such a professional."

The follow-up to the successful Night At The Museum is already being hailed by film pundits as even better than the original. It centres around museum security guard Larry Daley, played by Ben. Larry once again finds himself drawn into the hectic world of the Washington Smithsonian museum, which comes to life when the lights go off at the end of the day.

It also features laughter-packed appearances from Owen Wilson, Steve Coogan and Robin Williams.

British famous faces invited to the screening of the adventure included former Hollyoaks beauty Gemma Atkinson and Scottish TV presenter Gail Porter, who brought along her seven-year-old daughter Honey.

Photo: Rex
The two funnymen, who have been friends since Ben appeared on Ricky's Extras show four years ago, staged a mock dust-up on the way into the premiere of their joint project Night At The Museum: Battle Of The Smithsonian
Photo: Rex
Famous locals at the screening included TV presenter Gail Porter, who had taken along her daughter Honey