My Extras special interview with Ricky Gervais

Ricky Gervais welcomes me into a nondescript conference room at HBO’s Midtown Manhattan offices, looking cool and casual. Wait. I’m not writing some sort of clichéd magazine piece, am I? How could I? Sometime in the middle of our half-hour chat, what started as an interview became, unbeknownst to Gervais, a pep talk – not just for me, but for anyone in the creative arts to stand up for what we believe in and tell the naysayers off. He just got Golden Globe nominations for best actor and show this morning. This following his Emmy win this fall. And his Extras finale debuts Sunday on HBO. Gervais told me the finale really can exist as a stand-alone. "People who have never seen us can enjoy this, kind of like a TV movie. I think we hit the ground running. It’s pretty clear what’s going on. This is a guy who’s struggling with his fame and his press perception, and it’s not what he expected. And he sort of sold out to get this awful comedy on the air and now he wants more. And then soon he forgets what he wants altogether and it’s just fame is the master…I think whether you’ve watched this series or not, by the end of the finale, I think you realize that Extras was about friendship. It wasn’t about media. That was just...

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