Ricky Gervais: Creator of ‘£76,000’ Oscars gift bags gives scathing response to comedian’s criticism

Lash Fary said the valuation of the goody bag was ‘not nearly as substantial as Ricky’s recent Netflix deal’

Annabel Nugent
Thursday 31 March 2022 10:54
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The creator of the Oscars gift bags, which Ricky Gervais strongly condemned, has hit back at the After Life star and called him a “hypocrite”.

On Sunday (27 March), Gervais issued a scathing statement about the gift bags handed out at the ceremony, which are thought to be worth more than $100,000 (£76,000).

The criticism came as part of the opening speech he imagined he would give had he been chosen to host the Oscars.

“Hello. I hope this show helps cheer up the ordinary people watching at home,” wrote Gervais on Twitter. “If you’re unemployed for example, take some comfort in the fact that even if you had a job, your salary probably wouldn’t be as much as the goofy bag all the actors have just been given.”

He continued: “I’m proud to announce that this is the most diverse and progressive Oscars ever. Looking out I see people from all walks of life. Every demographic under the sun. Except poor people, obviously. F*** them.”

The creators of the gift bags issued an equally brutal response to Gervais’s criticism.

Lash Fary, founder of Distinctive Assets, told Metro: “Ricky Gervais is a talented comedian, so it’s no surprise that I find the hypocrisy of his ‘goody bag tweet’ hilarious.

‘While we do not spend money buying any of the items in our gift bags (much like advertising, this is simply a promotional campaign for brands), the valuation is indeed significant… but not nearly as substantial as Ricky’s recent Netflix deal, the residuals he receives for The Office or his multi-million-dollar home.”

Farry then riffed on Gervais’s original tweet, stating: “‘So if you’re unemployed, take some comfort in the fact that even if you had a job, your salary probably wouldn’t be as much as Ricky Gervais makes for a single episode of After Life.”

Gervais responded to the article with a laughing crying face emoji. Meanwhile, David Baddiel showed his support for the comedian, writing: “Bit weird. I don’t think you were suggesting that any A-List celebrity was going to *live* in the goody bag.”

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It is unknown how much Gervais was paid by Netflix for his hit series After Life. In 2020, however, the outlet reported that sources said the streaming giant offered him £5m to write and star in a new season. The third series was released in January this year.

The Independent has contacted representatives of Fary and Gervais for comment.

Viewers and stars are still reeling from the events of the Oscars, during which Will Smith slapped presenter Chris Rock on stage after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s bald head. She has previously been open about her struggle with alopecia.

You can follow along with all the live updates on the controversy here, including Rock’s first comments since the incident.

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