Ricky Gervais reveals the 1 joke he regrets: His 2011 Golden Globes dig at Tim Allen

Gervais says that he has nothing against the "Home Improvement" star.
Ricky Gervais, Tim Allen
The 77th Annual Golden Globes Awards ceremony will be aired on NBC on Sunday, Jan. 5, at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST. Getty Images

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/ Source: TODAY
By Francesca Gariano

The 77th Annual Golden Globes Awards is Sunday evening, and four-time host Ricky Gervais will be returning for the first time since 2016. Over the course of his hosting gigs — 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2016 — the comedian has left no group out of his often controversial jokes.

In a new conversation with The Hollywood Reporter, when asked if he regretted any of his past jokes, Gervais admitted that there was one in particular that didn’t sit well with him: His dig at Tim Allen during the 2011 Golden Globes Awards.

“Because I think he took it wrong,” he explained to The Hollywood Reporter about Allen. “The joke was him and Tom Hanks. So I came out and said, ‘Our next two presenters, the first has won five Oscars, combined box office of five billion dollars. And the other, Tim Allen.’”

He added, “Right? It's a fine joke. I'm teasing Tim Allen.”

“But anyone standing next to Tom Hanks, unless it's Dustin Hoffman or Robert Redford or Robert De Niro, that could be me,” he elaborated. “But it happened to be Tim Allen. And I have nothing against Tim Allen. He's a good actor. He's probably a nice bloke. So even though there's no malice and I can justify it comedically and everyone laughed, I didn't want Tim Allen to think, ‘Oh, that was written for me. Why me?’ Well, because you were standing next to Tom Hanks.”

Gervais holds the record in Hollywood as the only performer to host the Golden Globes five times, despite his past award show controversies when making jabs at Caitlyn Jenner, equal pay and Jennifer Lawrence.

The 58-year-old comedian told the TODAY that he has "got to bite the hand that feeds me" in an interview in 2016 ahead of his performance as host.

"I don't want this nauseating, backslapping 'aren't we all great'... yeah, we know we're all great," he said. "It's entertainment, it's fairyland, it's TV, this isn't real, we're... not saving lives."

Gervais' material is still under locks for tomorrow night, but if it's anything like his jabs in the past, it will be endearing to some and offensive to others, but at least Allen will be off-limits.

The 77th Annual Golden Globes Awards ceremony will be aired on NBC on Sunday, Jan. 5, at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST.