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OTRC: Ricky Gervais to return as Golden Globes host despite controversy (Poll)

Ricky Gervais in a photo from the 2011 Golden Globes on Jan. 16, 2011. (NBC)

Ricky Gervais will host the Golden Globe Awards in 2012, despite the many negative reviews of the British funnyman's jokes at last year's ceremony.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which organizes the annual event, announced the news on Twitter on Wednesday, November 16, saying: "Ricky Gervais will host the 69th Golden Globe Awards on January 15, 2012."

"Just told Billy Crystal he'd better not use any of my holocaust or pedophile material at The Oscars," the 50-year-old comedian and actor later Tweeted, alongside a photo of the two. "He agreed (true)."

Crystal, 63, was recently named as the host of the 2012 Oscars, marking his ninth such stint.

"Ha ha Hello. Welcome to my world," Gervais added, alongside a photo of himself wearing sunglasses and smoking a cigar.

Gervais, co-creator and star of the original UK version of the series "The Office," had told Heat magazine earlier this year that he was asked to consider hosting the Golden Globes, which honors achievements in film and television, for the third time. Philip Berk, president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, denied at the time that such an offer was made.

Many viewers felt Gervais' jokes during the 2011 Golden Globes were too mean. However, ratings for the annual telecast increased. The show drew nearly 17 million viewers - slightly more than the year before.

During the 2011 ceremony, Gervais introduced Downey Jr. by giving a list of his recent successful film credits before ending with: "But many of you in this room probably know him best from such facilities as the Betty Ford Clinic and Los Angeles County Jail."

Downey Jr. didn't take kindly to Gervais' joke, saying: "Aside from the fact that it's been hugely mean-spirited with mildly sinister undertones, I'd say the vibe of the show has been pretty good so far, wouldn't you?"

When "Toy Story 3" costars Tom Hanks and Tim Allen presented, Hanks said: "We recall when Ricky Gervais was a slightly chubby but very kind comedian." Allen responded, "Neither of which he is now."

Berk had told The Hollywood Reporter that the comedian "definitely crossed the line."

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