Ricky Gervais To Host Golden Globe Awards

'The Invention of Lying' star is the show's first host since 1995.

The 67th annual Golden Globe Awards is inventing a new approach for the typically host-free film and television award show by hiring [movieperson id="10456"]Ricky Gervais[/movieperson], star of "The Invention of Lying" and the U.K. version of "The Office," as the evening's master of ceremonies.

Gervais, who will be the show's first host since 1995, released a statement expressing his excitement over having "free reign" during the Globes, according to Variety.

Ricky Gervais In Photos

"Not only is this the biggest Hollywood celebration of the industry which includes both film and TV, but also an environment where I feel I can get free reign as a host," said Gervais. "I have resisted many other offers like this, but there are some things you don't turn down."

Hosting a big-time award ceremony such as the Globes appears to be a golden opportunity, excusing the pun, but that wasn't always the case for Gervais. In a March interview with

The New York Times, the comedian spoke about his qualms against hosting award ceremonies — specifically the Academy Awards, which he cited as an opportunity with nothing but risks.

"I think it's a thankless task for a comedian," Gervais said at the time. "Because what's the best that could happen? You're funny? You should be. The worst that can happen is, they say, [worst] host ever. And people aren't there to hear jokes. They're there to see if they've won an Oscar."

The Oscars are well known for humorous antics from musical numbers to monologues, typically thanks to celebrity hosts along the lines of Jon Stewart or Billy Crystal. In hosting that show, Gervais would have a stringent history to adhere to — but the lack of a recent host at the Globes offers Gervais the opportunity to branch out and strike a new tone, which likely appealed to the comedian based on other comments he made in the same Times interview.

"[There's] something about what I do, in my persona — I should be the wrong person for the job," he said of his qualifications. "I should be trespassing. If you're in charge, suddenly my stuff doesn't work as much. I'd rather be the naughty school boy than the teacher, if you know what I mean. I think that's what a comedian is, really."

Just how drastically Gervais will shake things up as the first host for the Golden Globes since 1995 remains to be seen, but at least one thing is for sure: the hiring of Gervais is a serious improvement over its 2008 awards show, which merely announced a list of winners due to the Writers Guild of America strike at the time.

The 67th annual Golden Globe Awards air January 17 on NBC at 8 pm. MTV News will bring you all the news, fashion and fun straight from the red carpet, with exclusive photos, interviews, live blogs and more!