Ricky Gervais said his David Brent character is “not so bad” compared to the “ruthless D-listers” competing on Celebrity Big Brother.

Gervais shot to fame playing the office manager 15 years ago on the BBC mockumentary The Office, but the actor, writer and director said the nature of fame is very different now.

His new film David Brent: Life On The Road catches up with Brent, who is now a travelling salesman for a cleaning and ladies’ personal hygiene products company.

Gervais, 55, said: “The important thing about this film is, the world has changed. Back in the day he (Brent) was on one of those quaint docusoaps where an ordinary person got their 15 minutes and that was it, but nowadays fame is insatiable.

“People live their life like an open wound. They do anything to be famous, and he can’t compete with that.

“There is a whole new breed of people that go on Celebrity Big Brother and they do terrible things and they are rewarded for it.

“It’s an unwritten contract with the programme-makers, they promise they will do terrible things and the programme-makers go ‘OK, as long as you do terrible things we will let you on the show and you can get another book deal or whatever’.

“I watch Celebrity Big Brother and think: ‘This is like a zoo’, they are just running around rutting. ‘You’re on telly mate, what are you doing?’ David Attenborough should film Big Brother.”


Lifestyle

Lacemakers in Limerick want to preserve their unique craft for future generations and hope to gain UNESCO heritage status, writes Ellie O’Byrne.Made in Munster: Lace-making a labour of love rather than laborious industry

More From The Irish Examiner