Ricky Gervais‘ memorable appearance on the Sept. 21 Emmys tipped off Hollywood to its next possible Oscar host. Shortly after Gervais jokingly scolded Steve Carell for stealing the Emmy he won last year for Extras, his reps were besieged with inquiries about his availability and were urged to book a meeting with Academy Awards organizers, stat. “The buzz around town is that Ricky should host the Oscars,” says one source close to the star. He’s already racking up the movie credits, including the requisite bomb that could become a punchline during the ceremony (Ghost Town earned a disappointing $5 million last weekend) and an intriguing upcoming project. He co-directed and co-wrote This Side of the Truth, a 2009 romantic comedy in which he stars with Jennifer Garner and Tina Fey. Gervais will also appear in his own comedy special for HBO this November.
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Video: EW’s Dave Karger talks to Ricky Gervais about The Office, Extras, and Ghost Town
Lisa Schwarzbaum’s review of Ghost Town
Ricky Gervais blogs the production of his new movie
EW’s 2008 Emmys coverage
EW’s 2009 Oscars coverage