< Unsourced image removed: frame|Ricky Gervais --> Ricky Gervais (born June 25, 1961) is an English comic writer and performer from Reading, Berkshire, England. He grew up in Whitley, on a council estate. Gervais found mainstream fame with his award-winning BBC2 television programme The Office, which he co-wrote and co-directed with his friend and collaborator Stephen Merchant. Besides writing and directing the show, Gervais played the lead role of David Brent. In 2005, Gervais returned to BBC Television with his new sitcom, Extras. In 2006, Gervais became the first guest star on The Simpsons to also write an episode, "Homer Simpson, This Is Your Wife", which aired March 26, 2006 (April 23 in the UK).
Gervais's father is of QuÃ©bÃ©cois descent and grew up in Quebec, Canada and came to the UK on duty during the Second World War, where he met his wife. Raised as the youngest of four siblings, Ricky Gervais has described his childhood as nice and "normal". His father's side of the family resides mostly in London, Ontario.