Ricky Gervais weighs in on Downing Street's party scandal as he discusses Afterlife final series

What can viewers look forward to in Afterlife's final series? ITV News Arts Editor Nina Nannar hears from creator and lead actor Ricky Gervais

The UK's leaders should not be trusted, comedian Ricky Gervais has said following the revelation that Downing Street staff were invited to a party in the garden of Number 10 during the nationwide lockdown.An email obtained by ITV News shows more than 100 staff were invited the event during May 2020 - and Gervais said he understands the public's "palpable" anger. "Why wouldn't they be angry? Myself and everyone kept to the rules. I think I've been naive all my life, it's only now that I think, 'why do we trust them?" he said.

"Of course we shouldn't trust the people in charge!'"

Listen to the ITV News entertainment podcast, Unscripted

Gervais spoke to ITV News in the run-up to the third and final series of Afterlife, his black comedy exploring grief. He stars as director, writer and lead actor - Gervais plays Tony, a widower and newspaper reporter.

The first two series of Afterlife were filmed pre-pandemic. After that, Gervais had to think about whether or not to incorporate Covid into his show's final outing. "I decided to not do it. I want people to watch it in 10 years and I don't want them to be reminded of the pandemic. I've made it normal life," he said.

Gervais also touched on his previous stints as a presenter at the Golden Globes awards, where his attempts to be brutally honest about celebrities had mixed responses. With the Globes' subsequent disgrace, he feels celebrity culture as a whole is in trouble.

Gervais on the Golden Globes red carpet

"The first time I did it, 10 years ago, I remember people saying 'how dare he say those things to these most privileged... multi-millionaires,'" he recalled.

"By the last one, people were going 'give it to them. We're sick of them'."

When asked what he'd say to those who point out he is also a celebrity and millionaire, Gervais answered: "I hold my hands up - I am, so I try and not lecture people."

As for Afterlife, he hopes viewers will enjoy its bittersweet final moments, although he acknowledges that it's "crazy" to end the show at the height of its success. "It's crazy to end it now, I know that. It's at the peak of its powers, everyone loves it," Gervais said.

However, he said his decision is final, and he'll "hold himself to it".

Afterlife series three airs on Netflix on January 14