January 18, 2015 8:38 pm
Updated: January 19, 2015 7:04 am

Ricky Gervais preps for next movie in Toronto

Ricky Gervais, pictured on Jan. 11, 2015.

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TORONTO — Ricky Gervais left Toronto on Saturday after spending five days in the city scouting locations for his new movie.

The British comedian and his long time partner, author Jane Fallon, arrived in Toronto a day after appearing at the Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, where he was a presenter and nominee.

(At a Golden Globes after-party, Gervais and Fallon were seen hanging out with Toronto-born actor Will Arnett.)

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“I had a fast jet waiting to get out of town and I’m now in Toronto,” Gervais explained on his blog.

“In temperature terms it feels a bit like traveling from Venus to Mars in shorts. I love Canada though. It’s in my genes. And so are my frozen balls.”

Gervais is half-Canadian because his father Lawrence Gervais, who died in 2002, was from London, Ont.

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The creator of The Office was in Toronto as part of the pre-production process for Special Correspondents, a movie he wrote and will direct and star in opposite Eric Bana.

Cameras are scheduled to roll in the spring.

An English adaptation of Frédéric Auburtin’s comedy Envoyés Très Spéciaux, it’s about a radio reporter and his technician who fake their own kidnapping during a conflict in South America — and hide out in New York City instead.

Bana previously spent time in Toronto making the 2009 drama The Time Traveler’s Wife with hometown resident Rachel McAdams.

While Gervais scouted locations last week — including the studios of CBC Radio on Front Street — Fallon did some sole-searching at the Bata Shoe Museum.

Gervais, 53, has directed episodes of the original UK version of The Office as well as Extras, Life’s Too Short and his most recent series Derek.

He also co-wrote and co-directed the 2009 comedy The Invention of Lying, which had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). A year earlier, he starred in Ghost Town, which also debuted at TIFF.

A number of French films have been made into English films in Canada, including 1987’s Three Men and a Baby and 2009’s Chloe (both made in Toronto) and last year’s Brick Mansions (shot in Montreal).

Here’s what Gervais had to say on Twitter about his most recent stay in Toronto:

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