The vegan comedian, writer, director and actor Ricky Gervais has donated £1.9 million to animal protection charities around the world. The creator of television shows such as After Life and The Office donated this amount raised from ticket sales from Armageddon, his latest stand-up world tour, to 11 animal protection charities. The beneficiaries of such generous donations are Dogs Matter, Animal SOS Sri Lanka, Catastrophes Cat Rescue, Chaldon Animal Sanctuary, Dogs On The Streets, Helping Rhinos, Millions of Friends, Mira Dogs, Paws2Rescue, PDSA and Wild Futures (which runs a primate sanctuary in Cornwall).
The money comes from extra profits made from the sale of Platinum Tickets for the Armageddon tour, which went on sale to guarantee premium seats at market rates, a move made to address the problem of ticket touts. On Christmas Day, Armageddon will be shown on Netflix, as the tour has now ended after Gervais played 85 sell-out arena dates across the globe throughout 2022 and 2023.
In his characteristic humour, Gervais said, “I hope the dogs, cats, rhinos and monkeys invest this money wisely, because when my career goes tits up I’ll need it back.”
He has supported campaigns for the end of the fur trade, against animal testing, to ban trophy hunting, to end bear bile farms, and against bullfighting, among others.
In January 2022, Gervais confirmed that he was vegan in a comment he made during an interview with Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show. Fallon asked him some questions about funny controversial subjects, and when he asked, ‘Who would you eat if he were a cannibal’, Gervais replied: “Well, I’m vegan, so it’s even worse for me.” In the last few weeks, he made a similar comment on the British talk show The Graham Norton Show, where he said again that he is vegan now.