British funnyman Ricky Gervais admits Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross went "too far" with their prank phone calls to FAWLTY TOWERS star ANDREW SACHS - but insists the whole episode was "blown out of proportion".
Comedian Brand quit his job as a BBC radio presenter following outrage over a stunt in which he and fellow British broadcaster Ross recorded lewd voicemail messages on 78-year-old Sachs' voicemail.
During the calls, Forgetting Sarah Marshall actor Brand gloated about sleeping with Sachs' granddaughter Georgina Baillie.
Gervais, who is a close friend and neighbour of Ross, concedes the pair's conduct was "wrong" - but also feels too much was made of the incident.
He says, "It did go too far, yes. Jonathan was devastated. I've spoken to him a few times and he knows he was in the wrong. The whole thing got blown out of proportion. Obviously what they did was wrong. It wasn't very funny.
"They made a mistake because they picked on a real person and they left the message on a human being's answerphone. They could have sworn a hundred times and said some other ridiculous things and that would have been OK. But it was about a human being.
"The sex and the baying for blood and all that. It was wrong. But they do know that now. Jonathan has apologised. He knew he made a mistake - but he didn't kill anyone."