Ricky Gervais refuses to worry about the reception his upcoming comedy show Derek will garner, dismissing detractors of his latest work as "bullies".
The British funnyman plays the title role in the series, which is billed as the story of "a simple, vulnerable man working in an old people's home".
The pilot, which aired in the U.K. in April (12), attracted criticism from some viewers who claimed the show mocked people with learning difficulties.
Bosses at Britain's Channel 4 network have commissioned a full series, and Gervais insists he will not "pander" to those who take offence at his comedic style.
He tells Britain's Metro, "I'm not going to pander to the bullies. Comedy is subjective and so is offence. There's nothing you can say that won't offend someone, somewhere.
"You just have to do what you think is right and hope people get it. Don't water down an art form because some people won't get it. I'm not going to pander to people who try to impose their views on me."