'Office' Star Gervais Has Last Laugh

04/19/2004 AT 06:18 PM EDT

Golden Globe winner Ricky Gervais was crowned the King of British comedy on Sunday -- an honor he nearly missed, because the BBC initially forgot to nominate him, PEOPLE reports.

After being added to the ballot at the last minute, Gervais, 42, had the last laugh as he went home with two BAFTAs (Britain's equivalent of the Emmy). Gervais won for best comedy performance, in "The Office Christmas Special," and for best situation comedy.

At the ceremony, Gervais referred to his victory as the "end to the chapter," given that the "Christmas Special" was the final episode of "The Office." He also thanked the BBC for "getting round" to putting his name on the ballot, despite the fact he'd already taken home the award for the past two years.

The ceremony, held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in central London, took place during a typical rain-soaked Sunday afternoon, leaving the red carpet so wet it was foaming soap suds and Gervais heading back to Los Angeles, the scene of his double Golden Globe victories earlier this year.

"The Office," about a firm being shut down due to downsizing, was a surprise winner that night in Hollywood, when it was named best comedy series over nominees including "Sex and the City." Gervais was also named best actor in a comedy series.

"I was asked ... how this compares to the Golden Globes," said Gervais. (There) you see Michael Douglas, Jude Law and Tom Cruise. ... Up here I see ... the painting bloke and the gardening bloke."

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