Ricky Gervais believes TV directors are not taken as seriously as film directors.
Speaking at a launch event for the DVD of their film Cemetery Junction, Ricky's writing partner Stephen Merchant said he was surprised by the amount of attention they got as directors for the film, when they had always been directors.
Ricky said: "Do you know why that is? Because TV direction isn't taken seriously."
He continued: "But we always took it seriously. We always thought we were making a movie when we made The Office. We treated it like, 'This is going to be around for years to come, this is a really important show to us'. We did the same with Extras."
Stephen added: "The thing is, we sort of feel we've always been directors. For us, direction is as much about getting the right performances, and people who don't do it professionally often underestimate how hard it is to get a good performance."
Ricky claims good directing isn't about knowing the technical ins and outs of a camera, but about playing with the audience's emotions.
He said: "They just think it's knowing what lens to use. That's part of it but as Steve said, it's the nuance, the little things that you see the third time around that hit you on an emotional level. Those are the things I'm going to laugh and cry at, not the fact we did the dolly shot."
:: Cemetery Junction is out on Blu-ray and DVD on August 30.