Dave Chapelle RETURNS to Netflix despite being ‘cancelled’ after furious backlash over transgender comments in his special The Closer
Dave Chapelle is set to return to Netflix despite facing a huge backlash for his comments on transgender people in his special, The Closer, for the streaming giant.
Netlfix announced Monday that Chapelle will be headlining their Netflix Is a Joke festival at the Hollywood Bowl next year that will be partially filmed for an upcoming series.
It comes just a few months after Chappelle faced calls to be canceled over jokes made in his stand-up special which was almost entirely centered around members of the LGBTQ+ community.
The comedian courted controversy with his jokes in which he asserts ‘gender is a fact,’ and criticizes what he says is the thin skin of the trans community.
He’s back! Dave Chapelle RETURNS to Netflix despite being ‘cancelled’ after furious backlash over transgender comments in his special The Closer (Pictured, 2019)
His jokes were based upon earlier observations made by Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling’s who in 2019 stated that transgender women were not actually women and were a threat to her identity.
The backlash grew so heated that transgender employees at Netflix staged a walkout to protest the streaming service for airing the special, and CEO Ted Sarandos apologized for his communications to staff about the special.
The 11-day comedy festival features over 130 artists performing at 25 venues across Los Angeles from April 28 through May 8, including the likes of Amy Schumer, Tina Fey, Wanda Sykes, Jerry Seinfeld, David Letterman, Chris Rock and Ali Wong.
Not cutting ties: Netlfix announced Monday that Chapelle will be headlining their Netflix Is a Joke festival at the Hollywood Bowl next year
Responding to backlash over The Closer at the time, Chappelle posted a one-minute video posted to Instagram, saying: ‘To the transgender community, I am more than willing to give you an audience, but you will not summon me. I am not bending to anyone’s demands, and if you want to meet with me, I am more than willing to, but I have some conditions…’
‘First of all, you cannot come if you have not watched my special from beginning to end. You must come to a place of my choosing at a time of my choosing, and thirdly, you must admit that Hannah Gadsby is not funny.
‘Am I cancelled or not? Then let’s go!’ Chappelle yelled at the end of the video.
Tough criticism: Comedian Hannah Gadsby was critical of both Chapelle and Netflix for his special
Earlier this month, Chappelle ‘s high school did a U-turn as it said it will now ‘stand by’ their decision to honor the comedian by naming its theater after him after he was cancelled.
The Duke Ellington School of the Arts initially postponed its hall renaming ceremony after Chappelle drew harsh criticism for crudely comparing the genitals of trans women to plant-based meat alternatives in his special, The Closer.
Claims of a potential walkout by students ‘uncomfortable’ with showing support for the 48-year-old then led to them seemingly to cancel the event altogether.
But the Washington DC high school has now backtracked and will ‘stand behind our decision’ to rename the theater after Chapelle.