Comedian Dave Chappelle is arguably one of the funniest and most popular comedians living today. Not only does he offer fans many laughs but he also provides insightful commentary on the current state of the world.
Throughout his career, Dave Chappelle has found himself at the center of a controversy here and there — most notably when he abruptly left his hit Comedy Central show, Chappelle's Show. Netflix was streaming reruns of the popular comedy sketch show up until the show was suddenly nowhere to be found. So, why was Chappelle's Show removed from Netflix?
Dave Chappelle asked for ‘Chappelle's Show’ to be removed from Netflix.
Dave Chappelle has a nice deal going with Netflix including several comedy specials, so when fans noticed that his 2003 hit series was no longer available to stream, people wondered what exactly was going on.
It turns out that the leading man himself, Dave Chappelle, was the one who requested that Netflix remove it because the original rights holder, ViacomCBS, began licensing the show without his permission.
Now, Netflix subscribers will no longer have access to the show’s three seasons. Netflix first made the show available on Nov. 1, 2020, and it’s no longer discoverable on the platform as of Nov. 24. Netflix declined to comment on the removal.
Dave took to Instagram to air his frustration with the licensing of the show.
The comedian posted an 18-minute clip of unreleased standup, titled “Unforgiven,” to his Instagram account where he went into detail about his issues with Netflix streaming Chappelle's Show.
“People think I made a lot of money from Chappelle’s Show. When I left that show, I never got paid. They didn’t have to pay me because I signed the contract. But is that right? I found out that these people were streaming my work and they never had to ask me or they never have to tell me. Perfectly legal because I signed the contract. But is that right? I didn’t think so either,” he explained.
Dave went on to praise Netflix for honoring his request to remove the show.
Dave explained on Instagram that he called Netflix and simply asked for them to remove the show because he was not receiving any sort of royalties from these streams.
“I called them and I told them that this makes me feel bad. And you want to know what they did? They agreed that they would take it off their platform just so I could feel better. That’s why I f--k with Netflix. Because they paid me my money, they do what they say they’re going to do, and they went above and beyond what you could expect from a businessman. They did something just because they thought that I might think that they were wrong,” he said.
Dave Chappelle asked fans to please stop watching ‘Chappelle's Show.’
Dave described streaming the series as theft and pleaded with his fans not to watch the show so long as ViacomCBS continues withholding royalty payments to Dave. At this current moment, Chappelle's Show is off of Netflix, but is still available to stream on HBO Max and CBS All Access.
"I think that if you are f--king streaming that show you’re fencing stolen goods,” he said. “So I’m not going to the agents, I’m coming to my real boss, I’m coming to you. I’m begging you — if you ever liked me, if you ever think there was anything worthwhile about me, I’m begging you, please don’t watch that show. I’m not asking you to boycott any network. Boycott me. Boycott Chappelle’s Show. Do not watch it unless they pay me.”