Netflix Removes "Chappelle's Show" Because Dave Chappelle Asked Them

Remember when actor/comedian Dave Chappelle hosted the first post-election episode of NBC's Saturday Night Live– in particular, his killer opening monologue? He started off with a touching, poignant reflection on what his great-grandfather had to live through to become the man that he was- and then used it to pivot to how streaming services are running his classic Comedy Central series Chappelle's Show and he's not seeing a dime for any of it (the full monologue is below). To say he has a point would be an understatement: as of November 1, the show is streaming on Netflix, CBS All Access, HBO Max, and Comedy Central. Now, you can take Netflix off that list because the streaming giant is no longer airing it– because Chappelle asked them to. "People think I made a lot of money from Chappelle's Show," he explained. "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 'cause I signed the contract. But is that right? I didn't think so either."

Dave Chappelle Returns to SNL!
Dave Chappelle Returns to SNL!

In a video of a stand-up set posted on Tuesday, Chappelle further elaborated about his deal with ViacomCBS that allowed the series to be syndicated without him seeing a dime. Having worked with Netflix for the past four years, Chappelle was understandably more than a bit bothered (super understatement there) by the streaming service airing his show- and he was going to let them know about it. "And when I found out they were streaming Chappelle's Show, I was furious. How could they not know? So you know what I did? I called them and I told them that this makes me feel bad," Chappelle revealed. "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 fuck 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. And I do — I think that if you are fucking streaming that show you're fencing stolen goods." Here's a look at the video from Chappelle's routine:

Here's a look back to Chappelle's opening monologue from the post-election night edition of SNL, where he first brought his issue with Chappelle's Show and streaming rights to light:

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About Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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