Dave Chappelle just proved that he’s practically immune to getting canceled.
The entertainer was just announced as part of a Netflix-sponsored comedy tour which was postponed from 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Besides Chappelle, other well-known headliners include Amy Schumer, Tina Fey, Wanda Sykes, Jerry Seinfeld, David Letterman, Chris Rock, Ali Wong, Hasan Minhaj, and Ronny Chieng, Deadline reported.
Chappelle’s inclusion in the special wouldn’t be noteworthy except for an incident that happened earlier this year. In October, a group of trans activists attempted to get his comedy special removed from Netflix, an attempted canceling of the 48-year-old Grammy nominee. Their efforts were ultimately unsuccessful as Netflix refused to take down the offending special, “The Closer.”
And the comedian himself also refused to issue a formal apology for the jokes he made. Instead, he blamed the media and “corporate interests” for fanning the flames of controversy. Chappelle offered to meet with trans employees at Netflix who were personally offended by his comedy but remained firm on his stance of avoiding a blanket statement of wrongdoing.
“I want everyone in this audience to know that even though the media frames it that it’s me versus that community, that is not what it is,” Chappelle said in an Instagram video in October, The Daily Wire reported.
“This has nothing to do with them. It’s about corporate interests and what I can say and what I cannot say,” he continued. “For the record, and I need you to know this, everyone I know from [the trans] community has been loving and supporting, so I don’t know what all this nonsense is about.”
Later, the funnyman insisted he was willing to talk about the issue, but only on his terms and with his opinions included. “You cannot have this conversation and exclude my voice from it,” Chappelle said on Instagram. “That is only fair. You have to answer the question — am I canceled or not? Now let’s go.”
Clearly, the answer to that rhetorical question is a resounding “No.” Netflix could have just stuck with a star-studded lineup sans Chappelle and still attracted a huge audience. Instead, they chose to include the provocateur despite knowing it could cause issues.
Comedian Hannah Gadsby was one of the most outspoken critics of Chappelle’s back when “The Closer” was first released.
“F*** you and your amoral algorithm cult,” she wrote on Twitter, referring to Netflix co-CEO Dave Sarandon. Gadsby’s name is not on the list of performers for the new comedy tour, but other guests include Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Pete Davidson, Ray Romano, Seth Rogen, Tig Notaro, Kevin Hart, Ken Jeong, Amy Poehler, Aziz Ansari, Bill Burr, Iliza Shlesinger, Chelsea Handler, Chris Rock, Conan O’Brien, Deon Cole, Eddie Izzard, and Ellen DeGeneres, according to Deadline.
Presales for the Netflix Is A Joke 2022 show begin December 7 and officially go on sale December 10. The event will be held April 28 – May 8, 2022, in Los Angeles.
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