“I Never Really Did Get To Celebrate ‘Chappelle Show’ As A Victory”
Photo Credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100
Dave Chappelle and Naomi Campbell linked up for a lengthy interview as a part of her No Filter with Naomi series. The pair not only spoke of their mutal admiration and respect of each other, but also about Chappelle’s career as a comedian, his Juke Joint events, and what ushered him to start using his Instagram account.
Chappelle also recounted his first major acclaim for his beloved Chappelle’s Show series, which was when the Rick James sketch was released. The comedian recalled how, the day after the sketch aired, he heard people talking about it as he rode on the subway to Comedy Central’s production office.
“The whole way, all anybody on the car was talking about, was my show,” Chappelle said. “They didn’t know I was sitting there…I was hearing them laughing and talking about the show that was on last night, and I said, ‘Well, that’s a big one.’”
He then remembered how the Chappelle’s Show DVD was also released that same day, where over a million copies were sold. Unfortunately, that was also the day the comedian’s contract was up.
“The assumption was, ‘I’m gonna be rich, I got ’em.’ Of course, it didn’t work out that way but there was the mmoment where I realized my relationship with the network had changed, my relationship with the industry had changed, and my relationship with the fans had changed,” he said. “I made something that people really, really liked. And that was a great feeling.”
“And it was sad because it was a shortlived feeling. I never really got to celebrate the Chappelle Show as a victory,” he added. “I’ve always had bad feelings about it because of how it ended.”
Recently, Chappelle shared he had a discussion with Comedy Central about Chappelle’s Show after asking Netflix and HBO Max to remove the TV series from their respective streaming platforms. He shared the news in a video that was taken during one of his socially distanced comedy shows in Austin, Texas.
“I asked you to stop watching the show and thank God almighty for you, you did,” he said in the video. “You made that show worthless, because without your eyes it’s nothing.”
“And when you stopped watching it, they called me,” Chappelle continued. “And I got my name back. And I got my license back. And I got my show back. And they paid me millions of dollars. Thank you very much.”