Netflix CEO defends controversial Dave Chapelle special: ‘We would do it again and again’

Despite the mountain of controversy comedian Dave Chappelle has generated with his no-holds-barred stand-up, it would appear that Netflix isn’t planning to cut him off any time soon.

CEO Reed Hastings sat down with journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin at The New York Times 2022 DealBook conference, where he was open about future partnerships between Netflix and Chappelle.

“Dave Chappelle created some controversy, as you know, on your platform, and we were talking — we’ve been talking also about platforming sometimes hate speech or antisemitic speech or other kinds of speech. How do you think about that today?” Sorkin asked Hastings.


“Our brand is trying to be the most exciting entertainment company in the world, and Chappelle’s dead center for us. He is the best or one of the best. And that special was one of the most entertaining and watched specials we’ve ever had,” the CEO responded without hesitation.

“We would do it again and again. So we clearly need to be more, obvious and direct about that, which we’ve done since, you know, with employees and with people who care about Netflix — that we’re about entertainment and Chappelle’s very entertaining and you know, provocative. And again, that’s the core of what we’re doing,” he added.

Chappelle kicked off a firestorm of controversy with his Netflix original stand-up specials and his defense of “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling. His crime, according to critics, is being “transphobic.” Liberals took to social media following his comments in an attempt to “cancel” him, but it was not enough to get Netflix to drop the comedian.

As BizPac Review reported in October 2021, Chappelle was largely unphased by the attack on his career.

“If this is what being canceled is about, I love it,” Chappelle said as fans went wild according to Deadline.

He also stated, “I don’t know what to tell you, except I’m a bad motherf***er.”

“F*** Twitter. F*** NBC News, ABC News, all these stupid-ass networks,” he reportedly said according to The Hollywood Reporter. “I’m not talking to them. I’m talking to you. This is real life.”

Chappelle made his comments in Los Angeles during a screening of his latest unnamed documentary. The event was sold out and hyped performances from Snoop Dogg, Stevie Wonder, Jon Hamm, Nas, Lizzo, poet Amir Sulaiman, Jeff Rose, Talib Kweli, and others.


Sierra Marlee


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