In the wake of the walkout protest conducted by Netflix employees upset with Dave Chappelle’s latest comedy special, representatives for the comedian have stated that he’s willing to sit down and talk with them.
“Dave stands by his art: No more jokes about transgenders until we can all laugh together,” an unidentified representative for Chappelle reportedly said afterwards to TMZ.
“The streets are talking and Dave is listening. At some point, when everyone is open, I’m sure the communities will come together.” This news comes after a few dozen LGBTQ+ employees, angered by the comedian’s comments about the LGBTQ+ community and trans people in particular in The Closer, staged a walkout in protest over the special and the streaming giant’s internal mishandling of the situation.
According to transgender activist and journalist Ashlee Marie Preston, a spokesperson for those protesting, an invitation was extended to Chappelle to come to the protest outside of Netflix’s offices in Los Angeles, California. “I invited Dave Chappelle to come and have a transformative dialogue about the harm that was committed. He chose not to show up,” Preston said when interviewed on the scene.
The representative for Chappelle however, refutes that, claiming they’re unsure why that would be said since they claim no invitation was received by their camp. Dave Chappelle is currently performing in London, and has stated that if Netflix were to pull the special from their platform that he’d consider doing a U.S. tour in response.
Netflix has been flustered by the backlash to the special, with CEO Ted Sarandos admitting that they haven’t handled it well after word got out about the company punishing employees who crashed a board meeting in protest over the special and the streaming giant’s treatment of those employees who spoke out publicly regarding Chappelle’s jokes against trans people.