Dave Chappelle asked his fans to stop watching Chapelle Show until he received royalties for views from media corporations who used it to capitalize
In November, standup comedian Dave Chappelle challenged his fans to do something that seemed counterproductive to advancing his career by asking the audience not to watch his hit TV show “Chappelle’s Show.” The sketch comedy series had begun streaming on several platforms, including Netflix in the weeks prior to his plea, but Chappelle was not happy about the move as he was not being paid royalties as part of the show being on streaming platforms.
Chappelle said he no longer had the rights to his name and likeness because of a contract he signed in the early 2000s with TV network Comedy Central. So he asked fans not to watch the show until Comedy Central and parent company CBS Viacom renegotiated their deal with Chappelle.
The bold strategy paid off for Chappelle as Friday morning he released a new 10-minute clip in which he says the network has given back the rights to his name and likeness along with paying him “millions of dollars.”
“I asked you to stop watching the show and thank God almighty for you, you did. You made that show worthless because without your eyes it’s nothing. And when you stopped watching it, they called me,” Chappelle says in the clip. “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.”
Chappelle didn’t disclose how much money he made, but the clip that was shared on his Instagram page ended with a montage of scenes from the show and an announcement that “Chappelle’s Show” returns to Netflix on Feb. 12. While the show’s run ended in 2005, it remains a pop-culture favorite and the return of the show was met with much excitement from fans old and new.
The comedian also thanked Netflix and Comedy Central for how they approached his situation and for their willingness to work with him.“And finally, after all these years, I can finally say to Comedy Central, It’s been a pleasure doing business with you,” Chappelle said.Along with the announcement about his show, Chappelle touched on his recent positive COVID-19 case and the Jan. 6 Insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. The clip of Chappelle’s announcement can be seen below. The video contains adult language and racial slurs that may not be suitable for all viewers.