Dave Chappelle had made it clear that he would not approve of ViacomCBS’s licensing of his Comedy Central series Chappelle’s Show without paying him a dime. The comedian talked about it during his last Saturday Night Live monologue, and now he’s done something about it.
In a video titled Unforgiven posted on Instagram this morning, Chappelle said he asked Netflix, where he has a deal on standup specials, to turn off Chappelle’s show, which the streamer didn’t exclusively license from the service.
Netflix complied with Chappelle’s request and removed the show overnight last night, a representative for the streamer who was confirmed to Deadline. The show was streamed on Netflix in the US on November 1st. Chappelle’s Show, owned by ViacomCBS, continues to be available for purchase in the company’s Comedy Central and CBS All Access branches and was recently licensed by HBO Max. Companies that license a program pay the seller, who in turn has to compensate the creatives on the show.
“People think I made a lot of money off of Chappelle’s show,” says Chappelle in the video that was shot recently during a stand-up set, which recalls his comedy career. “When I left this show, I never got paid. You (ViacomCBS) didn’t have to pay me because I signed the contract. But is that correct? I found out that these people were streaming my work and they never had to ask me or never had to tell me. Completely legal because I signed the contract. But is that correct? I didn’t think so either. That’s why I enjoy working for Netflix. I enjoy working for Netflix because when all these bad things happened to me, that company didn’t even exist. And when I found out they were streaming Chappelle’s show, I was furious. How could they not – how could they not know? Do you know what i did I called them and told them it made me feel bad. And you want to know what they did? They agreed that they would take it off their platform just so I could feel better. That’s why I fuck with Netflix. Because they paid me my money, they do what they say they will and they have exceeded anything that can be expected of a businessman. They did something just because they thought I might think they were wrong. And I do – I think if you fuck streaming it shows that you are fencing stolen goods. “
The story goes on
Chappelle repeated his appeal to the fans, which he made at SNL earlier this month. “So I don’t go to the agents, I come to my real boss – I come to you. I beg you – if you’ve ever liked me, if you ever think that there is something about me that is valuable, I beg you don’t watch this show. I’m not asking you to boycott a network – boycott me. Boycott Chappelle’s Show. Don’t look at it if they don’t pay me. “
Chappelle was the co-creator, executive producer, and star of Chappelle’s Show, which made an abbreviated but highly successful appearance on Comedy Central from 2003 to 2006.
Netflix has been Chappelle’s home for four years with an offer for stand-up specials.
More from Deadline
Best of Deadline
Sign up for Deadline’s newsletter. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest news.