Dave Chappelle’s new Netflix special prompts backlash, employees plan a walkout in protest

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Dave Chappelle’s new special, “The Closer,” is now streaming on Netflix. Photo by Mathieu Bitton

Netflix is in hot water after a series of failed PR moves following the release of Dave Chappelle’s new comedy special, “The Closer.” In the special, Chappelle makes antisemitic, homophobic and transphobic remarks, prompting some Netflix employees to speak out

Three employees were then suspended for attempting to attend a meeting they were not invited to, where “The Closer” would be discussed. The employees were later reinstated. 

In the interim, Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos stood by “The Closer” in a series of memos, writing, “We have a strong belief that content on screen doesn’t directly translate to real-world harm.” 

Ironically, the documentary “Disclosure,” which is available on Netflix, is all about how the media’s depiction of trans people has caused real harm to trans people over the years. 

Chappelle’s specials are extremely popular on Netflix, so it makes sense as a business decision to keep Chappelle on board and not pull his special. However, the streamer did pull an episode of Hansan Minhaj’s show “Patriot Act” in Saudi Arabia when the country’s murderous regime complained.   

Now trans Netflix employees and allies are planning a walkout on October 20 in protest of Sarandos’ statements.

Credits

Guest:

Host:

Kim Masters

Producer:

Kaitlin Parker