We aren’t finished talking about the scandal between Dave Chappelle and Netflix. In the latest development, Netflix co- CEO and chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, stated with no uncertainty that Netflix stands with the comedian.
This was allegedly sent out in a memo to the company’s employees that they have zero intentions of taking down the controversial special The Closer.
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The ‘Most Popular’ Comedian
In the statement, released to the top 500 employees over the course of a two-day meeting, the co-CEO shared strategies about how they can deal with employees who are upset about the final decision on Chapelle’s special. He also pointed out that the comedian is a creative person and is being handled as such.
“Chappelle is one of the most popular stand-up comedians today, and we have a long-standing deal with him. His last special “Sticks & Stones,” also controversial, is our most-watched, stickiest, and most award-winning stand-up special to date.”
He also shared that they thrive on allowing their talent to flex their “creative freedom” and that will stand with them, “even though this means there will always be content on Netflix some people believe is harmful.”
Storming The… Netflix Meeting
The controversy was sparked by this very meeting after it was alleged that three junior staff members pushed their way in to express their disdain for Chappelle and his latest (well all) of his stand-up specials exclusive to the streaming giant.
It was made clear that at least one of the junior staffers was an out transgendered person and has since been suspended. However, Netflix claims that the employee was actually suspended before all this drama went down. A rep for the company cleared up some of the confusion over the weekend.
“It is absolutely untrue to say that we have suspended any employees for tweeting about this show.” They claim the suspension is the result of an incident that took place earlier and is “unrelated” to any social media posts.
Transgendered Community Outraged
One of the employees who was suspended came out after the special dropped and shared her grievances in a Tweet. Terra Field, a software engineer with the company wrote, “We launched another Chappelle special where he attacks the trans community, and the very validity of transness — all while trying to pit us against other marginalized groups.”
She was reportedly one of the employees who tried to enter the meeting that day. One of the other suspected employees is Dear White People former showrunner Jaclyn Moore who hopped on social media to quit her job earlier this month.
“After the Chappelle special, I can’t do this anymore. I won’t work for @netflix again as long as they keep promoting and profiting from dangerous transphobic content,” she wrote on Instagram following up another post she made on Twitter.
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While she meant to bring awareness to the trans community, instead Moore outraged a large number of people who believed it was shameful and shocking that she, a white woman was writing a show for the black community.
In addition to that backfiring, Netflix released a statement reiterating that they will not falter in the decision they made. In fact, it seems like Sarandos is saying the company doesn’t agree that The Closer was hate speech at all, or else it would have never made the cut.
“We don’t allow titles on Netflix that are designed to incite hate or violence, and we don’t believe The Closer crosses that line … Some people find the art of stand-up to be mean-spirited but our members enjoy it, and it’s an important part of our content offering.”