Dave Chappelle: Netflix CEO backs comedian in show of public support after trans-row

Dave Chappelle
Dave Chappelle

The Netflix boss Ted Sarandos was seen laughing candidly with Dave Chappelle

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Comedian Dave Chappelle who was recently embroiled in a trans-row over one of his Netflix shows, has been backed by Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos in a public show of support.

While introducing rap star Jay-Z at the 36th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame introduction ceremony, Mr Chappelle said “'I would like to apologise...nah, I'm just f***ing with y'all”, before going backstage to give Mr Sarandos a handshake and take a photo with him.

The Netflix boss was seen laughing candidly with Dave Chappelle, who also hugged Mr Sarandos's wife and former US Ambassador to the Bahamas Nicole Avant.

The US comedian previously sparked controversy with his show The Closer, in which he said “gender is a fact” and shared his backing for JK Rowling, who has also attracted criticism for her comments about the concept of biological sex.

Netflix employees are said to have reacted with fury to his comments and recently organised a walkout over the streaming giant’s decision to air the special.

The Netflix co-CEO has supported Dave Chappelle since The Closer was released on the streaming platform, in a company wide email Netflix said:

'We know that a number of you have been left angry, disappointed and hurt by our decision to put Dave Chappelle's latest special on Netflix,'

'With "The Closer," we understand that the concern is not about offensive-to-some content but titles which could increase real world harm (such as further marginalizing already marginalized groups, hate, violence etc).

'Last year, we heard similar concerns about 365 Days and violence against women. While some employees disagree, we have a strong belief that content on screen doesn't directly translate to real-world harm,' he continued.”

Saturday’s event took place only a day after two transgender employees of Netflix have reportedly filed civil claims against the streaming giant, claiming the company had retaliated against them for raising complaints about Dave Chappelle’s content.