Jon Stewart chimed in on the Dave Chappelle/Netflix situation and said that the famous comic was one of his favorite people in the world and that the two parties should open a dialogue.
“You know if there’s miscommunication,” he told a TMZ cameraman, “I’m sure that communication is probably the way through.”
Stewart also said that Chappelle was “one of my favorite people on the planet,” calling him good and decent.
Chappelle’s representatives recently said that the comic was willing to talk to Netflix employees about the special, and the cameraman relayed that information to Stewart.
“If this spurs a conversation where people get more on the same page in terms of understanding that’d be great,” he said, “but I know his intention is never hurtful. He’s just not that kind of person. And if it is (hurtful) it’s certainly unintentional.”
Chappelle is in hot water with the trans community over comments he made in his Netflix comedy special The Closer. Some people in the LGBTQ+ community feel that the comments were transphobic and could incite violence against the trans community.
Civil organizations like GLAAD have asked for the special to be removed from Netflix. The National Black Justice Coalition also asked for the removal of the special, sharing that this year is “on track to be the deadliest year on record for transgender people in the United States.”
Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos has so far rebuffed requests to remove the special, saying that he may have handled the controversy poorly but he won’t remove it. He said he definitely could have handled the situation differently.
“Obviously, I screwed up that internal communication… Of course storytelling has real impact in the real world. I reiterate that because it’s why I work here, it’s why we do what we do. That impact can be hugely positive, and it can be quite negative.
We are trying to support creative freedom and artistic expression among the artists that work at Netflix. Sometimes, and we do make sure our employees understand this, because of that… there will be things on Netflix that you dislike. That you even find to be harmful. Where we’ll definitely draw the line is on something that would intentionally call for physically harming other people or even remove protections.”
While major stars like Elliot Page have spoken out against the special, it doesn’t look like Dave Chappelle‘s new special will be leaving Netflix any time soon.