In a similar move to Netflix, HBO Max has announced that it will stop streaming episodes of Chappelle’s Show following a personal request from Dave Chappelle. According to Chief Content Officer Casey Bloys, the show will be pulled from the service at the end of the year despite HBO Max having no legal obligation to remove the show or a current working relationship with the comedian. Via Variety:
“We had a conversation with Dave. I won’t get into it, but it’s very clear that it’s a very unique and specific and emotional issue he’s got,” Bloys told Variety‘s executive editor of TV, Daniel Holloway. “So at the end of the year, at the end of this year, December 31st, we’re going to honor his request and take the show down.”
Considering HBO Max has been making aggressive moves to boost its content offering, the decision to pull the iconic sketch comedy series is surprising, but it also speaks to Chappelle’s power in the entertainment industry. The comedian is a huge draw for Netflix, which agreed to stop streaming Chappelle’s Show after the comedian approached them with his opinion that airing the show is like “fencing stolen goods.” Chappelle revealed the exchange with Netflix in a surprise stand-up clip posted to Instagram where he detailed his feelings on his old show being sold without his involvement.
“I found out that these people were streaming my work and they never had to ask me or they never have to tell me. Perfectly legal ‘cause I signed the contract. But is that right? I didn’t think so either.” Chappelle said in the video. He went on to explain how Netflix did right by him when they simply could’ve kept streaming the show. “That’s why I f*ck with Netflix. Because they paid me my money, they do what they say they’re going to do, and they went above and beyond what you could expect from a businessman.”