Jon Stewart puts on his PR hat to defend his longtime friend, comedian Dave Chappelle, who Stewart says wasn’t trying to divide in his latest comedy special, “The Closer.”
Netflix employees staged a walkout on Wednesday after taking to social media and posting internal memos to the streamer’s co-CEO Ted Sarandos, calling for the comedy offering to be taken off the platform after many felt that Chappelle made jokes that negatively impacted the transgender community.
“He’s a different element but I know he’s one of my favorite people on the planet and he’s just a good, decent… – you know, if there’s a communication problem I’m sure – I love this guy, like as a person, ”Stewart, 58, told TMZ Thursday on Capitol Hill.
“He’s warm and wise and all those things,” added “The Problem with Jon Stewart” host, who was in Washington DC to lobby for approval of medical bills for military veterans exposed to toxic burns. The former cornerstone of the “Daily Show” discussed the issue in a recent episode of his Apple TV + series.
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Protesters on Wednesday held signs outside a Netflix office building in Los Angeles, Calif., With the phrases “Trans lives matter” and “Transphobia is no joke”, among others. .
When asked if he thought it was a promising idea for Chappelle to agree to a meeting with rabid Netflix employees, Stewart replied why not if it led to an open dialogue between the comic and those in the know. felt offended by Chappelle’s jokes.
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“Listen, if that sparks a conversation where people are more on the same page in terms of understanding, that would be great, but I know his intention is never hurtful – like, it’s just not that kind of person, ”Stewart said in his defense. by the speaker “Sticks and Stones”, 48.
“And if it is [hurtful], it’s certainly not intentional, “Stewart insisted.” He really is – he’s a good man. “
Meanwhile, amid cries from detractors to cancel Chappelle for his controversial remarks, the comedian has just performed in front of a sold-out crowd in London on the night of the Netflix employee walkout.
According to Variety, Chappelle told comedy fans that he plans to take “The Closer” on the road if it is taken off Netflix. Participants claimed that Chappelle said he would screen the special in 10 cities across the United States.
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A person reportedly told the media that Chappelle had mentioned that the protest in Los Angeles “was not favorable” for him. Another said the artist appeared “baffled” by the charges of transphobia and homophobia against him.
Podcast host and commentator Joe rogan also went to bat for Chappelle amid the uproar and said the jokes are “by no means transphobic”.
On Tuesday’s episode of “The Joe Rogan Experience,” Rogan revealed that he and Chappelle “texted” about the Netflix drama and that he was “weathering the storm”.
Fox News Jessica Napoli and Joseph A. Wulfsohn contributed to this report.
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