Netflix has announced that Dave Chappelle will be headlining a show at the Hollywood Bowl next year as part of the Netflix Is a Joke Festival, an 11-day comedy fest with over 130 artists performing at 25 venues across Los Angeles from April 28 through May 8.
The event marks the comedian’s latest partnership with the streaming service since September’s controversial stand-up special The Closer, which sparked walkouts and internal turmoil at Netflix over what many said were transphobic jokes — and earned the support of the likes of Joe Rogan.
Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos responded to the special’s fallout by admitting to fumbling communication within a leaked staff memo where he wrote that Chappelle’s “content on screen doesn’t directly translate to real-world harm.” He says he should have led with “more humanity,” although he stands by the special as being essentially harmless.
On the same festival lineup that offers Chappelle a prime slot is the Greek Theatre-hosted STAND OUT: An LGBTQ+ Celebration with Bob the Drag Queen, Eddie Izzard, Fortune Feimster, Gina Yashere, Guy Branum, James Adomian, Joel Kim Booster, Judy Gold, Mae Martin, Margaret Cho, Marsha Warfield, Matteo Lane, Patti Harrison, River Butcher, Sam Jay, Sandra Bernhard, Scott Thompson, Solomon Georgio, Tig Notaro, Trixie Mattel, Wanda Sykes and more.
With over 100 performers booked, Netflix Is a Joke tucked Chappelle’s name away seven lines down on the festival’s official lineup poster in between Damon Wayans and David Arnold, who also share a line with David Letterman and Dax Shepard.
The schedule for the event is mostly finalized, with additional show details from select performers awaiting confirmation to be announced ahead of the festival. Some shows will be recorded and released on Netflix in full at a later date; Chappelle’s will not be recorded.
Back in October, Chappelle made a return to the stage with none other than Rogan for a sold-out arena show in New Orleans. During the set, the comedian cracked jokes about cancellation and “PC culture,” receiving a standing ovation from a crowd of 17,000 fans. Between the individual scale of his own shows and his work with Netflix, the funniest joke may be expecting any accountability to come with the notion of being cancelled.