Weeks after Dave Chappelle called for fans to stop streaming Chappelle’s Show, HBO Max has announced that it is taking the show off its platforms. Chappelle called out ViacomCBS and Comedy Central on Instagram last month, after the network, which first aired his show from 2003 to 2006, licensed his sketch comedy series to Netflix and HBO Max without paying him or telling him about the deal.
“They (ViacomCBS) didn’t have to pay me because I signed the contract,” Chappelle said in the clip. “But is that right? 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, who has a long-standing deal with Netflix, called the streaming service to make his feelings known and it was the first to remove Chappelle’s Show from its offerings. Now, HBO MAX is following suit.
“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,” Casey Bloys, chief content officer of HBO and HBO Max told Variety. “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.”
Chappelle also revealed in the now viral Instagram clip that HBO actually passed on his pitch for Chappelle’s Show before he took to Comedy Central.
“They said, literally, ‘What do we need you for?’ That’s what they told me as they kicked me out of the office, ‘What do we need you for?’” he said. “And here we are all these years later and they’re streaming the very show I was pitching to them. So I’m asking them, what do you need me for?”
With the show leaving HBO MAX at the end of the year, only the ViacomCBS-owned streamer CBS All Access will have Chappelle's Show available.