At one point in the earlier part of the millennium, Dave Chappelle was the most commercially successful and recognizable comedian in the country. Numerous circumstances pushed Chappelle to retreat from the limelight and the world of comedy. Luckily for fans of the well-renowned funnyman, he made a full return to the limelight by 2016, scoring a coveted $20 million-per-release special deal with Netflix, releasing a total of five thus far with the streaming giant. 

On a recent appearance on Joe Rogan’s The Joe Rogan Experience podcast, the acclaimed comedian dished about what inspired his return to stand-up comedy as well as the situation behind his classic comedy sketch series Chappelle’s Show. At the tail end of 2020, Netflix removed the series from their platform after Chappelle reported he did not receive a dime of royalties and requested fan’s not to tune in. 

Dave Chappelle Explains How He Got The Rights To "Chappelle's Show" Back
 Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images

“You’re the first guy to beat the system. You’re the first guy to get f*cked over by the system, go public with it and then get your money,” points out Rogan to Chappelle while on the podcast. 

This then launched Chappelle into explaining exactly how he was able to regain the rights to his short-lived but wildly popular Comedy Central series Chappelle’s Show. He credited public opinion for helping him regain the rights rather than the court system while adding he was less bitter towards Viacom and Comedy Central as he matured.

“It wasn’t a court of law,” Chappelle said. “I don’t believe I would have got anything in a court of law. I think, in the court of public opinion, it was a good time for me to say my piece and through the years it wasn’t something I would harp on…It was something I was actually reluctant to talk about.” 

Listen to the full reflection above and let us know what you think down in the comments.