Anthony Anderson shared his feelings about the scandal with Dave Chappell after the Alma Mater honor change


It’s fair to say that these days Dave Chappelle has become a kind of polarizing figure in Hollywood. He has long been known for his sharp style of humor, but more recently the comedian caused controversy due to the fact that he told jokes that many perceived as transphobic. Despite the negative reaction, Chappelle was going to name a theater in his alma mater in high school after him, although after hot-tempered questions and answers at school, he abandoned this idea and proposed a new one. After that, fellow comedian Anthony Anderson shared his feelings about the name change.

During his formative years, Dave Chappelle attended the Duke Ellington School of Art in his native Washington, DC. During this week’s naming ceremony, Chappelle addressed the criticism he has faced over jokes featured in his latest Netflix special, “Closer.” Then he said that this place should be called a Theater of Artistic Freedom and Self-expression. When TMZ subsequently contacted Anthony Anderson after the event, the dark-haired graduate shared positive thoughts and praised the decision:

I think it’s a cool move, not just for Dave, but for everyone else.… It’s a selfless step not to have a theater named after him, but to give it a little more meaning for the community and for people who tell their truth.

Dave Chappelle’s hit The Closer was broadcast back in October, and soon after its release, celebrities and LGBTQ+ organizations such as GLAAD came out against it. Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos addressed the situation at the time, saying he did not believe the special “crosses that line (hate speech),” and referred to the comic being entitled to his “artistic freedom.” The executive himself became embroiled in further controversy after internal emails explaining why the special offer would not be removed became public. Sarandos later apologized for the way things were handled.

Since then, the creator of the Chappelle Show has become a topic of discussion among comedy fans. Some on social media claim he crossed the line with his jokes, while others believe he was expressing his freedoms as an artist. During the same interview with TMZ, Anthony Anderson was asked if he considered the comic a pioneer of freedom of speech, and the actor spoke more honestly:

But my supporters of free speech go back to Dr. Martin Luther King and others like him. I’m a friend and fan of Dave Chappelle, and I love what he does. And many people may disagree with some of the things he says, but that’s their opinion.

The former star of “Law and Order” is not the only comedic character commenting on the current status of the controversial comic. Jarrod Carmichael shared some strong thoughts about the artist and the state of stand-up. Carmichael, who recently declared himself gay, chastised the “Star is Born” graduate and some of his contemporaries for trying to “create a scarecrow for ticket sales,” and in this case this scarecrow was the cancellation of culture. Carmichael also wondered why a comedy veteran of his stature wants to “die on the hill,” on which he tells “childish jokes.”

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to deny the strong feelings people have for some of Dave Chappelle’s material. In May, he was attacked on stage during a performance at the Hollywood Bowl. After receiving several charges of wrongdoing, the attacker, who identifies as bisexual, explained that he found the comic’s jokes about LGBTQ+ “defiant.” Against this background and Chappelle’s proposal for a new Duke Ellington theater, perhaps other stars, such as Anthony Anderson, will express their opinion. What exactly they will say remains to be seen.