Dave Chappelle is Dreaming in His New Year’s Eve Special

Comedian Dave Chappelle speaks onstage during the 90th Annual Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 4, 2018 in Hollywood, California
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Dave Chappelle is back with a brand-new special and ready to push the boundaries of comedy. Netflix recently released a teaser for his New Year’s Eve special called Dave Chappelle: The Dreamer. Chappelle’s most recent special The Closer, premiered on Netflix in 2021 and was called for removal by people who criticized it for being transphobic and homophobic.

Despite the backlash from viewers and even Netflix employees, Netflix stood by the special and did not remove it from the platform or add a disclaimer. Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos said that the streamer is “consistent with our comedy offering, it’s consistent with Dave Chappelle’s comedy brand and this is … one of those times when there’s something on Netflix that you’re not going to like.” When The Closer was released, it was shared that it was the last of the new Chappelle specials for the streaming service. However, in 2022, Netflix revealed that a new special was in the works.

Comedian/actor Dave Chappelle performs at Radio City Music Hall on June 19, 2014 in New York City

Mike Coppola/Getty Images

In the teaser for Dave Chappelle: The Dreamer, iconic actor Morgan Freeman narrates, “What do you dream about? Not the dreams you have in your sleep, the ones you hold in your heart. Don’t be intimidated by the audacity of your dream — be inspired by it.” The scene cuts to Freeman sitting next to Chappelle, watching the special. Freeman added, “What happens to a dream deferred? Lucky for Dave, he doesn’t know.”

Dave Chappelle: For What It's Worth Dave Chappelle, 2004

Greg Gorman/Showtime Networks/Everett Collection

Dave Chappelle: The Dreamer was shot in his hometown of Washington, DC at the historic Lincoln Theatre. Stan Lathan directed this special along with all of Chappelle’s Netflix specials. The deal with Netflix was pretty iconic considering he was paid $20 million per special. Check out the teaser trailer for the special which will premiere on New Year’s Eve (December 23, 2023). Will you be watching during your holiday festivities?

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Classic Comedy Duos

March 2021

Chuckle at television & films funniest comic duos.

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