Canada markets close in 4 hours 17 minutes
  • S&P/TSX

    20,121.88
    -16.47 (-0.08%)
     
  • S&P 500

    4,237.17
    -10.27 (-0.24%)
     
  • DOW

    34,269.49
    -210.11 (-0.61%)
     
  • CAD/USD

    0.8239
    +0.0011 (+0.13%)
     
  • CRUDE OIL

    71.35
    +0.44 (+0.62%)
     
  • BTC-CAD

    49,273.73
    +5,365.45 (+12.22%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    1,008.80
    +39.96 (+4.12%)
     
  • GOLD FUTURES

    1,865.40
    -14.20 (-0.76%)
     
  • RUSSELL 2000

    2,332.05
    -3.76 (-0.16%)
     
  • 10-Yr Bond

    1.4870
    +0.0250 (+1.71%)
     
  • NASDAQ

    14,104.60
    +35.17 (+0.25%)
     
  • VOLATILITY

    16.64
    +0.99 (+6.33%)
     
  • FTSE

    7,155.83
    +21.77 (+0.31%)
     
  • NIKKEI 225

    29,161.80
    +213.07 (+0.74%)
     
  • CAD/EUR

    0.6791
    -0.0001 (-0.01%)
     

Dave Chappelle weighs in on Elon Musk's 'SNL' hosting gig, defends past transphobic jokes

·4 min read

Elon Musk created quite the buzz with his "Saturday Night Live" hosting debut – even Dave Chappelle had thoughts to share.

The comedian spoke to Joe Rogan in a rare, wide-ranging interview uploaded Friday, in which he reflected in a three-hour-plus podcast on his own comedy career and said he didn't understand the fuss over Musk's hosting gig, which has garnered backlash among fans even as some cast members said they were "excited."

"Like you said, no one can be woke enough,” Chappelle told Rogan of those criticizing the decision to invite Musk to the show.

“I’m torn, because I like a warrior for a good cause, but I’m really into tactics. You’re not going to nag people into behaving. … In fact, if you continue with this tone, even if you’re right, you’ll be very hard to hear."

Michael Che is 'excited' for Elon Musk's 'SNL' hosting gig: Tesla CEO pitches skit ideas

Chappelle said his own experiences with Musk had proved the Tesla CEO to be "incredibly kind."

“I teased him about being the richest man on earth, and he took it with good humor,” the comedian said. "What’s funny, I had hung out with him years ago. … We hung out on a tour bus, and he says to me that night … ‘I met you before.’ I’m like, ‘Well, I have no recollection.’ He looked kind of hurt."

Elon Musk brings mom to 'SNL' monologue: The billionaire jokes he's giving her Dogecoin for Mother's Day

Chappelle also divulged why he famously decided to walk away from his $50 million paycheck at the peak of his "Chappelle Show" success in 2005, after which he headed to South Africa and spent the next 12 years outside of television, recalling how others "couldn't understand" his decision.

Dave Chappelle is honored with the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on Oct. 27, 2019, in Washington.
Dave Chappelle is honored with the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on Oct. 27, 2019, in Washington.

" 'It was so much money. How could you do that?' " he recalled people saying. "Blah, blah, blah. If I had taken that money and finished the show, I would’ve gotten the money, but might’ve never been the same. ... The way people close to you react to it, like I ... failed or ruined my life. And, you know, when you’re cold, that phone don’t ring that often, and I had over a decade of sitting in that choice but I didn’t languish in that experience. I started doing stand-up for much better reasons than making it.”

Following his return to the spotlight, Chappelle released a 2019 Netflix special, "Sticks & Stones," that received some backlash for jokes deemed transphobic. In it, the comedian bemoaned how society was becoming increasingly politically correct and sarcastically discussed how difficult it must be for transgender people.

"They're so confusing," Chappelle said in the special. "I think they need to take some responsibility for my jokes because I didn't come up with this idea on my own. This idea that a person can be born in the wrong body – they have to admit, that's a (expletive) hilarious predicament.

"What if I was Chinese but born in this (expletive) body – that's not funny?" he continued, squinting his eyes. "And the rest of my life, I had to go around making that face: 'Hey, everybody, I'm Chinese!' And then everybody get mad: 'Stop making that face, that's offensive.' 'What? This is how I feel inside.' "

Dave Chappelle's new Netflix special: The comedian defends Michael Jackson, jokes about R. Kelly

Speaking to Rogan, Chappelle said he "still (doesn't) think those jokes are transphobic."

"I’m not going to have that discussion but if I ever have to, boy, I’m ready," he added.

Some of Eddie Murphy's older material has also faced backlash recently. In 2019, Murphy reflected on some of his past controversial jokes, dubbing them "cringey" but adding he ultimately has no regrets. Chappelle noted he believes a "good comedian is an indicator of the time" and doesn't think anything Murphy said was "embarrassing."

“I don’t get mad at a photograph because it wasn’t taken today,” Chappelle said. “In other words, whatever was going on in ’87, when he laid that set down, it was working. ... Sometimes I’m startled: ‘You could never do that now.’ ... I’m a comedian. I don’t smell any malice. I don’t think he was trying to hurt anybody."

Contributing: Patrick Ryan

More 'SNL': Miley Cyrus covers Dolly Parton in moving Mother's Day opening tribute

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Dave Chappelle discusses Elon Musk's 'SNL' gig on Joe Rogan podcast