During a recent interview with CBS This Morning co-host Gayle King, Dave Chappelle spoke out not only about his famous decision to walk away from The Dave Chappelle Show at the height of his popularity but also his return to the spotlight with his new Netflix specials.
“I was talkin’ to a guy… he basically said to me that comedy is a reconciliation of paradox,” Chappelle recalled of his decision to leave his show. “And I think that that was a irreconcilable moment for me. That I was in this very successful place, but the emotional content of it didn’t feel anything like what I imagined success should feel like. It just didn’t feel right.”
Still, he admitted to missing the show, saying, “But ‘Chappelle’s Show’s’ like breakin’ up with a girl and you still like her. But in your mind you’re like, ‘That b**** is crazy. I’m not goin’ back.’”
When asked if it was the fame that scared him, Chappelle admitted, “Fame, yeah, but not so much that I get on a plane to Africa. Fame is not that kind of scary. But it is – fame is a horrifying concept when it’s aimed at you, you know? At the end of the day, it’s so – you don’t have that much control over it. You just try to conduct yourself as best you can.
“Even when you walked away in 2005, you were still working. It’s just that we didn’t know all the things that you were doing. You really stayed low,” King said.
“I found an altitude I was comfortable with. I found a way that – to do what I liked to do and avoid some of the parts of it that I was uncomfortable with,” Chappelle replied, later adding that he was trying to work to a point where he felt like his life would “mean something.”
You can check out the full interview here.