There have been so many rumors over the years of the return of the comedic genius known as Dave Chappelle. To the dismay of his many fans, Chappelle walked off the set of his self-named show on Comedy Central in 2005. The funnyman was at the height of his career, it seemed, and his show was one of the network’s premiere viewings.
The 41-year-old comedian said in a recent interview, when he abruptly left his show in what he called a “Superman self-imposed exile” he never planned to leave the business permanently. Initially he took a two-week trip to South Africa and after a series of events; here he is a decade later.
Chappelle said he has not been as quiet or sequestered as many suspect. He spent nine out of the last 12 months doing standup on the road. He is in a good place right now and recently sold out 10 shows at Radio City Music Hall. According to Chappelle, he has been doing comedy while many supposed he was missing in action. According to the actor, in the industry if certain people do not see you it seems as if you do not exist, but that is far from true.
Of course says the comedian, he has good and bad days but if anything like suicide is ever attributed to him, suspect foul play. The Nutty Professor actor said his life is very good; he has money and time. His biggest concern is his children. The Chappelle children are older than when their father was doing his most notorious stand up routines, so he now has to use better judgment when making decisions because they affect more than just him.
Undoubtedly one of most respected comedians of his generation said he has finally come to terms with balancing the power and pressure that comes with being a celebrity. People called him crazy for leaving $50 million and a television program back in 2005, but the Half Baked actor said he did it to save his dignity. Chappelle added:
It was dramatic but I feel better. There is a method to my madness.
The sold out Radio City shows involved more than comedy. Chappelle included musical performances from some well-known artists such as Nas, Erykah Badu, Janelle Monae and the Roots. Not only does the comedian feel better, he looks better. The skinny, somewhat boyish guy he was in days of old has been transformed into a buff grown man.
Chappelle said he has moved on from what once was and has no plans to do another episode of the Chappelle’s Show or a Half Baked sequel. He added, in his comedic style:
When you see ‘Half Baked 2,’ make no mistake about it, I have completely run out of money.
At this stage of his life, Chappelle said if he is going to make a living, he wants to do it on his own terms. He told his audience he is just back long enough to make enough money so he can disappear again. The crowd laughed but hoped he was just joking; his fans are overjoyed to have their star player back.
By Cherese Jackson (Virginia)