Comedian and actor Dave Chappelle issued a statement after he was violently attacked on stage during his final appearance at the Hollywood Bowl during the Netflix is a Joke festival.
Chappelle was violently attacked on stage towards the end of his set with police arresting 23-year old male Isaiah Lee on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon.
According to NBC News Los Angeles, Lee was armed with a replica gun “that can eject a knife blade.” However, they noted, “It is not clear whether he used the weapon in the attack.”
— abazar 🦇🔊 (@abazar) May 4, 2022
After attacking Chappelle, the man was mobbed by the event and Chappelle’s own security with BuzzFeed reporter Brianna Sacks claiming they “rushed and started punching and kicking the s*** out of Chappelle’s attacker.”
Police and rescue would eventually arrive on the scene and transport the suspect into an ambulance.
Just came out of the Hollywood Bowl where a man charged and tackled Dave Chapelle on stage and got his ass kicked by at least 10 people.
LAPD and LAFD are now loading him into an ambulance pic.twitter.com/7SXPe9e8az
— Brianna Sacks (@bri_sacks) May 4, 2022
Chappelle continued the showing even joking that the attacker was a trans man.
— DoZay (@DoZay1) May 4, 2022
Chris Rock, who was also in attendance and had performed a set earlier, jokingly asked, “Was that Will Smith?”
“Was that Will Smith?”: Moments after Dave Chappelle was attacked onstage during a performance in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Chris Rock joined Chappelle at the mic for a joke of his own. Rock was slapped by Will Smith at the Oscars less than two months ago. https://t.co/8BO4IlvYf6 pic.twitter.com/WqdrnZCxbM
— CBS News (@CBSNews) May 4, 2022
In response to the attack, Deadline reports Chappelle issued a statement that begins, “Dave Chappelle celebrated four nights of comedy and music, setting record-breaking sales for a comedian at the Hollywood Bowl.
It continued, “This run ties Chappelle with Monty Python for the most headlined shows by any comedian at the Hollywood Bowl, reaching 70k fans of diverse backgrounds during the first Netflix Is A Joke: The Festival, and he refuses to allow last night’s incident to overshadow the magic of this historic moment.”
“As unfortunate and unsettling as the incident was, Chappelle went on with the show. Jamie Foxx and Chris Rock helped calm the crowd with humor before Chappelle introduced the last and featured musical guests for the evening, hip-hop artists yasiin bey and Talib Kweli, a.k.a. Black Star, who performed music from their new album – the first in nearly 24 years – which was released on Luminary,” it read.
“Other special comedic guests last night included Earthquake, Leslie Jones, Jeff Ross, Sebastian, Jon Stewart and Michelle Wolf,” the statement concluded.
A Netflix spokesman also told Deadline, “We care deeply about the safety of creators and we strongly defend the right of stand-up comedians to perform on stage without fear of violence.”
What do you make of Chappelle’s statement? What do you make of this man attacking Chappelle on stage?