Dave Chappelle will be hosting Saturday Night Live this week. Some writers have reportedly decided to boycott the episode due to the comedian’s history of anti-trans remarks.
An unnamed “insider” told Page Six that some writers will not participate in the show, though none of the actors are boycotting.
According to a representative for Chappelle, however, there didn’t appear to be a boycott when the team attended a writers’ meeting.
“The room was full of writers. They all pitched ideas, and they seemed very excited about it…. Dave is looking to have some fun.”
It has not been confirmed who is boycotting or if anyone has gone through with it. Once producers announced Chappelle’s role as host, trans writer Celeste Yim posted a stark message to their Instagram story: “I’m trans and nonbinary, and I use they/them pronouns. Transphobia is murder, and it should be condemned.”
This season, SNL also hired its first out nonbinary cast member, Molly Kearney, who has not publicly commented on Chappelle’s participation in the show.
Chappelle’s anti-trans reputation stems from his Netflix special The Closer – in which he announced he is a transgender exclusionary radical feminist (TERF) before launching into a scathing diatribe about transgender women’s genitals.
Amid the outrage, CEO Ted Sarandos said the streaming service would not remove the special because Chappelle was too popular to ditch.
The company also fired a Black, pregnant, transgender employee, B. Pagels-Minor, who was organizing the October 20 walkout in protest of Chappelle, claiming they leaked metrics about the special to the media.
Netflix suspended another trans employee, Terra Field, who had been speaking out against the special and claimed it was because she had attempted to attend a meeting held by directors that she was not supposed to attend. Netflix subsequently reversed the suspension when they admitted that a director had invited Field to the meeting prior, but Field ultimately resigned.
In the meantime, Chappelle has continued to defend himself and complain about being “canceled,” all while continuing to book gigs and denigrate LGBTQ people.
“I said what I said, and boy, I heard what you said,” Chappelle told the audience in a recent live performance he posted. “My God, how could I not? You said you want a safe working environment at Netflix. Well, it seems like I am the only one that can’t go to the office anymore.”
Chappelle also emphasized his refusal to change.
“To the transgender community, I am more than willing to give you an audience,” he said, “but you will not summon me. I am not bending to anybody’s demands.”