Dave Chappelle is headed to Netflix.
The stand-up comic has set three new stand-up comedy specials at the streaming giant, it was announced Monday.
Chappelle and director Stan Lathan will produce an original stand-up comedy special exclusively for Netflix, with its premiere date to be announced. The two other never-before-seen specials hail directly from Chappelle’s personal comedy vault. Directed by Lathan and filmed at Austin City Limits and the Hollywood Palladium, the specials mark the comedian’s first concert specials in 12 years and are slated to be released simultaneously in 2017.
“Dave Chappelle is a legendary voice in comedy — searing, vital, and now more than ever, essential,” Lisa Nishimura, Netflix VP, original docuementary and comedy, said. “Dave’s three new specials promise to be some of the most anticipated events in comedy, and we are honored he will mark his global return on Netflix.”
The news comes fresh off Chappelle’s SNL hosting debut, which nabbed the show its best rating in three years. The specials will also mark Chappelle’s first major TV project since he surprisingly and suddenly stepped away from his Comedy Central sketch series Chappelle’s Show in 2005 arguably at the height of the show’s popularity. The comedian subsequently spent several years out of the public eye, but has slowly returned to the mainstream. He performed 10 sold-out shows at Radio City Music Hall in 2014, and also appeared in a small roll in Spike Lee’s film Chi-Raq last year. He has continued to perform stand-up across the country, performing over 500 shows in the past three years.
For Netflix, the deal comes not long after the streaming giant landed two new stand-up specials from Chris Rock as part of a stunning $40 million deal. As it ramps up originals, the streamer has become a major player in the stand-up space, competiting against Comedy Central and HBO, among other platforms. Earlier this year, the streamer was able to land Dana Carvey’s first stand-up special in 20 years. In September, Patton Oswalt won an Emmy for his Netflix stand-up special, Talking for Clapping.
“For us, it’s about having enough of a global audience and anticipated engagement that we can get behind all of these projects,” Nishimura told THR earlier this month when discussing Rock’s highly anticipated specials.