Dave Chappelle is one of the cover subjects for GQ‘s “Men of the Year” issue. In the interview, he gets into questions that have been on our brains for awhile, like what was really behind him going to Africa after he quit his popular Comedy Central sketch series.
Footballer Michael Sam also joins Chappelle, Chris Pratt and Shailene Woodley in the “Men of the Year” issue. Check it out when it hits stands on November 25.
Until then, check out some of Chappelle’s answers to our biggest questions:
On why he did 10 shows at Radio City Music Hall:
I have a show-business bucket list. There’s just certain things that every entertainer always dreamed of doing. When I was 19, I used to walk up Sixth Avenue and look at the marquee of Radio City. I’d see the lines outside. I’d be like, “Man, I just want to… Radio City!” So then, last year, when I started going on the road, it was just because I wanted to be on the road, at first. There’s something cathartic about touring—it feels good to just engage people that way. But then, as it was progressing, I was like, “Well, this should all go somewhere. Where am I going with this?” It just so happened the venue was open during the same time frame I was willing to play. The venue opened up for an astounding ten days. And I said, “Well, can we do all ten? You know, can I even do that business? I haven’t played New York in so long.” I didn’t want to pass up on the opportunity.
On what he really thinks about Tyler Perry:
He’s a pretty prolific dude. What he was able to accomplish is very, very impressive. There’s no way you could look at it and not be impressed. And what I like about what he did initially with those Madea movies is that it was an after-church crowd. Like, he was the first guy I saw in mainstream media that was speaking directly to that audience. I like that about him.
On if he is truly happy:
You know, I have angst in my life, but I’m like anybody. We all have angst in our lives that we pick up and fidget with and then we put down and look at some other things that make us feel good or enjoy our lives. Today I’m happy, yeah. Some days I am not happy, but I’m not necessarily sad. What I’m trying to say is that if anything like Robin Williams ever happened to me, suspect foul play.
The biggest misconception about him leaving “Chappelle’s Show:”
Here’s one funny thing: People are always like, “I heard you moved to Africa.” And in reality I was only there for about two weeks. I was on “vacation.” I don’t want to be too specific, but it wasn’t even like I necessarily left. I wasn’t like, “I’m leaving and I’m never coming back.” It wasn’t necessarily that kind of thing. But then there was a sequence of events…and ten years later, here we are.
On wanting to barbecue around the country with random people:
Yeah, and bring your own meat. I just like seeing people, man. I just like meeting people. I like finding out new walks of life and new ideas. Sometimes I just like not doing sh-t and not being sh-t. Like, it doesn’t all have to be so serious with me. I can revert back to my adolescence in an instant. I get on those video games.
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