ALEX EDELMAN/AFP via Getty; Jeremy Chan/Getty Dave Chappelle and Louis C.K.
Last week, artist Mathieu Bitton posted photos on Instagram from a series of comedy shows in Yellow Springs, Ohio, headlined by Chappelle, 46, which showed C.K., 52, smiling onstage for photo-ops with celebrity guests like Sarah Silverman, Tiffany Haddish, Common and Michelle Wolf. The series is billed as Dave Chappelle & Friends - An Intimate Socially Distanced Affair.
DJ Trauma, who also appeared in the pictures, shared one of the same photos on his own Instagram, writing with it, "#chappellesummercamp #louisck came thru and rocked with us!!!"
"Louis C.K. was a very good friend of mine before he died in that terrible masturbation accident… He didn’t do anything you can call the police for," said Chappelle in the special. "I dare you to try. ... They ruined this n—’s life, and now he’s coming back playing comedy clubs and they’re acting like if he’s able to do that that’s going to hurt women. What the f— is your agenda, ladies?"
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In a November 2017 report from The New York Times, five women accused C.K. of sexual misconduct. Comedians Dana Min Goodman and Julia Wolov alleged that while with C.K. in his hotel room after their show at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in 2002, he “proceeded to take all of his clothes off, and get completely naked, and started masturbating.”
Comedian Rebecca Corry alleged that C.K. “asked if we could go to my dressing room so he could masturbate in front of me” while filming a TV pilot in 2005, and writer Abby Schachner alleged she heard him masturbating through the phone during a 2003 call. A fifth, anonymous woman alleged that while working on The Chris Rock Show in the late 1990s, C.K. masturbated while she sat with him in his office.
In a lengthy statement shortly after the report, C.K. admitted that the allegations were true. "These stories are true. At the time, I said to myself that what I did was okay because I never showed a woman my dick without asking first, which is also true. But what I learned later in life, too late, is that when you have power over another person, asking them to look at your dick isn’t a question. It’s a predicament for them," he said at the time.
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"The power I had over these women is that they admired me. And I wielded that power irresponsibly. I have been remorseful of my actions. And I’ve tried to learn from them. And run from them," added C.K. "Now I’m aware of the extent of the impact of my actions."
"... There is nothing about this that I forgive myself for. And I have to reconcile it with who I am. Which is nothing compared to the task I left them with," he said. "... I have spent my long and lucky career talking and saying anything I want. I will now step back and take a long time to listen."
In October 2018, Silverman, 49, spoke out about her close friendship with C.K., revealing to Howard Stern at the time that she had previously allowed him to masturbate in front of her.
Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Louis C.K.
“I love him, he’s my brother. I’ve known him since I was 19,” she explained at the time. “It’s so hard to talk about. It’s all very black-and-white until it comes to your front door and the bad guy is someone you love. Listen, what he did was wrong. I would not say it was analogous to the serial rapist Bill Cosby, I would not say it’s even close to Harvey Weinstein. … I’m not saying that’s okay. Because once he got famous, even just in the comedy community, that changes everything and it makes it not okay.”
She later added: “I’m not saying what he did was okay. I’m just saying, at a certain point, when he became an influential — not even famous — but influential in the world of comedy, it changes. He felt like he was the same person, but the dynamic was different, and it was not okay.”