An unnamed Netflix employee has been terminated after releasing financial details relating to the company’s budget for several project, including Dave Chappelle‘s latest special.
The firing came just days after a Bloomberg article revealed that Chappelle received an additional $500,000 for The Closer than he had for his 2019 special, Sticks & Stones. The amount Netflix spent on the most recent special – $24.1 million – is equivalent to what they spent on all nine episode of the hit Korean thriller Squid Game, according to Bloomberg.
Netflix felt so strongly about Chappelle’s potential success that they provided him with the budget increase despite the fact that Sticks & Stones had an impact value of $19.4 million, considerably less than the $23.6 million spent on the special.
Having pulled in 10 million viewers in just its first week of release, it is possible that The Closer‘s impact value – not to be confused with the actual earnings generated by the release – may exceed that.
On Saturday, Netflix confirmed to CNN that they had been able to determine which employee had accessed the information leaked to Bloomberg, as only one person had accessed the “confidential, commercially sensitive” details.
“We understand this employee may have been motivated by disappointment and hurt with Netflix,” said a company spokesperson, “but maintaining a culture of trust and transparency is core to our company.”
While the employee’s name was not released, it is believe that they were one of the organizers planning an employee walkout scheduled for Oct. 20 and being spearheaded by trans employees.
One of the other organizers, Terra Field, was suspended alongside two other employees earlier this month, after attending a director-level meeting to which they had not been invited. At the time of her suspension, many felt Field was being reprimanded for a series of viral tweets in which she criticized Chappelle. However Netflix quickly issued a statement to the contrary in a statement to The Verge, which had reported the suspension.
“It is absolutely untrue to say that we have suspended any employee for tweeting about this show,” read the statement. “Our employees are encouraged to disagree openly and we support their right to do so.”
Field was reinstated the following day.