A Conversation with Tyler Perry
With millions of fans worldwide, Tyler Perry has built an entertainment empire based on a unique blend of spiritual hope and down-home humor that continues to shape his inspiring life story and extraordinary body of work. Whether it’s about the story of the beloved Madea and the creation of his amazingly successful films and television shows to his activism on behalf of others, a conversation with Tyler Perry is one that touches and inspires.
Tyler Perry is one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People of 2020
Media mogul TYLER PERRY was honored by TIME as one of the Most Influential People of 2020. In her essay explaining why he is a visionary trailblazer, Oprah Winfrey writes:
Last fall, Tyler made history, opening the largest privately owned motion-picture studio in the U.S., set on 330 acres. The former Confederate Army base is now a state-of-the-art production facility with 12 soundstages—each named after an iconic African-American figure. On Sept. 20, he made history again when he received the prestigious Governors Award at the Emmys.
Though he now sits atop a growing pinnacle of successes, he’s always trying to help others. Whether addressing food insecurity and homelessness in his community, helping the families of George Floyd, Rayshard Brooks and Secoriea Turner, or donating millions, his giving always comes from a personal place.
In a recent essay on his hopes for the future of our country, he wrote he will explain to his son “that progress is made in small steps and even if you get exhausted to fight on, because there are always signs of daybreak before the morning comes.”
Tyler Perry is an established American actor, director, screenwriter, producer, playwright, and author. Born into poverty and raised in a household scarred by abuse, Tyler fought from a young age to find the strength, faith and perseverance that would later form the foundations of his work. In conversation, Perry touches upon all of his experiences, ranging from his work in film and television to his activism on behalf of others and the journey it took for him to get where he is today.
Tyler started his career writing plays, many of which later became the inspiration for his film projects and included the introduction of the now-legendary Madea character, played by Tyler himself. Tyler’s first feature film, Diary of a Mad Black Woman, debuted at number one nationwide in 2005. His ensuing films including Madea's Family Reunion, Daddy's Little Girls, Why Did I Get Married?, Meet The Browns, The Family That Preys, I Can Do Bad All by Myself, Why Did I Get Married Too?, For Colored Girls, Madea's Big, Happy Family, Good Deeds, Madea's Witness Protection, The Single Mom’s Club, Boo! and Boo! 2: A Madea Halloween, and A Madea Family Funeral have all been met with massive commercial success, delighting audiences across America and around the world. He also helped release the Academy Award-nominated Precious, garnered rave reviews for his role opposite Ben Affleck in David Fincher’s Gone Girl, and most recently portrayed Colin Powell in Adam McKay’s Academy Award-winning film Vice. No stranger to the smaller screen, Perry debuted the TBS series House of Payne in 2007, which broke cable rating records, and later launched the equally successful Meet the Browns on the same network. In late 2012, Perry partnered with Oprah Winfrey to bring scripted programming to her cable network, OWN, with For Better or Worse, Love Thy Neighbor, If Loving You is Wrong, The Paynes, and The Haves and The Have Nots. In July 2017, Perry continued to grow his empire by announcing a mega multiyear content partnership with Viacom covering TV, film, and short form video projects. In addition to currently working on his television series, in Fall 2017, Tyler released a book, Higher is Waiting, and the feature film sequel to his box office hit Boo! A Madea Halloween, which took top spot at the bokx office on opening weekend. Perry released two more films with Lionsgate in 2018 – Acrimony starring Taraji P. Henson and A Madea Family Funeral, which brought his popular character back to the big screen for her final time. The movie was a smash at the box office, raking in over $74 million.
In October 2019, Perry celebrated the historical official opening of Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, making him the first African American man to ever be at the helm of a major studio. Later that same month, Perry premiered his first shows for BET, The Oval and Sistas to impressive ratings and over 2 million viewers. Perry is currently in production for his multiple television series at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta.