Black News, Entertainment, Style and Culture - HuffPost Black Voices
iOS app Android app More
April 26, 2015

White Reservation: The Justification of Breath and Those Who Take It Away

My day ended with news of a Michael Brown memorial tree being chopped down in less than a day of it being planted. Amidst the maelstrom and versions of justice, it's hard to breathe when even the process of photosynthesis is being interrupted.

WATCH: Obama Zingers Fly At The White House Correspondents' Dinner

Obama White House Correspondents Dinner
Pool via Getty Images

Michelle Obama's Dress At The White House Correspondents' Dinner Is Sparkly Perfection

Obama
Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images

Kris Humphries Scrambles After Puzzling Initial Reaction To Bruce Jenner News

Kris
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Cecily Strong Thinks There's Just One Law Enforcement Agency That Would Get In Trouble If A Black Man Were Shot

Cecily Strong
Michael Loccisano via Getty Images

Mom Turns In Son After Recognizing Photos In Brutal Sex Assault

Natasha Mckenna
Chicago Police Department

Newly Elected St. Louis County Mayor Locked Out Of City Hall

Kinloch
Mariah Stewart

Jail Bans Use Of Tasers After Shackled Woman's Controversial Death

Natasha Mckenna
Fairfax County

Hundreds Protest Baltimore Police Over Death Of Freddie Gray

Baltimore
Alex Wong via Getty Images

Isaiah Washington: Hotel Tried to Kick Me Out 'For Being An Uppity Negro'

Isaiah Washington
Star Max/IPx

Attorney: Abuse Is A 'Euphemism,' Kalief Browder Was 'Tortured'

Kalief Browder
The New Yorker

Oprah Winfrey On The Only Prayer You'll Ever Need

Oprah
Stanford / YouTube

Tina Knowles' Wedding Photo Is Perfection (And Blue Ivy Is A Dancing Queen)

Beyonce
XPOSURE

Police Union Chief Defends Calling Baltimore Protesters A 'Lynch Mob'

Freddie Gray
Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

Video Shows Deputy Shoot Unarmed Black Man 4 Times In 2013 Incident

Unarmedshot
WPTV

How the War on Drugs Contributes to the '1.5 Million Missing Black Men'

Michael Brown's Family To File Civil Suit Against Ferguson For Wrongful Death

Michael Brown Family Holds Picture
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Cops Who Killed Mentally Ill Man Carrying Screwdriver Cleared

Screwdriver
Sky News

2 Arrested As Protestors And Police Clash In Baltimore

Cops
AP

Senate Makes History By Confirming Loretta Lynch As U.S. Attorney General

Loretta Lynch
SAUL LOEB via Getty Images

Pennsylvania Lawmaker Wants To Make It Illegal To Taunt A Police Officer

Police Protesters New York City
Andrew Burton via Getty Images

Rights Group To Probe Freddie Gray's Death, Cites No Confidence In Police

Freddie Gray
Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Toni Morrison On The Conversation We Need To Be Having About Race

Toni Morrison
FRANCK FIFE via Getty Images

New Video Shows NYC Teen's 3 Years Of Hell In Rikers Island Jail

Kalief Browder
The New Yorker

Michael Eric Dyson Deems His Public Critique Of Cornel West 'Vital And Necessary'

Michael Eric Dyson
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Chris Rock: ‘Why Don't Black People Like Baseball Anymore?'

Chris Rock
You Tube

'Justice For Freddie': Hundreds Protest Death Of Man After Arrest By Police

Freddie Gray
Drew Angerer via Getty Images

Texas Cop Knocks Allegedly Drunk Woman Out In Front Of Her Daughter

Police Force
KVUE

CNN's Don Lemon To Bill Bratton: 'Do You Think That People Of Color Are Targeted By Police?'

Don Lemon
CNN

BET To Enter Sports Arena With New Partnership

Andre Ward
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Why So Many People Don't Intervene When It Comes To Sexual Assault

Woman Sad People
shutterstock

New Allegations Surface Against Reserve Deputy Who Fatally Shot Black Man

Robert Bates Tulsa
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Cops Resign After Their Town Elects First Black Female Mayor

Parma Mo
KFVS

Police Chief Resigns After Officer Charged In Traffic Stop Beating

William Melendez
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Report: Brittney Griner Arrested On Assault Charges

Mugshot
Maricopa County Sheriff's Office
Global Black Voices
 

Anti-Immigrant Violence Spreads In South Africa

Johannesburg
MUJAHID SAFODIEN via Getty Images

Little Girl Can't Believe Michelle Obama Is 51

Flotus
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Innocent Teen Shot In Face By Oakland Police Reaches Settlement

Raynor
KPIX

How Raising The Minimum Wage To $15 Changed These Workers' Lives

Masterpark
Working Washington

FOLLOW HUFFPOST

    1. HuffPost
    2. Black Voices
    1. HuffPost
    2. Black Voices
    1. HuffPost
    2. Black Voices
    3. View all RSS feeds

'Bye Felicia' Actress Talks 20-Year Anniversary Of 'Friday'

Angela Means Kaaya
Courtesy of Angela Means Kaaya

Barbie Made An Ava DuVernay Doll That's Not For Sale, But Should Be

Ava Duvernay
Astrid Stawiarz via Getty Images

Russell Wilson Dances With His Grandma, The Perfect Date For White House Correspondents' Dinner

Russell
Facebook

Rapper Scarface Opens Up About His Battle With Depression

Brad Scarface Jordan
HuffPost Live

The Shaggy Rap Battle To End All Shaggy Rap Battles

Shaggy
NBC

9 Ways To Wear A Silk Scarf Like A Boss, As Told Through GIFs

Silk Scarf
Tiara Chiaramonte

Mike Tyson Brings His Fear Of Flatulence To 'Lip Sync Battle'

Tyson
Spike TV

Stephen Curry Just Hit The Most Epic Shot Of His Career

Vine
Vine

LeBron James Commends Evan Turner For Even Trying To Dunk On Him

Vine
Vine

30 Natural Hair Haircuts For Any Length And Texture

Natural Hair Haircuts
tom.boy/jfashiongirl87donedo

NBA Player Wrote and Recorded A Playoffs Rap Song

Iman Shumpert
ASSOCIATED PRESS

This Is What A Truly Diverse Plus-Size Campaign Looks Like

Empower All Bodies
Jes Baker

College Athletes Are Burned Out And In Need Of Sleep: Internal Survey

Pac 12
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Beyoncé And Jay Z's Rumored Joint Album Reportedly To Premiere On Tidal

Beyonce Jay Z
Kevin Mazur/VF15 via Getty Images

Holy Crap, Did Rajon Rondo's Mavs Career End Badly Or What?

Rajon Rondo
ASSOCIATED PRESS

24 Struggles Of Online Dating That Are All Too Real

Online Dating
Getty/HuffPost

Five Natural Hairstyle Ideas For Busy Moms

Pompadour Natural Hair
Tribe Called Curl

Dalai Lama, Archbishop Tutu Join Forces For Book On Joy

Dalai Lama Tutu
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Watch 102-Year-Old Former Star See Footage Of Her Young Self Dancing For The First Time

Alice Barker
Tenfresh

Jameis Winston Now Says He Got Those Crab Legs For Free From Store Worker

Jameis Winston
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Waka Flocka Flame: Jay Z Isn't On My Album Because I 'Don't Deserve' It

Waka Flocka Flame
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Watch Kanye West Perform At The Time 100 Gala

470593436
Kevin Mazur via Getty Images

This Beanie Is A Stylish Solution To A Common Hair Care Problem

Slaps Cap
SLAPS

The NBA Is Going To Play Its First Game In Africa This Summer

Nbaafrica
twitter

Bobbi Kristina Brown Is Off Life Support, According To Family

Bobbi Kristina
Shareif Ziyadat via Getty Images

Director Nelson George Talks Working With Misty Copeland On 'A Ballerinas Tale'

Nelson George
Star Max/IPx

9 Times P!nk Proved That Every Woman Should Be Able To Define Herself

Sexy
AP

Little Girl Dances To Taylor Swift With Her Pet Pig And All Is Right With The World

Libby And Pearl
YouTube

Rihanna Doesn't 'Give A D-ck' About Privacy Anymore

V Magazine
V Magazine

These Are The States With The Most Divorced Residents

Us Map
Stephen Marks via Getty Images

Tweet


A direct question about his "formula" seems to catch Perry a little off guard. Eleven movies released in six years and grossing nearly $500 million, combined, at the North American box office is something no other director -- black or white -- has accomplished.

"The formula?," he pondered. "I never thought much about the formula as much as I'm a workaholic. I like to work. I like to be busy. I like to keep moving and as long as I'm giving people what they want, then I'm in a good position. And i think that's what makes it work. There's a huge audience that I've built long before I ever did a movie who are waiting for the next thing, so that's pretty exciting to me."And a cottage industry he has become; From clever celebrity stunt casting in the films, to the sold-out, national tours of his stage plays, and the two top-rated TV sitcoms, Perry rules the roost in a niche he literally carved out for himself.

"I noticed it on the road," he revealed. "There were thousands and thousands of people packing theaters to see the live shows. And it was sold out everywhere and I was trying to find a way to reach more people. So I thought film is the way to go. Because what people want, they want positivity, they want to be uplifted and they want to be encouraged. No matter what color you are, you want to laugh a little to help get through your days. So I think that's what's happening here. And I think that's what Madea does so well."

Tyler Perry talks Madea

Of the near dozen movies Perry has produced, the pistol-packing, pot smoking, bible verse-butchering, plus-sized senior citizen stars in and steals the show in six of them.

To date, even with many mainstream movie critics panning them, flicks such as 'Madea Goes To Jail,' 'Madea's Family Reunion' and 'I Can Do Bad All By Myself,' has raked in unpredicted millions.

In the beginning of it all, Perry said people kept referring to him as his alter ego, but once he started putting his name out there more, people got it.

"I was having a battle with her in the beginning, but we're straight."

And why does he think Madea is such a force of nature?

"Everybody, I don't care who you are, somebody knows or had a grandmother like that -- who will set you straight, hit you on the backside when you were doing something wrong.

"And that's what people can relate to because she's missed, she's not around anymore," he continued.

Madea's Big Happy Family posterIn the new film, Madea jumps into action when her niece Shirley, played by veteran actress Loretta Devine, seeks to reunite and reconcile her three adult children after getting bad news about her health. Her children -- played by Bow Wow, Shannon Kane and Natalie Dessell -- are are having many family issues of their own. The flick also stars Cassi David, David Mann, Tamela Mann, Lauren London, Teyana Taylor, Rodney Perry and Isaiah Mustafa.

"It's a different kind of storytelling," Perry explained. "I mean this is about family. The other stories that I've told is about relationships ... this is about family coming together, and finding out what's wrong, why can't [they] sit down, why can't [they]love one another. So it's a good, fun, inspirational movie."

With all he's amassed over the past five years, it can be easy to lose sense of self. Not for Perry, who when asked about his sense of self, said "just understanding at 41, there is a God."

"There is no way this could be happening without it," he continued. "And knowing that that kind of expression, that kind of love, that kind of faith dwells inside of me and makes the man I am. And as long as I stay true to that, that is who I am."

'Madea's Big Happy Family' is in theaters now.





Tagged as: box office, lionsgate, Madea, Madeas Big Happy Family, Tyler Perry
Email This

Comments: (12)

Add a comment

Page 1 of 2
More on Black Voices

Follow Us

Most Commented Articles

Daily Drama

The Best Clips From TV's Hottest Shows


More Daily Drama >>

Bossip

feed

The Urban Daily

feed
Around the Web