Black News, Entertainment, Style and Culture - HuffPost Black Voices
iOS app Android app More
July 30, 2015

Oscar Grant's Mother Tells Church 'Our Lives Matter'

When I visited Christian Love Baptist Church in Irvington, N.J. on July 19 and heard Johnson speak, six years after her son's death, it wasn't a dramatization of events it was real life. A mother poured her heart out to a congregation, which understood her pain.

We Weep For African Lions. But What About Black Lives?

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

The Public Still Can't See The Eric Garner Grand Jury Records, Court Rules

Athena Image
JEWEL SAMAD via Getty Images

Activists Want To Know Why An ICE Officer Is Back At Work After Fatal Shooting

Athena Image
Facebook

#BlackLivesMatters Co-Founder ‘Mortified' By O'Reilly's 'Anarchistic' Comment

County Removes Confederate Flag, Replaces It With Another Confederate Flag

Walton County Confederate Flag
Michelle Uhlfelder

4 Huge Ways Obama Spoke Up For Women On His Historic Kenya Trip

Athena Image
SAUL LOEB via Getty Images

Boy, 8, Is First Child Ever To Receive Double Hand Transplant

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Black Trans Inmate Ashley Diamond Alleges New Sexual Assault

Athena Image
Getty Images/Vetta

Sandra Bland Memorial In Ottawa Defaced With Racial Slurs

Sandra Bland
Facebook/Black Lives Matter - Ottawa Coalition

Jail Defends Procedures Amid Scrutiny Of Sandra Bland's Death

Athena Image
Pat Sullivan/AP

In Just A Few Days, These Girls Designed Apps To Make Studying More Fun And Fight Bullying

Black Girls Code Hackathon
Twitter: Kimberly Bryant

Black Students In The U.S. Get Criminalized While White Students Get Treatment

Athena Image
Hemera Technologies

New Footage Of Sandra Bland Released

Bland
Courtesy of Bland family, File

This App Could Help Combat Racial Profiling During Traffic Stops

Athena Image
Courtesy of Mbye Njie

There Have Been 132 Pro-Confederate Flag Rallies Since The Charleston Shooting

Athena Image
Credit: Associated Press

Country's Youngest Convicted Killer Gets Released

Athena Image
Malcolm Denemark/Florida Today
Global Black Voices
 

Kenyan Artist Makes Unique Eyewear Out Of Recycled Electronics

Athena Image
Cyrus Kabiru

The Complicated Problem Of Race And Special Education

Athena Image
FREDERICK FLORIN via Getty Images

White House: Criminal Case Against Darren Wilson Closed For Good

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

North Carolina GOP Chair Ties Hillary Clinton To The KKK

Athena Image
Sean Rayford via Getty Images

Rapper Styles P Opens Up About His Daughter's Suicide

Athena Image
Stephen Lovekin via Getty Images

Black 'Harry Potter' Characters Aren't Just Beautiful -- They're Revolutionary

Racebent Hermione
dellbelle39.tumblr.com

Elisabeth Hasselbeck Suggests Sandra Bland Could Have Used Cigarette As A Weapon

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Sheriff Where Sandra Bland Died Says There's No Racism In His County

Athena Image
Pat Sullivan/Associated Press

Ralkina Jones Dies In Jail In Cleveland Suburb

Ralkina Jones Ralkina Jones Dead Ralkina Jones Dea
WOIO

Bobby Brown Speaks Out After Daughter Bobbi Kristina's Death

Athena Image
Getty

Instagram Restricted Sandra Bland Hashtag To Block Hate Speech

Athena Image
Jonathan Gibby via Getty Images

Snoop Dogg Claims Swedish Police Racially-Profiled Him

Athena Image
Duane Prokop via Getty Images

Progressive Group Incorporates #BlackLivesMatter Into Endorsement Process

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Sandra Bland Wasn't The Only Woman Abused By Male Cops In Texas

Athena Image
Jonathan Gibby via Getty Images

Democratic Senate Field Shaping Up To Be Most Diverse Ever

Athena Image
Getty/AP Images

Celebrities Honor Bobbi Kristina Brown On Twitter And Instagram

Celebrities
Frazer Harrison via Getty Images

Jim Crow-Era Folk Artist Captures The Haunting Ways We Envision Death

Untitled Date Unknown 75 X 55 X 45 Unfired Clay Al
Untitled Date unknown 7.5 x 5.5 x 4.5" Unfired clay, aluminum foil, human teeth Photograph by Marie Catalano Courtesy of Thomas E. Scanlin Collection

Autopsy Planned For Bobbi Kristina Brown

Athena Image
Getty

Loretta Lynch: Sandra Bland Case Highlights 'Frustration' With Police

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Obama Jokes About Birth Certificate During Kenya Visit

Obama Kenya
Thomson Reuters

Here's Why We Don't Hear About More Unjustified Police Shootings

Athena Image
Spencer Platt via Getty Images

Black Trooper In Powerful Viral Photo With White Supremacist Reveals What Really Happened

Leroy Smith South Carolina White Supremacist Race
Rob Godfrey/Twitter

Hundreds Mourn Sandra Bland As Questions Remain Over Her Death

Athena Image
Jonathan Gibby via Getty Images

Barbershop Outreach Gets Black Boys Reading

Athena Image
Peter Macdiarmid via Getty Images

FOLLOW HUFFPOST

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

Queen Latifah And Mary J. Blige To Join NBC's 'The Wiz Live!'

Mary J Blige Queen Latifah
AP

Son Of Imprisoned Rapper Mac Phipps Says 'It's A Good Feeling' Dad May Be Home Soon

Mac Phipps
Sheila Phipps

The Weeknd Is Literally On Fire In 'Can't Feel My Face' Music Video

The Weeknd Cant Feel My Face
Apple Music

Jay Pharoah Opens Up About His Painful Battle With Depression

Jay Pharoah
HuffPost Live

Raven-Symoné Was Told What To Eat As A Child Star After 'Getting Fat'

Ravensymone
ABC

How Excusing Tyga And Kylie Jenner's Relationship Validates The Sexualization of Young Girls

Athena Image
Mike Windle via Getty Images

New 'Daily Show' Host Trevor Noah: 'I'm A Connoisseur Of Racism'

Trevor Noah
Comedy Central

'Empire' Costars Grace Gealey And Trai Byers Engaged

Ap
Grace Gealey Trai Byers Engaged

New York Summer Camp Gives Homeless Children A Chance To Just Be Kids

Athena Image
Homes for the Homeless

What You Need To Know About 'Independence Day: Resurgence'

Independence Day
20th Century Fox

Jaden Smith Walks Around Italy With A Giant Mug In New 'Scarface' Video

Jaden Smith Scarface
490tx

7 More Documentaries To Stream On Netflix

Nina Simone
Radical Media

Tyrese Gibson Calls Out 'White' Radio Stations For Being Racist

Celebrities
Jemal Countess via Getty Images

Danielle Brooks Shows Off Body Confidence With Gym Selfie

Danielle Brooks Body Confidence
Instagram

Rihanna Was Reportedly Blocked From Playing A Free Concert

Athena Image
Dimitrios Kambouris via Getty Images

Police Officer Shares Meal With Homeless Man To Make Him Feel like 'Just Another Person'

Police Officer Ocala Police Department
TiAnna S. Greene/Facebook

100 Queer Characters Of Color Who Show Why Media Should Diversify

Athena Image
Katy Winn/Invision/AP

Coco And Ice T Are Expecting Their First Child Together

Athena Image
Ilya S. Savenok via Getty Images

Dionne Warwick Remembers Bobbi Kristina Brown

Athena Image
Larry Busacca via Getty Images

The Moment Charlamagne Tha God Stopped Defending Bill Cosby

Charlamagne Tha God Huffpost Live Charlamagne Tha
HuffPost Live

Patriarch Of Musical Jackson Family Suffers A Stroke

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

These Photos Prove Iman Is More Fierce And Flawless Than Ever!

Iman
Iman/Instagram

Paul Mooney On Cosby's Legacy: He Got His 'N****r Wake-up Call'

Paul Mooney
Courtesy of Jill Newman Productions

‘Empire’ Star Derek Luke Slams Followers For Criticizing Wife's Race

Actpr Tavern On The Green National Board Of Review
Matthew Peyton via Getty Images

'Key & Peele' To End After Current Season

Athena Image
Frazer Harrison via Getty Images

Charlamagne Tha God Weighs In On The Accusations Against Drake

Athena Image
Rich Fury/Invision/AP

50 Cent Ordered To Pay Additional $2 Million In Sex Tape Case

Athena Image
Andrew H. Walker via Getty Images

Nicki Minaj And Taylor Swift's Drama Is Officially 'Over'

Athena Image
Larry Busacca via Getty Images

Being An Athlete Isn't Just About Playing Sports, And It Shouldn't Be

Athena Image
ASSOCIATED PRESS

7 South African Fashion Brands That Will Make You Swoon

Thula Sindi
Thula Sindi

'It Takes Us' Photo Project Shows Survivors Of Gun Violence

Athena Image
Joe Quint

The Problem With Asking Football Players To Act Like White Guys

Athena Image
George Rose via Getty Images

Naomi Campbell Will Face-Off With Lady Gaga In 'American Horror Story: Hotel'

Athena Image
Jemal Countess via Getty Images

J. Cole Joins Janet Jackson In New Video For 'No Sleeep'

Janet Jackson J Cole No Sleeep
YouTube

Kandi Burruss Is Pregnant, Expecting Child With Husband Todd Tucker

Ama
Jason Merritt 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