Apr 20, 2011

Y'all have gotten on Tyler Perry's last good nerve with all this hateration...LOL!!! After being Fed up with the constant criticism he's received over the years especially at the hands of acclaimed director Spike Lee, Perry finally decided to lash out. It was only a matter of time. I'm actually happy to see him defending himself; although, I already know people are going to have something to say about the way in which he defended himself. Hey, you can only push a person so far before they decided to fight back. I respect both Spike Lee and Tyler Perry. I wish, instead of tearing each other down, that they could actually work together. But I guess that's just wishful thinking because I really don't know where you go after you tell a person to go 'Straight to hell.'

Tyler Perry, director, writer and star of Madea's Big Happy Family and all of the films in the popular Madea series, offered some harsh words to his critics in the entertainment industry, in particular filmmaker Spike Lee. "I'm so sick of hearing about damn Spike Lee," Perry said during a press conference Tuesday in Beverly Hills, Calif. "Spike can go straight to hell! You can print that. I am sick of him talking about me, I am sick of him saying, 'this is a coon, this is a buffoon.' I am sick of him talking about black people going to see movies. This is what he said: 'you vote by what you see,' as if black people don't know what they want to see."

"I am sick of him - he talked about Whoopi, he talked about Oprah, he talked about me, he talked about Clint Eastwood. Spike needs to shut the hell up!"

Perry's latest film Madea's Big Happy Family opens Friday in theaters nationwide. The filmmaker is one of the most successful in Hollywood, thanks to a string of hits that engaged African-American and churchgoing audiences like few others have been able to. Discussing an email he sent out recently to fans via his website, Perry said that he tries not to dwell on negativity, but sometimes gets frustrated about the criticism he receives from within his own community. "I was writing about just people and how hard people work to discourage people from seeing my work," he said. "I don't even understand it [but] this is where the whole Spike Lee [comment] comes from - the negativity, this is Stepin Fetchit, this is coonery, this is buffoonery, and they try to get people to get on this bandwagon with them, to get this mob mentality to come against what I'm doing."

The filmmaker admitted he can't understand why so much of the criticism of his films comes from his fellow African-Americans, when he doesn't see similar criticisms of other groups coming from their communities. "I've never seen Jewish people attack Seinfeld and say "this is a stereotype," I've never seen Italian people attack The Sopranos, I've never seen Jewish people complaining about Mrs. Doubtfire or Dustin Hoffman in Tootsie. I never saw it. It's always black people, and this is something that I cannot undo. Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois went through the exact same thing; Langston Hughes said that Zora Neale Hurston, the woman who wrote Their Eyes Were Watching God, was a new version of the 'darkie' because she spoke in a southern dialect and a Southern tone. And I'm sick of it from us; we don't have to worry about anybody else trying to destroy us and take shots because we do it to ourselves."

Perry also said that he feels like many of the criticisms that his work doesn't reach other audiences or ethnic groups is simply unfounded. "So me being frustrated with it, and then they go on to say that people of other ethnic groups or white people don't go see my movies, and that's all a lie. I'm standing on stage looking at thousands of people, thousands of faces, with every race represented, and I'm tired of it. I'm tired of just laying down, tired of just being nice and letting them say whatever they want to say however they want to say it without people knowing what the intent really is."

Now, I will disagree with him on the fact that Italians never complained about 'The Sopranos' because they did just like they complained about 'The Jersey Shore'. It's not so easy to compare us (African Americans) to other groups in this country because historically no other group has received the type of treatment that we have in this country. Jewish groups don't complain about Seinfeld because they have enough positive images on television that they don't have to complain about what he does or does not do. African Americans on the other hand do not have that type of luxury when it comes to representation in the media and that is why we are so sensitive when it comes to our image.

We have to be sensitive to the ways in which we are portrayed because historically we all know what happens when we stop playing attention.


  1. Everything does not have to be so serious, some movies are for "Entertainment Purposes Only" and as for Tyler Perry movies with Madea,that's what it is. Black Folks need to calm down and go see it if you want and if you don't want to see it then don't go. I'm just glad Tyler is putting Black Actors and Actresses to work, cause lord knows hollywood is'nt.

  2. I understand and agree where some of the criticism is coming from and why we can't be compared to other groups.
    All black people ever seem to get is coonery, shucking and jiving a la Perry's films, or dysfunction, gloom and doom a la Precious (again a project Perry was involved in). There is a never a balance. We are never portrayed as loving, normal folks just going about our business. And we are never portrayed in creative thought-provoking romances, thrillers or dramas. It's always just mindless sex, violence and comedy.