Last Saturday, Tyler Perry made history when he became the first African-American to open his own studio. Now, what makes this historic is the number of movies and television shows he's created, written, produced, and even starred in that contributed to this historic, inspirational feat. It's inspirational to all of us in the creative field that with hard work and perseverance, anything is possible.
In conversations, I've had with some people and they'll argue that black folks have their own studios all the time. That's both true and false. Yes, we file the paperwork to get our own companies like Tyler did but this is his first large brick and mortar company. Historically, it's an old property occupied by Confederate slaves. Good job Tyler.
In addition to having ownership of all his movies, Tyler also used his studio for other projects like Black Panther and The Walking Dead. With over 40 movies and 10 TV shows all in which Tyler has control of, he's taken over the medium quite well. Employing such diverse acting talent as Taraji P. Henson, Cicely Tyson, Jon Schneider, Kathy Bates, Alfre Woodard, Al Franken, John Amos, Bow Wow, Tom Arnold and more, Tyler Perry has created the beginnings of an entertainment dynasty.
However, I have been hearing rumblings of hate about his accomplishments but Tyler has always been a target. Many of us because of his wearing a dress leading to many believing he's sold out as many black men have. That's another blog for another day because I can go off on a tangent but I won't. Medea is a combination of his mom and his aunt whom he idolized as a child and raised him.
First off, how many of you don't have a gangster mother or aunt who's willing to "go there" when needed. I know personally I have a mother and grandmother who would. In fact, I have a grandmother with a gun who actually would use it if she had to. It went from plays to movies to TV. That's the funny side of the story. The true version speaks of a depressed man who went homeless trying to get his first play produced. With very little help, this man changed the game on plays. Then it came on from there. Here comes the hate.
We tend to make comparisons to other people when we talk about the successes of our own black people and it's us who make the comparisons. We are not allowed to put down another individual's dream because you don't want someone to put down your dreams still in progress. Despite all of the Jay-Zs and Venus & Serenas out there, there are many of us you don't even know about who are success stories. We need to be happy for every achievement because when we waste our time being upset out their success, we're not taking the time out to work on ours.
One thing we tend to do is we bring up another person out of nowhere to create another scenario out of nowhere. Someone brought up a valid point about Tim Reid and his wife having their own studio as well where they produced TV shows and movies. However, Tyler bought his studio free and clear and had a bigger presence in Hollywood before he bought his studio. He paid his dues like the Reids. Why create a rivalry when there isn't any?
Speaking of rivalries, how many of you took sides when Director Spike Lee had an issue with Tyler Perry. Both made very different movies and Lee had an issue with Tyler Perry and the way he did his movies. Leading up to this opening, the two squashed their beef because the two realized they both make very different, very successful movies.
One thing we as a people need to stop doing is breaking down and analyzing another's success. Unless the success came from another's pain or by scamming others, then we shouldn't be putting another person's success down.