‘It’s Not About Making Money’: Tyler Perry Responds to Claims That He Exploits Black Women’s Pain in His Films

Written by on 01/21/2020

“When gentle, law-abiding Grace confesses to killing her new husband, her skeptical young lawyer sets out to uncover the truth.”

That’s the way Netflix describes the new Tyler Perry movie “A Fall from Grace,” which premiered on the streaming site Jan. 17.

Related: A Few Facts About Tyler Perry’s New Film Studio That May Get You Choked Up

Tyler Perry responded to the criticism that he exploits black women’s pain for money. (Photo: Bennett Raglin/Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

While it’s safe to say there were legions of people excited to see the new film when it was first announced, others expressed frustration and said Perry often exploits black women’s pain in his stories, then cashes in at the box office.

It’s a criticism that Perry responded to during a chat with the New York Post, and he said there’s an underlying message in many of the pieces he writes. He also explained that watching his mother being abused by his father has a tremendous effect on his work.

“I’m always trying to send a message that you don’t have to deal with this s–-t,” said Perry.

He then shot down the idea that he exploits black women’s pain for financial gain, and he also seemed to be a little frustrated by the accusation.

“It’s not about making money off of a woman’s pain, it is about telling a story,” said the 50-year-old entertainment mogul. “And I wish that people, especially black women, would get off the fact of saying, ‘Oh, he’s making money off of black women.’ ”

This is the second time that Perry has responded to criticism in recent weeks.

Earlier this month, after the New Orleans native revealed that he’s the only one who writes his scripts, people suggested that he add more writers to improve the quality.

Perry explained why he’s now a one-man-show, during an interview with Level, and it has to do with a bad experience he had.

“I had a bunch of writers who were nonunion, and I was unhappy with every single script they wrote,” he explained. “They were not speaking to the voice. They just didn’t get it. There was a black woman lawyer I was negotiating with to get WGA [Writers Guild of America] writers on my show. I told her, ‘I can’t afford to pay those rates that every other studio pays. I need to structure differently.’”

“It looked like the deal was going to go through so I fired the four writers and prepared to hire new writers through the WGA,” Perry continued. “Now we’re a WGA show and I’m paying WGA rates. Scripts they’re turning in? Ratings are going down.”

“So now I have to go in and give notes on how to rewrite them,” Perry explained. “And if I still don’t like it, I have to pay them again for another rewrite.”

He went on to say that he writes “authentically” and his “shows do well.”

“A Fall from Grace” stars Crystal Fox, Phylicia Rashad and Cicely Tyson.

Source: Atlanta Black Star


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