Tyler Perry has been honored with a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame!
The entertainment giant was honored Tuesday for his contributions to the film and theater industry and for building a massive entertainment empire, making him the most successful Black filmmaker in history. Joining him at the ceremony was actor Idris Elba (Daddy’s Little Girls) and actress Crystal Fox (The Haves & The Have Nots), NBC Los Angeles reports.
Tyler Perry was born and raised in New Orleans. He wrote his first play in 1992, but didn’t find success until about 6 years later. His breakout star was “Madea,” a tough, religious, gun toting granny played by Perry. It took him 13 years and 13 plays before getting his big break in theater with Diary of a Mad Black Woman in 2005. Perry went on to grow the Madea franchise and eventually ventured into television with his TBS sitcom House of Payne. In 2012, he partnered with Oprah to bring scripted series programming to her OWN network. He has written, directed, produced and starred in his own films, making himself as much of a household name as his characters. He also owns Tyler Perry Studios, the only Hollywood studio owned by an African American with no corporate backing or partners.
Earlier this year, Perry spoke about his journey to where he is now saying, “I came [to Atlanta] with nothing, lived off Sylvan Road, ended up homeless and starving, but I was always praying and believing. I was always keeping the faith, knowing that if I worked hard, did my absolute best, kept my integrity, honored every blessing, and remained grateful through it all that everything would work out. And it has, thank God.”
Perry’s Walk of Fame honor comes just a couple days before the unveiling of the newly remodeled Tyler Perry Studios. The 330-acre facility is bigger than Warner Bros., Paramount and Walt Disney’s Burbank studios combined. It features twelve 10,000 to 38,0000 square foot sound stages named after Black entertainment pioneers such as Oprah Winfrey, Sidney Poitier, and the late, great John Singleton. The studio sits on the grounds of Ft. Mcpherson, a former army base in Atlanta.
The new star honoring the 50-year-old mogul is the 2,675th star on the Walk of Fame since it’s completion in 1961. Perry spoke of the importance of his work, particularly for Black people saying, “I never met a Warner brother. I never met Walt Disney. But to be one person and be a man of color is an accomplishment I feel really proud of. I hope it will set an example for other people of color, in every area but particularly in Hollywood. To direct movies, to get acclaim and win all these awards is great, but there’s something more important than that. What changes everything is ownership.”
While Perry is celebrating his new star and upcoming dedication of the new studio, he is still working. He recently inked a deal with Viacom to produce new comedies and dramas for their networks as well as original content under the company’s new streaming service, BET+. His new shows, The Oval, a White House drama, and Sistas, a series about single Black women navigating the complications of life, are both set to premiere on BET this October.
Congratulations Tyler Perry!! Keep inspiring and motivating us to dream bigger!
Photo Courtesy of Leon Bennett/WireImage