04:55 PM EDT 08/21/2015
Originally posted 01/13/2011 07:55AM
Will Smith and Jada Pinckett Smith are proud parents this morning.
Their two precocious children – Jaden, 12, and Willow, 10 – both earned NAACP Image Awards nominations on Wednesday. Jaden is up for outstanding actor in a motion picture for The Karate Kid, while Willow will compete for best new artist as well as outstanding music video for "Whip My Hair."
Tyler Perry was recognized in a big way, with his film and TV productions earning a total of 19 nominations. Two of his features, For Colored Girls and Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married Too?, are up for best film.
Originally posted 12/26/2010 02:30PM
Tyler Perry is fighting fire with compassion.
The movie mogul, 41, is reaching out to an 88-year-old great-grandmother of seven, who lost everything when her house in Coweta County – just southwest of Atlanta – burned to the ground, reports Atlanta's WSB-TV.
The Atlanta-based filmmaker pledged to rent a house for Rosa Lee Ransby and her 4-year-old great-granddaughter for one year. Perry will also pay the utility bills, buy her furniture and build her a new home on the burned property.
Originally posted 10/21/2010 01:35PM
He stunned his fans last year with revelations of his abusive past and now Tyler Perry is opening up about just how bad it got.
In a new interview with Oprah Winfrey, which aired Wednesday, the writer-director says his own father beat him brutally. In one harrowing moment, he recalls when his father whipped him with a vacuum cord.
"To this day, I don't know why he did it," Perry, 41, says in the interview. "But I remember him cornering me in a room and hitting me with this vacuum cleaner cord. He would just not stop."
Originally posted 06/04/2010 03:05PM
Note to Mariah Carey: Tyler Perry wants a note from your doctor.
After the singer dropped out of his latest movie, an adaptation of Ntozake Shange's 1975 play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf, less than a week before filming was to begin, director Tyler Perry had to cut short his vacation and find a replacement.
"I said, 'What? You're kidding me?,' " Perry writes in a lighthearted new letter to his fans. "It's five days before she has to go to work; nobody does that. We have a deal."
Originally posted 03/23/2010 10:25AM
Janet Jackson says film director Tyler Perry was a major source of support when her brother Michael died unexpectedly last June – repeatedly checking on her and even halting work on the movie they were making together.
"He actually stopped production and was there for me," Jackson, 43, told PEOPLE on Monday at the New York premiere of Perry's new film, Why Did I Get Married Too? "[He was] constantly calling me, making sure I was OK, making sure that there wasn't anything that I needed or my family needed."
He is "such a sweetheart," she added, "so giving and so loving."
Originally posted 12/09/2009 10:30AM
Actor and producer Tyler Perry's mother, Willie Maxine Perry, has died at age 64.
"Willie Maxine Perry. February 12, 1945 to December 8, 2009. Thank you for all your prayers," a terse message on Perry's Web site said Tuesday.
There were no other immediate details about her death.
Perry, 40, credited his mother, a preschool teacher in New Orleans, as the inspiration for his most popular character, Madea. He recently recounted details of his troubled childhood, including how his mother tried and failed to leave his abusive father.
– Michael Y. Park
Originally posted 11/24/2009 01:20PM
In an unprecedented gesture, Tyler Perry has pledged $1 million to the country's oldest and largest civil rights organization, The NAACP.
"I feel so honored and blessed to be in a position where I can give," said Perry. "Had it not been for the perseverance and vision of the thousands who came before me in the 100 years of this legendary organization, I would not be in the position I am in today."
The millionaire and creative force behind the Madea film franchise and plays, as well as executive producer of this season's likely Oscar contender, Precious, represents the mission of the NAACP at work, says Chairman Julian Bond.
"Tyler is a courageous pioneer in bringing positive images of African American culture and struggles to the screen. His remarkable journey from poverty and childhood abuse to become one of the world’s most successful filmmakers and entrepreneurs is an inspiration to us all," Bond said.
Originally posted 10/10/2009 06:45PM
When Tyler Perry recently revealed a harrowing list of childhood traumas in a letter to his fans on his Web site, it seemed a necessary, if painful, confession for a man known more for his sense of humor.
Perry's revelations follow in the path of those made by one of his key inspirations – Oprah Winfrey.
After suffering depression and attempting suicide as a teenager, Perry was working an office job in 1991 when he saw an episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show that would change his life. In it, Winfrey – who early in her career revealed she was verbally and physically abused by relatives – talked about how writing down one's experiences could be cathartic.
Originally posted 10/06/2009 10:10AM
There's nothing funny about Tyler Perry's latest work: a revealing account of the horrific abuse he suffered as a child.
"I always thought I would die before I grew up," the comedian writes in an uncharacteristically somber letter to fans on his Web site.
After watching a screening of the lauded movie Precious, which he executive produced with Oprah Winfrey, about a 16-year-old girl who is physically and emotionally abused, the New Orleans native, 40, best known for his comic Madea character, reveals a flood of memories came back, and that "a large part of my childhood had just played out before my eyes."
Beginning with his mother's failed attempt to leave his abusive father, Perry recounts a horrific list of beatings and hardships he suffered.
"My father came home, mad at the world," he writes. "He was drunk, as he was most of the time. He got the vacuum cleaner extension cord and trapped me in a room and beat me until the skin was coming off my back."
Originally posted 07/21/2009 08:10AM
Tyler Perry is playing Santa to 65 Pennsylvania children from a largely minority day-care center whose outing was axed when they were turned away by a predominantly white swim club.
Instead of wading in the waters of the so-called exclusive Valley Swim Club in suburban Philly – whose members feared an influx of the black and Hispanic children, the adults were quoted as saying – these kids are going to Disney World, with Perry paying for the works: airfare, food, hotel and admissions for the three-day visit.
"He wanted to do something nice for them and let them know that for every negative experience, there are people out there who want them to succeed regardless of the color of their skin," Keleigh Thomas, publicist for the producer and Madea Goes to Jail star, tells CNN.
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