"No one man should have all that power!" Kanye? No. Tyler. Tyler Perry. "Colored girls" are having the best week ever courtesy of Mr. Perry. Likewise, I'm sure he's not doing too bad, either (cha-ching!). I saw the film "for colored girls who have considered suicide when the rainbow is enough" opening night, but this sisterfriend exodus was months in the making. I knew I was seeing this film the moment it was announced that Perry signed on to direct it. No previews necessary. The release date was still tentative, but didn't matter. I penciled it in my mental Rolodex "immegiately". This movie literally had my $12.50 at hello. I obviously wasn't the only one.
My group of girlfriends and I ordered our tickets weeks in advance and rolled into the theater about 20 deep in total. Black folks swarming--primarily black women--and mulitple sold-out times. It was beautiful and insane to see all at once. Tyler Perry has a reputation for not being the best writer on the block, so I'm stepping back, head cocked to the side, looking at all this with my writer's eyes like, wow, this man keeps writing, keeps making movies, people keep supporting with their time and money and conversation and at the end of the day the artistic value of his art is still questionable to most. Wow. This is big pimpin. I'm not a huge TP fan. I've left the theater disappointed more than once. His sitcom makes me cringe. But, I suppose that for all practical purposes I have willingly fallen prey to the Tyler Perry machine and have become part of his infamous "built in audience" and "loyal following".
Tyler Perry has "put me up on game": Keep doing what you do and write whatever the hell you want! It's okay! There is a market for everything and there will always be those there that support what you do. Those that don't support you or like what you do or how you do will still support you by association. They'll spend their money to see a film or buy a book just so they can trash it in good conscience. At the end of the day, the money still cometh. Also, if YOU believe in your work, others will, too. I'm sure Tyler is writing to the best of his ability and genuinely believes in these projects (I sure hope this is the case, at least). If you do your best and believe in what you do, then let that be enough. Everyone won't like it or agree with it, but if you feel peace with what you've made and feel it was God-inspired, then it is what it is.
I'm taking notes, Tyler. Can't wait to see what comes through me when I have that much power. Til then, I'm doing the best I can in this moment with the power I have to be authentic and 'art responsibly'.