Tyler Perry addressed the criticism from Spike Lee and others about his Madea character.
Perry recently sat down with journalist Chris Wallace for his CNN/HBO Max’s “Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace” show. During their discussion, Wallace pointed out the criticism the filmmaker received over his Madea character.
In particular, Wallace mentioned one incident when Spike Lee called Madea “coonery buffoonery” in 2019.
“Emasculating Black men, I’ve heard it all. Yeah,” he told Wallace. “There’s a certain part of our society, especially Black people in the culture, that they look down on certain things within the culture.”
Tyler then says the character is inspired by women he grew up around, whose stories he wanted to convey in a humorous way.
“For me, I love the movies that I’ve done,” Tyler adds. “Because they are the people that I grew up with that I represent and they, like, my mother would take me in the projects with her on the weekends. She played cards with these women.”
He continues, “Most of them have 12th-grade education. But their stories and how much they loved each other and how when they get sad about something and others would come in and make a joke. I’m 5 years old on the floor with my Matchbox cards.”
The beef between Spike and Tyler has since died down and been buried. In fact, in 2019, Tyler opened his studio lot in Georgia, and Spike was one of the many celebrities to visit. To further confirm the issue with the two is over, Tyler named a studio after the legendary director.