“The Best Man” Director Chops Up Tyler PerryPublished by Clay Cane on Friday, February 18, 2011 at 12:00 pm.
On Wednesday night in Manhattan, Malcolm D. Lee, Spike Lee’s cousin and the director of 1999’s The Best Man, was featured at Broadway Night Out’s “The Filmmakers View.” The discussion ranged from writing a script to developing characters and the hustle of Hollywood. However, no discussion about Black film is relevant without a mention of the Tyler Perry phenomenon.
When asked about Perry by the host, Raqiyah Mays, Malcolm answered, “Tyler Perry is a very shrewd businessman. This dude has built an empire off of what he does and people support him.” He continued: “I have to admit, I enjoy some Madea. Madea’s funny to me. All the other stuff and the morality tales, I could do without. Just bring me more Madea!”
When talking about the merit of Perry’s work, just like his famous cousin, Lee didn’t hold back. “It’s not as terrible as people say it is, but it’s not as good as the box office numbers are. Just because something makes money doesn’t mean it’s good, it’s just popular, it taps into something people respond to. I don’t do what he does.” He continued: “He’s not interested in art, he’s interested in turning out a product. There is value in that, building up a studio and being independent. I wish he would get better as the movies go on. Maybe he will, I don’t know, but I don’t think that is his focus right now.”
Do you agree?
Photo Credit: Kevin Winters / Getty Images