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Tyler Perry And For Colored Girls: Somebody Walked Off Wid Alla (Our) Stuff!

15 September 2009 32 Comments

Editors Note: This piece was originally a guest post at The Black Snob, but I wanted to make sure everyone caught it. If you want to jump in on the original discussion head on over to the comments there, otherwise comments, as usual, are also welcome here.

Getting his hot little hands on Ntozake Shange’s 1975 play “For Colored Girls who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf,” was coup of the year for Tyler Perry. Not only will he produce and direct the upcoming film version, the King of Coonery will also write the adaptation of what may be the most important work about black female identity ever. Ask any black woman, especially the artsy/moody/self-aware type, about “For Colored Girls…” and she will respond with a wistful look and fond memories. I was Lady in Blue in a high school production and have told more than one sorry dude “insteada being sorry all the time, try being yourself,” quoting the Lady In Red (but playing it off like I came up with it on my own). This is classic material and now we can expect the intentionally stripped-down aesthetic of Shange’s work to be replaced by style choices that only a closeted gay man could make. Even worse, Perry has announced that he’d like to cast the likes of Oprah, Halle Berry, and Beyonce to tackle the play’s issues, which include love, rape, abortion, and relationships. Beyoncé??? Please pass the Xanax.

fcg

How did we come to such a low point in black entertainment? Sadly, money always talks. Did you know that Tyler Perry’s films have grossed about $319 Million in seven years, while Spike Lee’s have grossed $372 million in twenty-three years? When you account for the inclusion of rather mainstream flicks like Inside Man ($88 mil) in Lee’s canon, Tyler Perry is really in black folks pockets at an alarming speed. We’re going to see his movies in droves and I just cannot figure out why. Maybe it’s easy for whole church buses to go see a Perry flick after Sunday service, maybe we’re just happy to see black folks on-screen no matter what they do, or maybe we don’t have the sense of a Billy goat when it comes to choosing meaningful entertainment – I just don’t know. But the end result is the proliferation of a parade of empty, stereotypical characters, humor so dry it could sop up Jermaine Jackson’s hairdo, and the persistent depiction of black women whose lives are not complete unless they can find and hold onto a good black man. When we begged for greater representation on-screen, this is not what we had in mind.

Can I go back to Beyoncé and the meds I’ll need to watch her act again, especially in such a groundbreaking piece? It’s hard for me to even write about it because my thumbs have spontaneously become paralyzed into the DOWN position. First of all, I haven’t forgotten Beyoncé notifying the world that she’s not black, she’s Creole, which is the exact OPPOSITE of the “For Colored Girls…” message. Let’s also not forget that Beyoncé CANNOT act. I’ve given her too many chances to demonstrate that she can, and after watching her try to squeeze out tears while trying not to look directly into the camera I’ve concluded that the only role she’d excel in is an adaptation of Pinocchio – on camera, the girl looks like she’s made of wood. Her clumsy speech pattern is the stuff that gets folks flunked out of Julliard. There’s something about how her tongue sits in her mouth – its too big, its too wide, its too strong, it won’t fit. Why is this happening, again? Greed. Not just greed for money, but for recognition.

tyler

Whether or not Beyoncé ends up in the film, Perry has a special talent for creating the illusion that otherwise credible black actors don’t have enough talent for mystery dinner theater, so I have to consider anything he controls creatively a lost cause. However, as executive producer in a joint venture with Oprah Winfrey, Tyler Perry sat in the audience for Precious, a film highly praised by critics at the Sundance Film Festival (you may have heard the buzz about excellent performances from Mariah Carey and Mo’Nique). As the audience ooh’d and ahh’d at how creatively stunning it was, Perry scratched his chin and said “Hmmm. I want me some of this.” So now what should be a landmark moment in black female cinema directed by any of the renowned black female directors out there – Kasi Lemmon (Eve’s Bayou), Gina Prince-Bythewood (The Secret Life Of Bees), Debbie Allen (no explanation needed) or Nzinga Stewart (who was originally slated to direct the film) – is instead sure to fall flat under Perry’s control.

What’s saddest of all to me is that, as much as we can expect Perry to butcher Shange’s work, won’t so many of us feel obligated to see it anyway? Will we bite our tongues and watch, even if just for the sake of criticism and cultural commentary? Or will we consider ourselves lucky to absorb the prose and poetry of “For Colored Girls…” on the big screen for the first time? Should we patronize questionable black films just because they’re intended for us or should we boycott what we suspect is garbage? This is a persistent quandary that those of us interested in thoughtful black entertainment continue to face. Just what is a black woman to do with such a mess? When I ask myself these questions I’m reminded of Shange’s Lady in Green: “bein’ alive, bein’ a woman, and being colored is a metaphysical dilemma/ I haven’t yet conquered.” After thirty-four years at least that much still rings true.

32 Comments »

  • Joy said:

    Wow Thembi! You covered every hint of what was in my mind in this article. Doesn’t Perry know he isn’t sacred enough for this work? Doesn’t he know that the essence of this book oozes and drips with the spirit of black women solely? I would love, love, love to see Kasi Lemmons do this piece. But when people have money to buy rights, they have the right do what they want I guess. I’m with you, somebody just walked off with alll my stuff, and I didn’t give it to him!!!

  • ntngale said:

    add jasmine guy to a list of possible directors. i hear she had a wonderful run with this very same play in ATL. to paraphrase the great Shange, “just because you took it don’t make it yours, it makes it stolen”. why can’t WE (black women) just have something? we live it, we struggle thru it, and one of us was enlightened enuf to put into words what so many of us have felt at some point. why couldn’t we follow it all the way thru by directing it too? imitation, popularity, stereotyping, and bufoonery aren’t the criteria i would use in selecting a person to direct such a sacred treasure to most of the black women i know. name recognition does not a meaningful work make. but, in the interest of the almighty dollar, the bevy of great talented AA women that are more than qualified to really do justice to this play are being deep-sixed, much in the same fashion that the early AA actors were supplanted black-faced scoundrels.

  • Stacy said:

    Interestingly enough I first heard of “For Colored Girls” when I was 16 and away at a summer program in rural MA. One afternoon when I couldn’t join my group on a field trip, my acting teacher handed me a VHS to watch instead. He was this Harley-Davidson riding, chain smoking, tattooed white man (who was brilliant by the way) who was surprised I had never heard of it and told me it was a MUST that I watch this play. I would hate to see it ruined for millions of other black girls. Lets just hope Tyler Perry surprises us this time around…

  • thais said:

    You said it best: “King of Coonery!” KING! And how are you going to mesh Oprah and Halle in a movie with Beyonce? Wow.

  • msladydeborah said:

    I am trying to keep an open mind about this project. But that opening just grew a little more narrow after reading who he thinking about casting.

    For Colored Girls was our voice back in the seventies. It was truly a masterwork for us. It still ranks as one of my favorite pieces of theatre.

    I am going to see the film. Even if I have to purchase a bootleg copy of it. :-) I cannot imagine how this is going to work out-and if Tyler knows what I know-he’d better do all he can to work it. Or he needs to be preapred for the backlash from us. If he really cannot get it together-I’d just as soon see him leave it alone.

  • Thais said:

    Is Madea going to be cast in it?

  • Ms. Debi~ said:

    Beyonce is not the right one for this piece at all!.
    She cant act and I just wouldnt be able to take her seriously…

  • Regina said:

    ~smh~
    I am hoping for the best but the supposed cast is killing me. I can see Oprah doing an ultra black role because she can draw from her
    Sophia role in the Color Purple, so for now I’ll give her a pass, but Halle is not convincing as being black or as being an actress and Beyonce should stick to the 2 dimensional Diana Ross type roles because she is definitely not an actress.
    When I was younger I remembered “Colored Girls” and the power behind it.
    BUT with TP at the helm and the non black girls acting in what kind of impression will the ladies of this millennium get from it???
    I am trying to keep an open mind here but…..
    ~smh~

  • clarahallow121 said:

    how disappointing. Beyonce? Halle? Umm…for COLOURED girls…? Give me a sodding break already. Tyler Perry tried hard to put soul in his work when he first started as a play writer but now I’m feeling a tad bit embarrassed. “Coloured Girls” should be off limits for Mr. Perry. King of Coonery, I’m not sure, but he’s definitely not the man for this one. I do NOT want Lady in Blue to become Sapphire.

  • Mrs. Rivers said:

    This is a great analysis.

    I am so sick of the chitlin circuit/made-for-tv/vacation bible school field trip films by Tyler Perry. And to hear that he will be making a movie on “For Colored Girls . . .” annoys me to no end. Some things just shouldnt be remade — especially knowing that they will be remade wrong!

    I wont even comment on Bey being apart of the film. I am just irritated with all directors that choose well known celebrities (mostly singing sensations that havent taken one acting class in life!) over taking the time seek out true talented actors and actresses that spend years honing their craft — all for a boost in box office sales.

    But if you think about it; Black entertainment has hit an all time low. The only black television shows on TV are either by Mr. Perry himself, or a bootleg embarrassing reality show on BET (take your pick. . .). Which means between BET and TBS, you can tune into coonery almost everyday of the week!

    We’ve got to do better….

  • Darnell Walker said:

    we must watch it – holding our tongues as to not piss off the church goers as perry skirts around the issues Shange did not.

    my question is: where is shange in all of this?

    damn, this has ruined my mood for the year.

  • reelist said:

    The problem with Black entertainment is US! Here we are criticizing the man before it even hits the paper. We’ve labeled his work Coonery?? How often have you seen Black talent in positive LEAD roles in Mainstream tv and film lately?? How many black men do you know who OWNS there own movie studio? Tyler is serving the community and were bitchin and complainin because it’s not condusive to white Hollywood.
    Now grant it he’s not the most prolific writer and am Not a Fan of Beyonce or Halle as choices but this business is about revenue!! Tyler isn’t gonna make money off of Very talented actresses! Beyonce is a Marketing Tool yall, she isn’t being cast for acting abilities or lack of rather. These casting choices are a business move and yes I will support it to give a brother more leverage in Hollywood regardless of how bad it is. However, he just might surprise the he’ll out of us because his writing has improved and he can only get better and we ,Black People ,need to support that!

  • Loonesta said:

    We are at a low point in ALL forms of “entertainment”. This film ought to be made by Ntozake Shange or people over which she has some form of artistic control, or even approval. The idea of Tyler Perry doing this film is as stomach-lurching as the idea of Kenny G doing a Sun Ra tribute album.

  • Will Saunders said:

    I think the most difficult part in directing/producing “For Colored Girls” will be casting it. The people I believe who would make the best cast are probably too old for the roles. Perhaps there is some untapped talent out there. I was really surprised when I first heard that T.P. was going to be involved in this. The genre of “For Colored Girls” is very different than the types of works for which T.P. has been involved. Maybe he can do it, but he’ll definitely need to get some strong performers involved.

  • Shola Akinnuso said:

    Thembi,

    You’re a fantastic writer and the type of woman I’d love to bring over to the West Coast. That said, I disagree with you on your Tyler Perry opinion. I’m unsure whether people are angry because of the position he holds, or that there isn’t enough diversity of films offered to black folk. I’m still trying to figure out what either argument has to do with Tyler Perry.

    Here’s a counter-argument to Thembi’s:

    http://www.popcultureshock.com/tyler-perry-king-fools-beautiful-struggle/50618/#more-50618

  • Victoria Muhammad said:

    Sad, sad, sad…just sad all around. I don’t want to knock a black man down, but MY GOD he also has to know his limits and boundaries not to cross. And in doing this piece, and even more so doing it and not casting more thoughtfully…Perry is messing up the little bit of a good name (I credited him with).

  • Danielle said:

    I too was shocked when I heard TP was making this movie. I had the real pleasure of actually seeing the play when it first came to WDC years and years ago. I cannot conceive how he is going to pull this off. Does anyone realize that he has gotten rich from stereotyping Black Women. As far as the actresses he is talking about…What about Angela Bassett, Regina King, CC Pounder and a host of others who really can act. And my biggest question, where is Shange in all of this? She sold the rights to him!

  • jazzfan360 said:

    @Reelist: You gotta be f*cking KIDDING me. As an actor, as a writer, as someone who’s studied the industry since childhood, and as someone who is all of those things AND black and FULLY, thank you, understands the difficulties we’ve had within said industry, I don’t know what angries up my blood more, the fact that you feel the casting of completely inappropriate actors as a marketing tool justifies ruining the vision and sanctity of art that somebody once slaved over to perfect, or the fact that you defend Tyler Perry when anyone of any race with any taste or class or interest in quality who has the ability to be objective can clearly see that for all his success and all the strides he’s made, Tyler Perry is hurting ALL of us.

    This is not a “One small step for a man…” situation. Yeah, no crap–we’re all aware Tyler Perry is, all unto himself, a multilliondollar (quickly approaching billion, I’m sure) industry, and has “given the black community a mainstream voice” where it did not so much have one before, and has given prominent roles to many black actors great and not-so-great, and now We’re in box-office successes and record-breaking TV series, and glory be, ain’t that just all.

    Yeah–see–trouble is?? None of it is quality. I grimace with shame when I happen past TBS and see those folks shinin’ ’round on Meet the Browns–and I’m not the only one. And sure, there’s a lot more cooning there than in some of the movies, for sure–there was some degree of class, for instance, to many of the proceedings in Diary of a Mad Black Woman–but even when there’s no cooning, what we receive is poorly directed and, at best, poorly written and conceived. Can’t We have have class AND quality, or are we limited to Eve’s Bayou, repeated revivals of Raisin in the Sun, the “Step in the Name of Love” video, The Collected Works of Diahann Carroll, and our old Polly tapes?

    There’s something you need to realize: the mainstreaming of Tyler Perry comes with a COST. You think these are mainstream just because of black folks’ money?? Hell no. Somehow–and God help me, I cannot figure it out and I have TRIED–somehow, this stuff has defied class, age, and race, and people of all colors and creeds are throwin their money at Mr. Perry. I seriously know groups of high-income, Sex-and-the-City-wannabe, designer-shoe-wearing, cosmo-drinking twentysomething white girls who’ll get together in groups of six and eight and make an evening of going to Tyler Perry STAGE SHOWS when they pass through town, because they love the movies so much. Lord have mercy, the chitlin circuit’s gone mainstream, and it’s the worst thing that could ever happen to Us.

    You realize, don’t you, the whole world is now watching Us act like damn fools? Mr. Perry’s works wring out every last modern black stereotype there is, from the junkie whore to the rotund, hmyn-sangin’ church mama and everything in between. And we’re not even afforded the decency of shades of gray within those. The characters are either good, or they’re not (but that doesn’t mean Jesus can’t redeem them in the end)–but then, one can’t really expect depth from a character who’s been imbued with only one dimension.

    The whole world is seeing these movies and these plays and these shows, and it’s just one more damn thing that’s convincing anybody who doesn’t already know any better that black people are exactly what they’ve always been told. As a people–a people who, dammit, have something REAL and VIABLE and QUALITY to offer just like any other race–that is just f*cking offensive. And please believe, it would be another thing entirely if this were all done in good, simple fun, but Mr. Perry’s hollow works ring with (literally!) holier-than-thou sanctimony which repeatedly put across that he truly believes he’s doing Us a service with these and, at the end of the day, seriously has something to impart. I wouldn’t waste this kind of thought or emotion on something like Method and Red (a bizarre anomaly in that it made me angry AND it made me laugh) or even Soul Plane or Pootie Tang because, as hateful as they are, when you get right down to it, they’re silly trifles and they were never, ever, ever intended to be anything more than that. If I were Jewish, I’d say the same thing about The Nanny; if I were Greek, I’d say the same thing about My Big Fat Greek Wedding…all in good fun? Might ruffle a feather here and there, but more or less, no harm, no foul. Nobody walked onto the set of I Got the Hookup and thought, “If I just reach out and make a difference in one person’s life with this…” And for that alone, there’s a difference here. Mr. Perry’s projects take themselves very seriously, and so those who follow them take them seriously as well. And they strip Us down to the most very basic elements, which we all know is really just a diplomatic way of saying “the lowest common denominator.” We as a people deserve more than that. It sets our culture back several years.

    But far, far more criminal is the damages it’s done our race in the entertainment industry. Tyler Perry is not a trailblazer. Please do not mistake him for such. He is an exception. He is not Spike Lee, who, wherever he might lie more recently in terms of artistic merit, broke tremendous ground for not only blacks both artistically AND culturally, giving Us a voice (that had something to SAY) in a way We really hadn’t before–the difficulties and eventual success of his early films made way for a whole lot of fresh, vital, searing auteurs to explode out of the box and make themselves heard (John Singleton being just one of them).

    Mr. Perry is also not “giving all of us a leg up” in the manner of a Sammy Davis, Jr. or a Melvin Van Peebles or a Bill Cosby or an Eddie Murphy or even Mos Def, facing some difficulty and taking some major lumps while carving out something real and proving himself and, by extension, an entire race on his shoulders and running the bases so the next cat behind him doesn’t have it so tough.

    Nobody’s gonna come up after Tyler Perry, or as a result of the work he’s done–not unless it’s someone he directly gives assistance and endorsement…and why would he do that, when he’s proven that he can have the EN-tire Black Cinema pie for himself and has the box-office and ratings clout to keep it? Hell, I’d probably snatch up every crumb I could get, too, if I were him.

    There will not be a new wave of exciting black directors, or exciting black movies. And IF for some reason we eventually do get that, it will not be because of Tyler Perry. (The media will tell you that it is, but you heard the truth here first.) Know what makes money in entertainment right now? Rehashing what’s safe. Why risk an entire market on some untested variable, when they’ve got the neverending fountain commodity that is Tyler Perry, who can apparently churn an entire Madea script on while waiting for his Pop-Tarts, and simply putting his name on something is as good as a hundred million dollars? Why WOULD you try anything else? It’s just smart business.

    And I’ll tell you something–IF the studios are looking for more black writers and directors, they’re looking for the next Tyler Perry. IF there is a wave of other individuals and films that come as a result of this, they will only be a useless, toothless line of clones all resembling the wheezing shell that spawned them, ’cause even Our most world-famous Spike can’t pull the money Mr. Perry’s works do, and now The Powers That Be are convinced We can only make money if we shuck and/or jive. You mark my words.

    I don’t wanna hear somebody preach to me about what Tyler Perry has done for black folks, and I damn sure don’t wanna hear about what he’s done for us in entertainment. You wanna know what he’s done for us in entertainment? Erased a few decades. Looking at his oeuvre and the money its made and the quality of the output, you’d swear we never had the scorching freshness of Do The Right Thing, the educated middle finger of The Boondocks, the tortured outlet of Good Times, the gentle sterotype battering ram that was The Cosby Show, or even the grittiness of Superfly, a genuine morality play that actually had a need and a point. None of it matters anymore…not as far as concerns the almighty dollar, or those who control them, or those too young to know and appreciate.

    And certainly not, it would seem, to Tyler Perry.

    So pardon my offense.

  • MissG said:

    I often wonder with the number of talented female directors and screen writers working, why is it that the male perspective of womanhood is often more appreciated by black people; even when these depictions are overwhelming negative and feeding some type of egotism? Spike Lee had his graphic sex/porn scenes that were embarrassing and degrading and now there’s Tyler Perry with his emotionally retarded, upwardly mobile cold-hearted bitches who just need to be rescued by a good, kind, blue-collar man (he’s never a doctor, or lawyer or financial and professional equal). There’s no diversity of character, or depth for that matter, just one dimension of their greatest flaw exaggerated to the nth degree. I’m wondering does he really see all successful black women as devoid of a soul and emotions? Furthermore, why are these women so appealing to the masses. While Madea is hilarious, she too is often exaggerated to a point that’s unrealistic. Mr. Perry needs to evolve his stories and his characters.

  • Nicole J. Butler said:

    I so hope he hires real actresses and not just celebrities who can put butts in seats by virtue of their built-in audience.

  • RK said:

    get it together, Tembi. i’m tired of defending Tyler Perry from the ravaging of you Spooks. would you (rhetorical– don’t answer) rather the movie NOT get made than have it made by a man that’s guaranteed to deliver at the box office? there’s no pleasing you people.

    i hate Blacks (except the ones in the family and even THEY get the side eye!)

    here’s some of my defenses of Tyler AND Beyonce.

    read and weep! (or don’t read, but still weep!)

    http://newsone.com/entertainment/opinion-smart-black-people-vs-tyler-perry/

    http://newsone.com/entertainment/opinion-10-biggest-black-snubs-at-the-oscars/

  • lady j said:

    i stumbled across your blog during my current bout of insomnia and i love it. kudos! . . .sigh* and i was Lady in Purple in my college production.

  • Thembi Ford (author) said:

    @Shola Akinnuso and @RK

    I’m responding to your comments because you both, in different ways, made the same set of mistakes in responding to this article. Shola, thanks so much for the praise, and I *do* in fact intend to come to the west coast soon. I really do appreciate you taking the time to consider the thinking behind this piece. RK, I’m not sure where you get off leaving a comment talking about “get it together Tembi(sp?)” when you actually write for a black news site and I’m sure you can articulate yourself better than that. I’d usually delete racial rhetoric but I’d like to make a point.

    What you have in common, aside from dropping links to your own work (a strategy that I’m not particularly feeling but I’ll let slide for today since I am commenting on them) is that neither of you said word one about For Colored Girls. THAT is what this piece is about. I could write on and on about how Tyler Perrys work is bad for black folks, how we shouldn’t watch it, how he should be banned and strung up on a pole and beaten with a bag of nickels. But I didn’t. This piece is about the fact that Perry’s ART lacks depth and is poorly executed, and he is no match for the high art that is Shange’s piece. At his best, Perrys work is entertaining but it’s not artistic and everyone, including Perry, knows that. There is an issue of incompatibility here; I’d feel the same way if the Wayans Brothers or Farrelly Brothers were about to direct the piece and put John Witherspoon and Jim Carrey in it. I’d also be mad about seeing a great stoic actor like Morgan Freeman as the new cast member on Saturday Night Live. Some things just don’t fit, and deciding its about who is smart or who is middle class doesn’t change that fact. Can you tell me how Perry is a FIT for this project? Because unless you can, you’re just debating the merits of Perry’s existence, which I simply have no desire to do.

    So to you both, your defenses of Perry in general, while I agree with some parts but mostly disagree, are totally irrelevant. I don’t particularly present myself as part of the black intelligentsia, but when it comes down to it, I read For Colored Girls as a teenager. It’s high art but accessible to someone who hasn’t even finished high school! People may like TP and Beyonce movies, and they may make money, but when it comes down to it I’ll answer you both: no, Id rather not have the FCG movie made at all if the movie that is made turns out to be an insulting piece of garbage.

  • RK said:

    good catch on my misspell. i’m usually better about that. about to head to the library in a few to grab “For Colored Girls” so i can argue with some information instead of just passion. wonder where all this hostility was when Spielberg made “The Color Purple”?

    why isn’t Perry given credit for being a good filmmaker (which he is)?

    who ELSE was gonna make this movie?

    as for the self plug, “Love 40, baby…”

    now which Black flick is THAT from?

    also, glad you had enough integrity to leave in the racial self-loathing. i think it adds a certain elan to all MY art and i wouldn’t have appreciated it if you, Thembi, (sees! i can spells!) took it upon yourself to manipulate my art!

  • RK said:

    oh… btw, i AM a fan. just disagree here.

  • Thembi Ford (author) said:

    @RK

    You disagree that Tyler Perry’s work is not good, but how can you disagree with my argument that he’s a bad fit for For Colored Girls if you’re not familiar with the play? This is what I don’t get.

    I kept in the racial self-loathing, as a fan you know how I do lol. Anyway I’ll answer your questions quickly and put it to bed:

    wonder where all this hostility was when Spielberg made “The Color Purple”?

    – People WERE hostile about it, and purists insist that the movie was horrible compared to the original book. Truth be told, a lot of the race, class, and sexual subtext of the book was not conveyed in the movie at all. I didnt complain at the time because I was only six years old.

    why isn’t Perry given credit for being a good filmmaker (which he is)?
    -We can argue this all day, but he simply is no a good filmmaker. Unless good = dollar generating that is. His characters are flat, the humor is dry, the acting is weak, the storylines are trite – come on, I went over this in the above piece. If you feel otherwise, we can agree to disagree but don’t bother trying to convince me he has artistic talent. Even he knows he is doing what sells and has openly admitted as much.

    who ELSE was gonna make this movie?
    – As I said before theres a long list of directors who would be great. Nzinga Stewart was originally going to do it but Perry used his pull to get her bumped off of the project after she partnered up with Lionsgate, the production company that also houses his studio. The fact that youre asking that questions demonstrates a big part of the Perry problem – why do we, and then Hollywood, act like there are no other black filmmakers out there?

  • RK said:

    we agree more than we disagree. “Color Purple” WAS a far better book than movie. the movie even missed the semi-reconciliation between Mr. and Celie that was clear at the end of the book.

    i’m just gonna hafta flat out disagree with you on Tyler. “Why Did I Get Married” was great and i liked “Daddy’s Little Girls” too.

    now, i’m no big “let’s all go to the church and moan” fan as far as Perry is concerned, but i take exception with Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On” because in the song “God is Love”, Marvin keeps implying that God is a MAN! and “What’s Going On” is the greatest artist rendering in any form of all time!

    also, see what typing what passion does to a writer? look at you there in paragraph 5. i’m sure you meant to write “not” instead of “no”.

    hostility is contagious!

    let’s go to the gym!

  • jazzfan360 said:

    ::Blinks:: What the hell happened here??

  • Tania& Jeremy said:

    Tyler Perry is doing it big once again!!!!!! This man of God is truly a blessing in lives that touches through his movies because he has helped me, my family, and numerous of other famlies who’ve been through alot and to watch his films is like healing to the soul!!! I can’t wait to see this next film he has in the works because I know it’s going be awesome especially with talented women such as OPRAH,MAYA ANGELOU,BEYONCE,HALLE BERRY AND ETC who have really made such an impact in the black community and abroad!!! AND TO THOSE WHO HAVE SOMETHING AGAINST BEYONCE BEING IN THE FILM, PLEASE GET OVER IT AND STOP TRYING TO DICTATE WHO YOU THINK SHOULD GET THE PART AND WHO SHOULDN’T BECAUSE ALOT OF YOU DON’T KNOW SHIT OF WHAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT EITHER!! ALOT OF THESE WOMEN INCLUDING BEYONCE HAVE ACHEIVED SO MUCH WITH HAVING REAL TALENT AND THAT SPEAKS VOLUMES FOR MY GIRL BEYONCE WHO IS ONLY 28 YRS OLD, AND SHE HAS 10 GRAMMY AWARDS AND A HOST OF OTHER ACCOLADES THAT HER TALENT & HER HUMBLE SPIRIT HAS GIVEN HER!! SO, PLEASE CUT IT OUT WITH THE BEYONCE,MARIAH,AND ALICIA, BASHING. IT’S NOT A BIG DEAL IF TYLER DIDN’T CHOOSE J. HUD,SHE ISN’T THE BEST ACTRESS NOR SINGER AT THAT,JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE A BIG VOICE DOESN’T MAKE YOU A BETTER SINGER BECAUSE SHE DOESN’T HAVE VOICE CONTROL ANYWAYS BUT,THAT’S ANOTHER STORY LOLZ!!

  • OneBrownSnowPea said:

    Oh No!! This is horrible news!!! Tyler is not a visionary director or writer. One of the previous commentators said how can we judge how he will approach it when we haven’t seen it yet. The answer is simple: Directors, writers, producers, actually any creative person is judged by what they have done in the past. Everyone knows a Spielberg/Scorsese film is going to be good because of their track record of producing very good films. Tyler Perry’s movies may sell movie tickets but he is not a good director/writer and doesn’t come up with anything thought-provoking or innovative. He falls back on the same old stereotypes.

    Black men have mostly proven themselves to not be the best at portraying black
    female issues well on film. To me, it seems like Tyler is using this to draw on the black female audience that is his main demographic. I’m not sure if Tyler actually has real respect and passion for this work of literature. With Mr. Perry’s track record being as it is; I probably won’t see this in theaters when it is released. I won’t even comment on Beyonce and her “acting” SMH.

  • tony stern said:

    I heard For Colored Girls is going up on a mainstage in Hollywood. Does anybody know when?

  • Black-Thought said:

    You’ve covered so many issues that have crossed the minds of many who’ve learned of the Tyler Perry film. Like many others I’m delighted that the play is being made into a film. I’m skeptical about Tyler Perry’s handling of it and am twisting my fingers into ridiculous shapes in the hope that I will be pleasantly surprised. The trailer showing Janet Jackson in closeup while emphasizing, or rather overemphasizing her audible gulping already causes me to both gulp and shudder. Still, I am keeping hope alive and will probably see the film shortly after it opens. My thinking, again, is that by supporting films with black actors and/or black directors it sends a message to the industry that there’s a market for films about people of color. Step two of that, of course, is getting the industry to understand the diversity of images needed to reflect the totality of the black experience, and to understand that black characters, like characters in every race, are multi-dimensional and are worthy of quality scripts and first-rate directors, both of which exist in the black community. Anyway Thembi, many thanks for your analysis. I just found your blog and will be following it. If it’s ok with you I’d like to link to it from my own blog, http://www.black-thought.com. Give it a look, if you can. And thanks again.

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