It ain’t easy being Madea.
Tyler Perry admitted this week that he’s written several of his plays, films and television shows solo, apparently hoping to inspire others with his work ethic. Many fans missed that sentiment, however, and called out the studio owner for not hiring writers.
“So, I don’t know if you know, this but all shows on television have a writer’s room,” Perry, 50, said in an Instagram clip Monday. “Most of the time, they’re 10 people, 12, whatever, that write on these television shows. Well, I have no writer’s room. Nobody writes any of my work. I write it all. Why am I telling [you] this? I wrote all of these scripts by myself in 2019. What’s my point? Work ethic!”
But rather than be inspired, many of Perry’s followers took issue with what they saw as his refusal to employ writers who could bring fresh perspectives to his work.
“Tyler Perry not having writers explains why his writing hasn’t evolved much,” wrote one critic. “I say that because when you have a writer’s room, you could bounce off of each other’s ideas. He doesn’t have anyone challenging him nor is he opening himself up to new thoughts.”
Others noted that Tyler should consider hiring black, female writers specifically, given that much of his work is told from that perspective.
Even fellow director Judd Apatow encouraged Perry to consider hiring a team, tweeting, “The most fun part of running a show is the writer’s room. You should try it @tylerperry. You make friends and laugh. Lots of Chinese food too! Occasionally someone says something so funny that you can’t breathe. Usually, it’s just a story from life and not usable in the show.”
But Perry also received support from fans who don’t blame him for finding a formula that works, with one fan writing, “Keep up the great work Mr. Perry, if it ain’t broke why fix it?”
Perry responded to both his supporters and naysayers with a photo of him in his “writer’s room,” which appears to be his lavish living room.
“My writer’s room!!!” he wrote Tuesday evening. “To the millions of you who are loving what I do and watch my shows every week, don’t worry, I ain’t stopping!!! Don’t forget. The Haves and the Have Nots returns tonight on @owntv and The Oval and Sistas return tomorrow on @BET!!”
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