Tyler Perry vs. Spike Lee — The Epic Filmmaker Showdown
As previously reported on The Spotlight, Tyler Perry is an African-American filmmaker that has enjoyed massive commercial success both in the TV and film markets, and by judging by the initial response, he also has a lot of fans on TeenSpot.
However, his popularity has not been accepted by all of his fellow colleagues, most notably Spike Lee. In the past, Lee has been an outspoken critic of Perry’s work, suggesting that his commercially successful but not always critically acclaimed films set back the black community.
Spike, who originally paved the way in the 1980s for other African-American filmmakers said back in 2009 that Perry’s work is “coonery” and “buffoonery”, adding…
“I know it’s making a lot of money and breaking records, but we can do better. I see these two ads for these two shows (Tyler Perry’s ‘Meet the Browns’ and ‘House of Payne)’, and I am scratching my head. We got a black president, and we going back to Mantan Moreland and Sleep ‘n’ Eat?”
What does Tyler Perry think about the criticism?
At a recent press conference for Medea’s Big Happy Family the filmmaker did not hold back.
“I’m so sick of hearing about damn Spike Lee. Spike can go straight to hell! You can print that. I am sick of him talking about me, I am sick of him saying, ‘this is a coon, this is a buffoon.’ I am sick of him talking about black people going to see movies. This is what he said: ‘you vote by what you see,’ as if black people don’t know what they want to see.”
“Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois went through the exact same thing; Langston Hughes said that Zora Neale Hurston, the woman who wrote ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God,’ was a new version of the ‘darkie’ because she spoke in a southern dialect and a Southern tone. And I’m sick of it from us; we don’t have to worry about anybody else trying to destroy us and take shots because we do it to ourselves.”
Do you agree with Tyler Perry’s sentiments on the black community or does Spike Lee have a point about his work lacking significance?
[PHOTO: Nikki Nelson / WENN.com]
Tags: African-American filmmakers, Do the Right Thing, House of Payne, Langston Hughes, legendary African-American filmmaker, Medea's Big Happy Family, Meet the Browns, movies, showbiz, Spike Lee, Tyler Perry, W.E.B. DuBois, Zora Neale Hurston
Adil_Omar on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 at 5:58 am
AlexJefferson on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 1:16 pm
Both film makers have nothing in common as far as directing goes. The only similarity is that they are involved with the black community.
As far as Spike Lee’s comment goes, he’s allowed to voice his opinion. It’s not as if he doesn’t know what he’s talking about. The man’s responsible for the movie’s Malcom X, Jungle Fever, and other great documentaries like 4 Little Girls. The closest Tyler’s ever gotten to actual noteworthy drama is Precious and he was only a producer.
The-Cat-In-The-Hat on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 11:14 am
Wow. Spike got a bug up his ass, eh?
Tyler and Spike are both gifted directors, they should just shake hands and be done with it.
panicatmonty on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 10:51 am
Tyler Perry movies are entertaining, movies should be that way, as well as dramatic, liike Spike Lee films. I think Tyler Perry and Spike just need to chill out. I think Tyler Perry, being a born again christian, was wrong in what he said to Lee, even after he was critiscized. Spike Lee needs to learn that even though Tyler Perry movies are usually comedic, they always have a strong message that balances with the goofiness. Good luck to both Lee and Perry on their future projects.
YunqArab on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 9:38 am
Tyler Perry Has Better Work Than Spike Lee,Tyler Perry Writes All These Plays,Movies,Shows To Give Ppl A Reason To Laugh And Smile,Spike Lee Should Do Us All A Favor And Retire From Film Making.
Badgurl2010 on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 8:26 am
Tyler Perry Is better, the madea movies are Funny as hell in fact i’m going to go see Madea’s Big Happy Family this weekend!!
imaniluvya on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 8:06 am
Adil_Omar on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 7:19 am
Tyler Perry sucks. Spike Lee >
shesBORED on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 12:58 am
**** spike lee
the last time he made a successful movie was over 2decades ago
SeashellsBlue on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 12:29 am
I wish Spike Lee would stfu. He always feels as if he is the voice of black people. Shut up. I totally agree, he is a hater. He talked about Oprah, Obama, Rev, Jackson, Al Sharpton; every black person is beneath him. *sarcasm noted. Madea is funny and lots of people go see the films because they are funny. Not everything has to be literal and “set black folks” back.