Who ever imagined that a black boy would rise to become one of Hollywood's most respected movie makers?
Tyler Perry (real name Emmitt Perry, Jr.) is no longer that little smiling black boy. He has grown up to become one of Hollywood's most successful and favorite black movie makers grossing millions of dollars from each film he's created.
Tyler was born on September 13, 1969 in New Orleans, Louisiana USA and since 1992, he's been an actor, author, screen and playwright, producer, director, songwriter and MADEA!
At age 16, he had his first name legally changed from Emmitt to Tyler in an effort to distance himself from his father.
In 2011, Forbes named him the highest paid man in entertainment; he raked in $130 million between May 2010 and 2011.
As of 2014, The Haves and the Have Nots – one of his many TV series - has given Oprah Winfrey Network its highest ratings to date.
The series has also been critically acclaimed as being "one of OWN’s biggest success stories with its weekly dose of soapy fun, filled with the typical betrayals, affairs, manipulations and a bitch slap or two."
Perry received a $5.5 million budget to fund his first movie, Diary of a Mad Black Woman, which went on to gross $50.6 million domestically, while scoring a 15 percent approval rating at the film review web site Rotten Tomatoes.
Perry's film version of Madea's Family Reunion opened at number one at the box office on its opening weekend, February 24–26, 2006, with $30.3 million. The film eventually grossed $65million.
Perry is also a world-class author whose books have become best-sellers.
Famous black director Spike Lee also criticized his work in 2009 stating, "Each artist should be allowed to pursue their artistic endeavors but I still think there is a lot of stuff out today that is 'coonery' and buffoonery."
On September 25, 2014, it was announced that Perry was expecting his first child with his girlfriend Gelila Bekele, whom he has been dating on and off for five years. On November 30, 2014, Bekele gave birth to their son Aman Tyler Perry.