Some interesting things came out of the press conference held to promote Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes To Jail, the latest installment in Perry’s prolific career of inexpensive and independently popular dramedies revolving around a cantankerous, take-no-prisoners matriarch named Mabel Simmons, who don’t take crap from nobody. One of these came when someone tried to get on Perry’s case for technicalities in a scene involving a phone booth, to which Perry replied that he “took some liberties” and creative license with the exact functioning methodology of pay phones. When asked about his choices, he said:
“I ain’t tryin’ to direct nothing, man. You know what I do? I say ‘where’s the camera? Put the camera there, let me tell the story’ you know? I just want to make people laugh, tell a story that’s entertaining that people will enjoy. Spike Lee’s a director. Spielberg’s a director. They have style and they know where to put the camera. I just want to tell a story.”
So don’t get on him about how his movies are put together – seems he’s a director by necessity in order to get his screenplays made (although his cast will tell you different and praise his ability to get the best performances out of them). And along those lines, he has a project that he’s wanted to make for several years now that he’s been hounding Diana Ross about starring in, and he wants you to know about it.
“I want everybody to print this, okay? Tyler Perry is after Diana Ross. Just put that in the headline! I kinda laid off because I didn’t want them to have me arrested. I gotta get the right cast, and she’s a major part of it, along with Ben Kingsley and Cicely Tyson and Kimberly Elise and myself and somebody else. The script is done, and I’m going to do a rewrite on it. I wrote it in 1995, and I don’t do rewrites, but this one I’m going to do another rewrite on and figure it out from there. It’s called A Jazz Man’s Blues. I am stalking her. Tyler Perry is stalking Diana Ross. Print that. I want her in the movie. I’ve been sending flowers, I’ve been sending people by, I’ve been sending emails to people who know her, I talked to the man who walks her dog, I’ve been trying to figure out where she’s at, is she in the house in this part of the country or that part of the country? Is she doing a concert somewhere? Can I get backstage? Tyler Perry is stalking Diana Ross, yes.”
So there you have it, a dutiful report. We’ll see if Ms. Ross catches wind of it, and if she does, whether or not she’ll have a debate with Mr. Perry about whose name is in front of the title. Diana Ross’s A Jazz Man’s Blues, maybe? Would Perry go that far?
Take a look at Madea’s next adventure: