There must be something about a Black man in a dress that drives folks crazy.Whoever knew the Chitlin circuit was so big.Maybe, Tyler Perry but thats it. Critics can’t understand the fascination of the emasculating image of a man in a dress but Playwright Tyler Perry, has turned his crazy-granny “Madea” character into a lucrative cottage industry, returned to the top of the box office on Sunday, exactly one year after stunning the industry with a No. 1 bow for his first film.
“Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Family Reunion,” which Perry wrote, directed and starred in, sold an estimated $30.3 million worth of tickets in its first three days since opening on Friday, distributor Lionsgate said.
Pery told Jet Magazine “I think this movie speaks to a lot of people about a lot of different things especially African American people. I’m staying true to the gift that god gave me ” However its a little different this time around since Madea is purposely toned down. “There’s no pistols in this one because of children, when we know better we do better.”I dealt with a lot of people who told me , my kids watch you all the time. So I took all the pistols out the movie because I thought it was important.”
The comedy-drama revolves around a pistol-toting matriarch, played by Perry, who beats and lectures her chaotic clan into submission. It was not screened in advance for critics, a tactic usually employed when a studio knows a movie will get harsh reviews but fans will turn out anyway.
While Perry, 35, is one of the best-known black playwrights in the United States, with sold-out shows in virtually every city for his “Madea” plays, he was barely a blip on the radar of mainstream movie audiences until last February when “Diary of a Mad Black Woman” opened at No. 1. The revenge comedy, budgeted at $5.5 million, ended its theatrical run with $50 million and was huge seller on home video. It was also released by Lionsgate, a unit of Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.
Last week’s champion, Walt Disney Co.’s fact-based survival saga “Eight Below,” slipped to No. 2 with $15.7 million, taking its 10-day total to $45.1 million.