"Open Letter from Tyler Perry to his critics (swipe):"
(swiped from EUR)
*Tyler Perry has distributed another e-mail to his fans, this time defending the girth of his lead actors in “House of Payne,” the filmmaker’s new sitcom airing Wednesdays on TBS.
Stars LaVan Davis and Cassie Davis have apparently been criticized for being overweight. Also, Perry’s letter suggests that some have accused him of perpetuating the stereotype of portly black mothers.
Perry begins his e-mail response by pointing out the harsh treatment he’s received from critics throughout his career. He writes:
You all know that the critics have hated every thing that I have done over the years. Roger Ebert gave DIARY OF A MAD BLACK WOMAN-THE MOVIE an awful review, one critic called MADEA'S FAMILY REUNION-THE MOVIE the worst thing that he'd ever seen, some other critic said that DADDY'S LITTLE GIRLS shouldn't have ever been made and that I had to be stopped. Not to mention the plays, a critic in L.A. said of MADEA GOES TO JAIL, that it was the worst play he'd ever seen and that this type of show should not be at the Kodak Theatre, the home of the Oscars.
So over the years I have learned to ignore these people and keep doing what I feel that I am being led to do. But when people begin to attack certain cast members of HOUSE OF PAYNE because they are overweight, then I have to say something. Just because a person is overweight doesn't mean that they are less than anybody else. That's why these people have not been able to get a job for years in Hollywood. One person even asked, "Why do you even hire them?" I hire all kinds of people--thin, not so thin, tall, short, in shape, not in shape, Black, White, Latino. When somebody comes to work for me I don't see color, I don't see their size, all I want to know is "Can you do the job?"
One person asked why does the mama have to be a "FAT BLACK WOMAN" and said that I am perpetuating stereotypes by putting these overweight people on the show, as if there are no fat black women in America that are mothers. My mother and aunts are fat black women. And that upsets me to think that people, especially Black people, would say that I'm doing a disservice to America by putting them on T.V. Skinny does not make you beautiful. There are all kinds of beautiful women in this world. And if we begin to look at the heart of a person rather than prejudge then we would see that we are missing some of the nicest and most talented people in the world. I'm sorry but I had to get that off my chest. I just don't like to see good people hurt because of ignorance and intolerance.
I won't apologize for putting these people in this show. I don't ever remember hearing any of this about ROSANNE. They deserve to be on this show. They are very good, caring, God-fearing people who needed a hand. And I am so grateful that so many of you are watching HOUSE OF PAYNE and making their dreams come true everyday.
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