The producer, director, and writer, Tyler Perry, has again won the heart of many through his groundbreaking speech at the BET Awards on Sunday, June 23, 2019.
Perry was given the Ultimate Icon Award which was present by Taraji P. Henson. she said:
In a time when my counterparts were making way more money than I was, Tyler Perry was the first to pay me my exact worth.
In his powerful speech, Perry narrated his experience growing up in an abusive household and how he made his mother laugh by imitating women she played cards with.
These experiences birthed his first 10 movies.
That moment reminded me of my mother, bringing out of her pain with laughter, helping her cross,” he said. He added that he created those film in hopes of letting his mother know “she’s worthy, to let black women know you are worthy, you are special, you are powerful, you are amazing. All of that that was about helping her cross.”
When I built my studio, I built it in a neighbourhood that is one of the poorest black neighbourhoods in Atlanta so that young black kids could see that a black man did that, and they can do it too.
I was trying to help somebody cross. The studio was once a Confederate Army base, which meant that there was Confederate soldiers on that base, plotting and planning on how to keep 3.9 million Negroes enslaved. Now that land is owned by one Negro.
It’s all about trying to help somebody cross. While everybody else is fighting for a seat at the table, talking about ‘#OscarsSoWhite, #OscarsSoWhite,’ I said, ‘Y’all go ahead and do that. While you’re fighting for a seat at the table, I’ll be down in Atlanta building my own.’ Because what I know for sure is that if I could just build this table, God will prepare it for me in the presence of my enemies.
His speech was well delivered with a standing ovation. Watch his powerful moment here