Lionsgate recently announced that their first-look partnership with Tyler Perry is now a new multiyear arrangement for Perry’s films and home entertainment projects. (A first-look deal means that Lionsgate has the first right to accept or refuse a project.)
“Tyler Perry is one of the most powerful and unique entertainment brands in the world today, with a fan base that is virtually unrivaled in its loyalty and passion,” said Lionsgate co-chairman and chief executive officer Jon Feltheimer.
There has been a string of hits to prove just that: Diary of a Mad Black Woman, Madea’s Family Reunion, Daddy’s Little Girls, Why Did I Get Married?, Meet the Browns, The Family That Preys, I Can Do Bad All By Myself, Why Did I Get Married Too? and For Colored Girls.
In 2005, Tyler Perry’s debut film, Diary of A Mad Black Woman, opened number one at the box office nationwide and that opened a lot of eyes in Hollywood.
Who in Hollywood knew of the devoted, Black female-dominated, moviegoer niche? Who would have guessed that these savvy moviegoers would network among themselves, plan launch events and bring entire communities together in order to support Perry’s films on opening night?
Who could have predicted that the larger-than-life, smack-talking Madea would resonate with so many across gender and generational lines? Speaking of Madea, Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family will be released on April 22.
“We know that audiences want more Madea,” said president of Motion Picture Development and Production Michael Paseornek, “and we are thrilled that Tyler continues to respond to them.”
Lionsgate appreciates the drawing power of Perry, and the company will continue to distribute his films and DVDs under the new agreement. Future projects will include two additional Madea franchise films, with the option of other projects in conjunction with Perry’s production companies — 34th Street Films, Very Perry Films and Tyler Perry Studios.
“Together, Lionsgate and I have built the ideal filmmaker-studio relationship, and I’m thrilled that it will be continuing,” Perry said. “Lionsgate has been incredibly affirming of my relationship with my audience. I’ve always had the artistic freedom to speak what I want, how I want and when I want through my films.”
Over the past six years, Perry’s films for Lionsgate have grossed more than $520 million at the North American box office alone.
View the trailer: Madea’s Big Happy Family.