Filmmaker and actor Tyler Perry brings Madea to the big screen once again in A Madea Christmas. This holiday film features Perry’s Madea traveling with her cousin (Anna Maria Horsford) to make an unexpected visit to her cousin’s daughter’s home on a farm. The trip eventually leads to lessons about family, race, bullying and the true meaning of Christmas. Perry spoke to ro about his new movie.
“[The] timing felt right for me,” Perry explained. “I’d done a bunch of movies but the timing was so perfect, I just decided to do it.”
For star Tika Sumpter, it was enjoyable working with the assured director.
“Working with Tyler was definitely a fun experience,” she explained. “It was definitely working with somebody who knew what they needed and wanted. But it was a collaborative effort. He’s an actor’s director and our input is important. Or at least he makes us feel it is. He’s an actor, so he understands that relationship.
“This was so much fun to work on,” she continues. “A lot of the time, I’m in dramas or serious [projects]. It was such a nice release to be around people who are really funny. It was a joy.”
Part of that fun came from comedian-actor Larry the Cable Guy, who stars alongside Kathy Najimy as an unexpected Christmas guest.
“He’s such a brilliant guy,” says Perry. “His comedy is so great. [Madea and Larry] coming together was really awesome.”
One of the weightier issues this lighthearted family film addresses is interracial marriage. Perry says he wanted to show that love should be celebrated, regardless of color.
“I think it could be anybody, any couple, any situation,” he explains. “I wanted to talk about acceptance. Let people love who they love. as I think about it, I know that that goes both ways. It’s not just from one side that there’s resistance. Whatever the resistance is, it has no place. Let people love who they love.”