Tyler Perry fans are urging him to hire Black writers after he revealed on Twitter that he doesn’t utilize the common industry practice of writers rooms, instead, he writes all of his scripts on his own.
So, I don’t know if you know this, but all shows on television have a writers room,” Perry said in a post shared on Instagram and Twitter-showing a stack of scripts. “And, most of the time, there are 10 people or 12 or whatever that write on these television shows. Well, I have no writers room. Nobody writes any of my work. I write it all. Why am I telling you this? I wrote all of these scripts by myself in 2019. Work ethic!”
Many TP fans have been critical of his approach, noting that instead of bragging about his often lackluster and stereotypical narratives, he should flex his power by hiring Black writers who will add fresh perspectives to his characters.
Comedian Sampson replied to Perry’s post with, “Your Work ethic is GREAT. But there are definitely a lot of fantastic black writers who could use the opportunity and paycheck to work in a writers room with and for you.”
Twitter user @shaquaylamims added, “This is the one thing that burns about being a screenwriter in ATL. There’s a major studio here, black-owned and not one writer’s room. When we get to LA, we still have to come back to ATL to film. But that is OK. We will build our own table as well”
User Ace of Hearts noted, “friendly reminder that this man once fired writers bc they sought out union representation. he’s been [known] to not follow union rules. part of the reason he’s the sole writer on his projects is bc he’s not tryna pay other writers for their work….but, you know, “Black Excellence””
And user @BKryptonite09 wrote “He don’t care. He knows that no matter how poor the scripts are, black folk especially church folk will eat it up. I mean think about it. How many shows and movies of his are actually good. And if they are it’s more due to the actors making diamonds from coal.”
Another critic said, “…and here is the problem! Same script, different cast.”
“Writing that much in a short time frame makes sense as to why your writing can be dull or repetitive. If you weren’t going to hire and help other black creatives, what was the point of owning your own studio besides for show? Every great writer knows when to seek guidance,” wrote user @queenafroNAM.
What do you think of Perry’s seemingly shady work ethic? Sound off in the comments below.
Meanwhile, as reported by Complex, Perry’s Oprah Winfrey Network series, “Haves and Have Nots,” returns to TV for its seventh season on Tuesday. Later this month, his first movie to be released by Netflix drops, titled “A Fall From Grace.” The drama stars Crystal Fox and Phylicia Rashad.