Thursday, March 16, 2006

Big news on Tyler Perry

How can Howard Stern call himself the king of all media with a straight face? Especially when compared to the seemingly omnipotent and still rising Tyler Perry.

Today from Lionsgate comes word on Perry's next big-screen project, "Daddy's Little Girl." It's described as a reverse Cinderella ("Cinderfella") tale about a young, beautiful, successful female attorney who falls in love with a janitor and single father of three daughters. Despite strong objections from the attorney's father, love, of course, triumphs in the end.

Without the presence of Perry himself I'd run screaming from such a story, but with him in control I'll keep the faith. Even though, horror of all horrors, pistol-packing grannie Madea apparently won't be making an appearance in this new flick.

The film has been fast-tracked for a June start and like "Madea's Family Reunion" and "Diary of a Mad Black Woman" is set for a February release.

Never one to stop and smell the roses, Perry is also busy on other fronts. Next month, he will release his first book, "Don't Make a Black Woman Take Off Her Earrings: Madea's Uninhibited Commentaries on Life and Love." Brace for the requisite Oprah onslaught, but at least this should be one she shouldn't have to apologize for.

Perry has also recently inked a deal to distribute his TV series "House of Payne" in first-run syndication.

Whew. I get tired just thinking about all that, but it should be fun.

Lionsgate is enjoying a well-deserved payoff from its realization that black people don't always have to play pushers and hos. Coming at the end of April is "Akeelah and the Bee," starring the much-missed Laurence Fishburne as a teacher who inspires a promising young girl to compete in the National Spelling Bee.

I love the drama of a good spelling bee, and the trailer for this one looks pretty good to me. Decide for yourself here.

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