In an incredibly detailed and personal interview with author and journalist Harriette Cole for AARP Magazine’s latest cover feature, Tyler Perry shed light on the intimate aspects of his career and personal life, providing a glimpse into his usually private history. He reflected on his past and his growth from poverty to powerhouse creative and payed homage to those who helped him along the way.
Upon meeting for the second time across a gap of eight years, Cole noted one thing that had not changed: Mr. Perry’s punctuality. Meeting at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, the old friends met to discuss everything from family to Tyler’s beginnings as a humble playwright to the release of his upcoming Netflix film, A Jazzman’s Blues. The conversation was all in reflection of AARP presenting Perry with an honorary AARP Purpose Prize Award for his leadership of The Perry Foundation. The award honors extraordinary people 50 and older who tap into the power of life experience to build a better future.
“I’ve tried to align myself with people who have the same sensibility when it comes to helping others,” Tyler notes. This sentiment has been present throughout his life as instilled in the lessons he learned from his mother, Maxine Perry, who always aimed to aid those in need. Tyler talks about his passion for building up his own community from within and cultivating opportunity through teamwork and collaboration. Whether with fellow celebrities like Oprah Winfrey or Cicely Tyson or the thousands of talented individuals who staff TPS today, Tyler honors the value of everyone he comes in contact with, allowing successful partnerships to blossom anywhere.
Click here to read more about Tyler Perry and the work that earned him the 2022 AARP Purpose Prize Award.
ALL PHOTOGRAPHY BY SHAYAN ASGHARNIA