Tyler Perry is a history-making media mogul, but he says he understands why Hollywood doesn’t treat him as such.
“I clearly believe that I’m ignored in Hollywood, for sure,” Perry told Gayle King of “CBS This Morning” in an interview that aired Tuesday. “And that’s fine. I get it.”
Tyler Perry Studios, one of the largest in existence, opened last weekend in Atlanta.
The 330-acre complex contains 12 sound stages and is reportedly larger than the Burbank, California, lots owned by Warner Bros., Walt Disney Studios and Paramount studios combined.
Warner Bros. is owned by CNN’s parent company.
The actor/director/producer, who opened his first own studio in 2006, is the first African-American to own a major studio outright.
On Saturday, celebs such as Oprah Winfrey, Beyoncé, Jay-Z, Cicely Tyson, Sidney Poitier and director Ava DuVernay celebrated the opening of the complex. It sits on part of the decommissioned Fort McPherson that Perry bought in 2015.
“My audience and the stories that I tell are African-American, stories specific to a certain audience, specific to a certain group of people that I know, that I grew up with, and we speak a language,” Perry told King about being ignored by the mainstream movie industry.
“Hollywood doesn’t necessarily speak the language.” he said. “A lot of critics don’t speak that language. So, to them, it’s like, ‘What is this?’ “
Perry has racked up hundreds of millions of dollars in box office receipts for films like his Madea franchise, not to mention his TV shows and plays.
“I know what I do touches millions of people around the world,” Perry told King. “I know how important every word, every joke, every laugh [is]. I know what that does for the people where I come from and the people that I’m writing for.”
Perry said he has been on movie sets as recently as this year with no other minority representation.
“Every black person that comes to work here, they go, ‘Oh, my God, it’s heaven. Here we are. We’re represented,’ ” Perry said. “LGBTQs represented. Black, white, gay, straight, whatever. We’re all represented, working hand in hand, arm in arm.”