Monday, October 6, 2008


History was made Saturday night, when 39-year-old Tyler Perry became the first African-American ever to launch his own major TV and film studio. The sprawling complex, which includes more than 200,000 square feet of studio and office space and sits on 30 acres that once housed Delta Air Lines' finance, reservation and computer center. Perry will shoot his TBS sitcoms House of Payne and Meet the Browns along with other film projects at the studio, reports the Associated Press. At one point, Perry unveiled a special surprise for veteran trailblazers Sidney Poitier, Ruby Dee and Cicely Tyson: each actor has one out of five studio soundstages named after him and her. "Is this my wall?" joked Poitier – as Winfrey dissolved into tears. "I spent 56 years making movies and this is the reward that I have that means the most to me," said Poitier, 81, the first African-American to win a Best Actor Oscar, for 1963's Lilies of the Field. The fourth soundstage will be named after Quincy Jones while the fifth is still unnamed.

A New Orleans native with a troubled childhood, Perry, credited all of his guests with inspiring his life. Of Winfrey, who attended the celebration with longtime beau Stedman Graham and best friend Gayle King, Perry said, "She owns her life. I am learning that. I never would have shown this to people a few years ago. I was embarrassed by the success." As a large cast of attendants passed around champagne and tissues for the teary-eyed (who were many), Perry shared his rags-to-riches story over a large video screen that eventually gave way to a live singer and band delivering The Impossible Dream, followed by a fireworks display. Mary J. Blige, Patti Labelle and Gladys Knight also treated guests to separate performances. Will Smith, also in attendance, tipped his hat to Perry who was accompanied by his girlfriend and model, Gelila Bekele. "I admire most that he can be that tall and wear a white suit," said Smith, 40, never to waste a punch line. "I usually have to avoid white. At this height, you don't tend to look sexy in white suits, but he pulled it off." All joking aside, it was Will Smith who best summed up Perry's accomplishment and the tide of change taking place in America today. "This is an American first, and the first in the universe," said the I Am Legend star. "There is something happening in America and in the world that's powerful. He is not letting anyone get in his way. Those are the wonderfully naïve, arrogant, humble, powerfully American concepts that make things powerful in this country. It's big."

Other celebrities in attendance included: David and Tamela Mann, Lamman Rucker, Tracey Edmonds, music mogul L.A. Reid (with his wife Erica), singer John Legend, America's Next Top Model winner Eva Pigford, with actor/boyfriend Lance Gross, Barry Bonds, Debbie Allen (with her daughter), Tasha Smith, Malk Yoba, Michael Jai White, Louis Gossett, Jr., Holly Robinson Peete (with her mother), Gary Sturges, Kirk Franklin (and his wife), Star Jones Reynolds, Nick Ashford and wife Valerie Simpson, Lynn Whitfield, Derek Luke, Jenifer Lewis, Cassi Davis, Boris Kodjoe and wife Nicole Ari Parker, Denise Laughton, Wesley Jonathan, Kimberly Elise, Terri J. Vaughn, Tom Joyner's wife, Donna Richardson, Allen Payne, LaVan Davis and many more.




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Jace said...

Tyler's girlfriend is BEAU-TI-FUL! Damn that's a fine chick! What she doing with Tyler? LOL! Just jokes. Kinda.

Anonymous said...

'Mr. Brown' cleans up well.

FAMUDiva said...

There ain't nothing like seeing a bunch of beautiful black people in such a beautiful setting on such a historical evening. I wish I was there! So, ummm, is it safe to assume that Lamman will be living in the ATL seeing as though 'Meet the Browns' will be taping at Tyler's ATL studios? That is safe to assume right? Because ironically, I've gotten some job offers up there.


KappaChino said...

Yeah and its also safe to assume that he has another woman on his arm that ironically ain't you and never will be! Guess U just overlooked that, right?


ChocolateCocaine said...

Wow. The writers who picketed this event didn't put a damper on it at all. Not surprised one bit though. As if people like Oprah, Sidney and Patti were going to walk the other way.

Anonymous said...

Yall off the chain this morning! lmao

FAMUDiva said...

Kap, you know you can kiss my ass until your country ass cows come home, right? Ooops! Let me stop talking about your mama and your sisters before you get mad! Now go and 'Bwahahahahahahhaahahaha!' on that.

Oshyn said...

What's going on in those pics of Uncle Curtis and Aunt Ella? How short is she? And why does Uncle Curtis look like he's about to bust out of his suit?

Last but not least what in the holy hell is this? cause she just wrong all the way around. I thought wearing black was supposed to make you look a little bit slimmer.

Oshyn said...

edited to add: and why is sidney looking at ashford and simpson like 'who the hell are yall?'

Mommy2Be said...

Here are my favorites--

--Nicole and Boris (loving the hair and facial expression. Flawless. Then to have a fine man like Boris on your arm while you wearing his ring? Priceless!)

--TP's 'girlfriend'. You sure bout that SG? N E way. That doesn't negate the fact that she is gorgeous. Love the simplicity of her dress. Hair: perfect.

--The Manns. It's a relief to know that David's style no way, no how parallels the style of his alter ego Leroy Brown. His wife is equally as beautiful.

--Derek Luke and his wife: stunning.

--Lance and Eva. Let's just say I'm truly hating on her right now. LOL

--'Made from Korea' aka Denise Laughton and her man Wesley or Jonathan. I always forget! They're looking A-list right about now.

My 'What were they thinking?'

--The Wanda lady? Come on now. What is really going on?

--Not feeling LA Reid's wife's 1920s hairdo.

--Did someone forget to tell Lamman that all the guest were supposed to wear Black so that Tyler could stand out in his white Easter suit? U loose cool points for that one Lamman for not following directions. U still sexy though. But could your girl look any more Jane Plain-ish?

--Speaking of Tyler's Easter/Communion suit. I love you like a play cousin, but, why, Tyler?

--Ashford and Simpson. I'm used to seeing them looking a mess. However I thought and hoped they would have glammed themselves up a bit more seeing as though this was a historic occasion. They still stuck in the 80s I see.

If I offended anyone, charge it to my pregnancy hormones. LOL!

FAMUDiva said...

I said I wasn't going to ask, especially since 'I don't know if I'm a boy or a girl' aka 'Chino has a way with working my nerves. Your gender confused ass gon learn to stop messing with me on Monday mornings.

ANYWAY. It's gotten the better of me and SGurl I have to know who's the busty, lame, random chick on Lamman's arm? Yes, I said lame. After looking at that close-up shot of him and her, I noticed that she so does not look like his type. At all. She looks like he owed her a favor and taking her to this party was it. I ain't hating or nothing like that, but I know I ain't the only person thinking this. Somebody else out there is feeling me. I just know it. LMAO at her wearing those silver shoes to match his silver suit.

So who is she? And should we Lamman fans be concerned? I need to know before I make my next move. *wink, wink*

And Mommy2B, yes he was wronger than wrong to wear that silver/gray suit! ROTF!

Mem Marie said...


SouthernGurl said...

Sorry FamuDiva I have no idea whatsoever who the lady is with him. And the couple of people that I know who also know him personally don't know who she is either! LOL!

Mommy To Be said she looks Jane Plain-ish. If that's the case, it's good to know that he's attracted to that type of woman. Who knows? Maybe one day you could be that Plain Jane on his arm! And Lord knows I don't mean that in a bad way, so please have mercy on me and don't curse me out for making that comment! LOL!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures. I wish I had been there too!! Tyler making history. That is so a good look.

SouthernGurl said...

Hey FamuDiva. I found out that Lamman's girl name is Kelly. Hope this helps you in any kind of way....although I'm not sure if it could! LOL!! But hey, look on the bright side: at least she's not wearing an engagement ring on her finger so you still may have a chance once he discover that you actually exist! LOL! Just jokes, gurl. Please don't e-curse me out. :)

FAMUDiva said...

Now SG, you know I'd never hurt you!!! I can't harm the source of all my Lamman posts and updates. That would be like cutting off my nose to spite my face!!!

So her name is Kelly huh? Still doesn't excuse the fact that she doesn't compliment his swagger. She really should have glammed herself up a bit more. Talk about downgrading. He looked better with Jill Scott.

SouthernGurl said...

Alright FD. You my gurl and all but you gotta let this shit go. It ain't natural and you're starting to spook me the hell out! LOL!

KappaChino said...

SouthernGurl I don't know why U continue 2 deal wit her. I been done told you that her elevator doesn't go up to the top floor! lol

BTW those pictures of TP crying---what was that all about?

kingTruth said...

Kappa I was wondering about that too. What was going on or what was being said to make them looks as if they were going to break down. Must've been something real profound

I almost started crying when I looked at these pics. I am so happy for him and proud of him. this man went from being homeless to making history. You can't tell him nothing!! People hate on Tyler so much but you gotta give the man his props for all he has done for us. I know he fired those workers but there are two sides to every story. The truth will prevail soon enough. I read on your other site that those writers were fired because of the quality or lack thereof of their work. I guess this situation is kinda like a double edge sword. Do we blast Tyler for not giving his writers what they deserved OR do we pay them no nevermind since out of all of his writers, only 4 were fired.

Whatever the case may be, Tyler Perry keeps black people employed and for that reason alone I admire and appreciate him.

Congrats Tyler on your success brother. And keep your head up homie.

angel73 said...

This was a nice and beautiful awarding event for Tyler. My son performed there with the Boys Choir of Tallahassee, but no pictures were shown. That's sad! Well, I can say he got a chance to see alot of celebraties and this was a life time experience.

SouthernGurl said...

Angel73, can you email me your email address, please?

lincolnperry said...

Thanks for posting this, there has been alot of hate outside of Atlanta, specially with the screenwriters protest!

Anonymous said...

I remember seeing Lammon with this girl earlier this year in the DC area and she was not this busty. Now either she's had a baby, or someone got a little "silly"cone put in. Nor was her hair that long. Oh well, if he likes plastic, I hope he has enough cash on his plastic to upkeep her later on.

Sam Jackson said...

W H A T A B O U T N E W M E L I N I U M S T U D I O S ?


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