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“When Black women are down with you and in your corner, you have an ally that will move heaven and earth…” –Tyler Perry

Rising past the haters — and the sheer desolation of losing his beloved mother — Tyler Perry has only just begun to soar. Respected as a writer, director and mogul, the man behind the $1 billion-plus Madea franchise is now moving into unchartered territory: action hero.

ESSENCE goes along for the ride as the tireless entrepreneur and philanthropist talks about his love for Black women, one of his last conversations with Whitney Houston the night Michael Jackson died and what intimidated him the most about taking on the role of detective, Alex Cross.

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Tyler Perry Graces The November Issue Of ESSENCE  was originally published on

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