Tyler Perry is a household name in African American households and even though the majority of mainstream America still doesn’t quite know him, Hollywood most certainly does. Tyler Perry has had major successes as a writer, producer, director, playwright and actor. In all his endeavors, Perry’s first two films Dairy of a Mad Black Woman and Madea’s Family Reunion have grossed over $113 million in the U.S. and the combined sales of his nine DVDs has surpassed 11 million units. Meet The Browns starring the Oscar nominated Angela Bassett, now playing will hopefully follow this same path. This past year, Tyler Perry ventured into the broadcast arena which turned out to be another great success.
On January 30, 2008, Wayne Hubbard and Candice Price was on assignment at the National Association of Television Programming Executives, NATPE 2008 Conference and Exhibition at the Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas, were over 7500 Top Media Executives come together. These executives take the products such as Tyler Perry’s “House of Payne” and make major programming deals for television. Tyler Perry’s distribution partners are Co- Presidents Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein, of Debmar-Mercury which is a worldwide production and distribution media company specializing in network, cable, syndication, VOD/Pay-Per-View and Pay TV. Tyler’s advised choice of distribution partners was a very wise one, for these two savvy executives respect, enjoy and fully understand Tyler Perry and his audience. Tyler
Perry is very particular about who he does business with and how. He does not take for granted the value of his main target market, which is African American, Christian Women, nor the dollars that they bring. He believes whole heartedly about ownership and the control of his product and image. In doing business with Hollywood, which has often turned its nose up to Black product and audiences, Debmer-Mercury Co-Presidents Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein feel differently. Tyler Perry wanted to keep his control and ownership. Marcus and Bernstein negotiated for this along with handling his distribution. Tyler is great at his craft and they are wizard at theirs. Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein cut a phenomenon deal in regards to how the business of broadcast television traditionally works. Their deal was unheard of in the Broadcast world.
Normally a program gets picked up by a Major Broadcast Network and runs week after week. If the show succeeds without being cancelled it may make it to syndication on Cable or other networks. What happened with Tyler Perry’s “House of Payne” had never been done before. Tyler Perry had created ten episodes with his own money to do a test run on TBS last June. The ratings were remarkable for “House of Payne”, so Debmar Mercury was able to go in and cut the big dollar deal. Tyler was to create 100 episodes upfront to be broadcast on TBS and FOX stations for the next four years. In September 2008 the FOX stations will starts airing the show. Ira Bernstein said, “House of Payne” is the first originally produced syndicated comedy to ever launch with 100 episodes order. This is great for Independent Producers and distributors.” These guys genuinely respect and love working with Tyler Perry. Marcus and Bernstein have been in the business a long time and have made a lot of magic happen in the Industry, but they light up and enjoy the entire Tyler Perry experience. “What Tyler has done is totally way out of the box thinking” Bernstein said,” it is all the way out the box and we love it, Hollywood just doesn’t get this.” Hollywood may finally be getting something, for he has been cast in a good role in the New Star Trek movie franchised due out late this year. March 25, 2008,