Tyler Perry visited T.I.'s Expeditiously Podcast, where he opened up about the criticism he has faced over the years for wearing a dress whenever playing his character, Madea.
Years ago, comedian Dave Chappelle shared that he believes that the majority of Black male comedians and actors in Hollywood cannot truly make it big unless they put on a dress.
Perry shut down the rumors when speaking to T.I.
"Listen, Chappelle is one of the most brilliant people I have ever seen in my life. Not just in comedy but the man is smart -- a heavy, brilliant thinker. So, if that's the case in Hollywood, then, okay, that's the case. But you gotta understand, that's not my case," he said.
"Nobody owned that dress but me. Nobody told me -- a two-billion-dollar franchise. Nobody told me to put it on. Nobody makes me put it on. On stage, Black man owned the whole show. It was my choice. So, when I got to Hollywood and wanted to do Diary of a Mad Black Woman, it was my choice. Nineteen movies since then, it's been my choice."
And as for Madea?
"I'm not a man who enjoys wearing a dress. For me, an actor, it's a costume. It's like if somebody goes to work at Walmart, they put on their uniform. For me, that' s putting on a uniform, going out and making people laugh. Lifting them up. Encouraging them. The good that it does for so many people."