Tyler Perry has inked a multi-year deal with Viacom that includes a first-look deal with Paramount Pictures and producing original content for BET.
His film agreement is effective immediately, but the television deal will kick in May 2019 after Perry’s exclusive agreement with Oprah Winfrey’s OWN expires. As Perry exits the network, Winfrey is bringing in Will Packer (“Girls Trip”) to produce innovate and original content.
The shakeup has many wondering if the rumors are true that Oprah and Tyler had a falling out.
As Love B. Scott reports, back in March 2016, it was rumored that Oprah and Tyler’s relationship soured because Perry refused to accept Oprah’s creative suggestions for his shows.
“When Tyler first bought his shows to OWN in 2012, it was a love affair between the two of them,” a source said. “Oprah was very involved in watching Tyler develop them creatively, and they even shot promos together with her as Miss Sophia from The Color Purple and him as Madea. But that relationship has soured in the last six months because Oprah finds Tyler difficult to work with and he doesn’t take constructive criticism well at all.”
Winfrey’s BFF, Gayle King, dismissed the rumors and in October 2016, Tyler spoke highly of Oprah during an appearance on “Watch What Happens Live.”
“Can you please address the rumors that you and Oprah are feuding,” host Andy Cohen asked on behalf of a viewer, adding that Tyler “has, like, eight shows on OWN.”
“There’s nothing to address. Oprah and I are very, very happy. We were just on the phone before I came here. She’s sitting under the oaks reading books and we’re talking, laughing on the phone. There’s no truth to any of that. She’s sitting under the oaks. Literally. That’s what she loves to do. Sit under the oaks in her yard. In her massive yard.”
Earlier this year, it was announced that Oprah and Tyler will team on an animated film called “The Star,” but the two media moguls haven’t been photoed together in quite some time since.
Meanwhile, of his Viacom deal, Perry said in a statement: Viacom has a rich tradition of reaching my audience through their TV, film and digital platforms and I am excited to partner with them. I am eager to have one home where I can leverage all of their assets to tell my stories to an even wider audience. I have been very blessed to have worked with the incredible people at Lionsgate and OWN over the last few years and I look forward to continuing my work with them on a non-exclusive basis.”
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