As far as Spike Lee‘s former criticism of some of his characters where he referred to them as “coonery and buffoonery,” Tyler says that his critique in particular kind of hurt.
Despite this, he still named one of the soundstages on his Tyler Perry Studios lot after the filmmaker: “If any criticisms stung, it would have been his, because I had so much respect and admiration for him. People’s opinions are their opinions, but that doesn’t negate the fact of the work that he’s done. And he’s due the honor of having a stage named after him and more than that.”
Tyler continues and explains that Spike Lee actually reached out to him following an interview Tyler had with another media mogul, Oprah Winfrey, where they discussed a feud similar to theirs between Harlem Renaissance writers Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston. Tyler says Spike decided to come to Atlanta to speak with him directly:
“I opened the door. I said, ‘Come in here, so I can beat your ass.’ And [Lee] said, ‘Fair enough.’ And we sat and we had a conversation. … He laid out his views and his opinions, which I respected. And he heard mine, and he respected them. So we can both exist in the same world with very different …”
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