First-look deal encompasses film, homevideo
Lionsgate has extended its first-look pact with Tyler Perry for film and homevid for at least two years, continuing a partnership that dates to 2005.The deal calls for Perry to deliver at least two more “Madea” movies, among other possible pics. Studio noted that Perry’s 10 films for Lionsgate over the past six years have grossed more than $520 million at the North American box office. His DVDs have sold more than 40 million units. The extension was announced Thursday by Lionsgate co-chairman and CEO Jon Feltheimer and Perry. Lionsgate is already releasing “Madea’s Big Happy Family” on April 22 and the upcoming comedy “We the Peeples,” which Perry produced. The deal includes an option of additional films with Perry attached as a producer, writer, director and/or star to be made in conjunction with Perry’s Atlanta-based production companies 34th Street Films, Very Perry Films, and Tyler Perry Studios. “Tyler Perry is one of the most powerful and unique entertainment brands in the world today, with a fan base that is virtually unrivalled in its loyalty and passion,” Felt-heimer said. “Lionsgate and Tyler have grown together for many years, and we look forward to pushing the envelopes of our businesses together for many years to come.” Perry’s debut play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed” was performed first in 1992. He bowed the Madea character in 2000’s play “I Can Do Bad all by Myself,” leading to 2005’s “Diary of a Mad Black Woman.” Perry followed with “Madea’s Family Reunion,” “Daddy’s Little Girls,” “Why Did I Get Married?,” “Meet the Browns,” “The Family That Preys,” “I Can Do Bad all by Myself,” “Why Did I Get Married Too?” and “For Colored Girls.” “Together, Lionsgate and I have built the ideal filmmaker/studio relationship, and I’m thrilled that it will be continuing. We share an entrepreneurial spirit and have a great business rapport,” Perry said Thursday. “But more importantly, Lionsgate has been incredibly affirming of my relationship with my audience.” Perry also produces the TV series “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne” and “Meet The Browns” for TBS and first-run syndication. Both skeins are distribbed by Lionsgate’s Debmar-Mercury syndication arm. The pact was negotiated by Perry’s reps at WME and attorney Matt Johnson of Ziffren Brittenham.