Tuesday, 8 October 2019


On October 5, 2019, Tyler Perry made history as he opened the doors to his Studios in Atlanta which made him the first African-American to own one.

The opening of the studio which is located on over 330 acres of what was once a Confederate army base, had every bold-faced name in Black Hollywood in attendance. Guests entered the studio by walking on a purple carpet, which was just one of the beautifully resonant touches.

Until the early hours of Sunday morning, Black Hollywood royalty mixed and mingled with a guest list that included music superstars Ludacris, T.I., Usher, Diddy and Jay-Z (whose DeLeon tequila, Ciroc vodka and Ace of Spades champagne respectively were featured at the bars inside the venue); politicians like former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, Rep. Maxine Waters, Rep. John Lewis, and President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton; media figures CBS’s Gayle King, CNN’s Don Lemon, Tamron Hall and “The View’s“ Sunny Hostin; and award-winning creators Viola Davis, Samuel L. Jackson, Debbie Allen, Phylicia Rashad, David Oyelowo and Ava DuVernay.

The gala began with a cocktail which lasted for about an hour in the John Singleton soundstage, followed by opening remarks from Perry and a powerhouse performance by Jennifer Hudson which left guests in tears.

Perry surprised some of his guests and some of his collaborators including Tika Sumpter and Keshia Knight Pulliam by unveiling stars dedicated to them on his own Walk of Fame, similar to the one he received earlier in the week on Hollywood Blvd in Los Angeles.

 Official photos from Tyler Perry Studios

As the three-course seated dinner was served inside the Oprah Winfrey soundstage, the buzz from guests shifted from gushing over meeting Smith or the Clintons outside to whispers that BeyoncĂ© had arrived. Knowles-Carter’s Destiny’s Child sisters Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams (as well as her mother Tina Knowles Lawson) also attended. After dinner, Mary J. Blige took the stage for a 30 minute set with stars like Haddish, Chris Tucker and Taraji P. Henson dancing along to the private concert.

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