With the release of A Madea Family Funeral, audiences are waving a last goodbye to Tyler Perry as his longtime alter-ego. That doesn’t mean the character can’t still live on in the future, or rather the past. Perry recently said he’s interested in working on a Madea prequel. In his words:
That's an idea that I'm thinking of doing. Letting it go back to the seventies and seeing an actress actually play her in that time.
This is a great idea! While Tyler Perry has expressed little regret about throwing out his wig and glasses following a recent final sendoff for his iconic role, Mabel “Madea” Simmons, he wouldn’t mind passing it down to a younger actress to explore the character’s roots.
Tyler Perry didn’t have a specific actress to throw out, though he did tell Entertainment Tonight he has a few in mind, though he didn't say who. I'll throw a couple to get these casting idea juices flowing: what about the star of his recent comedy, Nobody’s Fool – Tiffany Haddish? The actress is certainly one of the most popular black female comedic actress working today following her roles in Girls Trip, Uncle Drew, Night School and The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part.
Raven-Symoné might also be a good pick for a younger Madea and a marvelous comeback to her beginnings in comedy in Disney Channel’s That’s So Raven. There are certainly many other actresses who could take on the role and bring new life into the character that perhaps Tyler Perry no longer wishes to after giving two decades to Madea.
Tyler Perry said he has decided to bid farewell to Madea because he’s soon inching on 50 years old and doesn’t wish to be the same age and play her. He debuted the role in 1999 for his play I Can Do Bad All By Myself before the character had her first big screen outing in 2005’s Diary of a Mad Black Woman.
A Madea Family Funeral which debuted last Friday to $27 million in opening weekend box office earnings, marks the character’s eleventh film. While the film is making way more money than expected, it could not beat out the trilogy-closer for the How To Train Your Dragon films, The Hidden World, which has already made over $99 million domestically in less than two weeks.
The latest and last Madea adventure starring Tyler Perry has, however, been met with low reviews from both critics and audiences alike. CinemaBlend’s very own Corey Chichizola gave the film one lonely star in his review, calling it "a shame that Madea didn’t leave the film world under better circumstances." Rotten Tomatoes’ audience score closely shares this sentiment as just 34% said they liked it – the lowest score for the franchise.
A Madea Family Funeral is in theaters now. Do you want to see an actress take on a younger Madea? Who would you cast to replace Tyler Perry’s alter-ego? Sound off in the comments below.