Trending Topics

Six Times Tyler Perry Showered People with Expensive Gifts. Why the Filmmaker Once Paid Cicely Tyson $1 Million for One Day of Work

Do-gooder Tyler Perry is the gift that keeps on giving. Forbes declared the 52-year-old filmmaker as one of the highest-paid entertainers of 2022, pulling in $165 million annually, and he made the Forbes billionaire list in January 2022. But he seems to share his wealth with others.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 22: Tyler Perry visits SiriusXM Studios on September 22, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)

The “Madea” creator has written, directed, and produced over 50 series and films and dozens of plays. He went from being homeless and living in a shelter to becoming a household name in the film industry. The philanthropist also regularly digs into his pocket to support national and local causes such as the NAACP and others through his Perry Foundation. But some of his other generous gifts go to his cast and crew members.

Here are six ways Tyler Perry has showered his employees with valuable and extravagant gifts.

1. Tyler Perry Paid Cicely Tyson $1 Million for a Single Day of Work

Perry had a tremendous amount of love and adoration for the late actress Cicely Tyson before her passing in January 2021. The two have worked together on a few of Perry’s movies such as “A Fall from Grace,” Madea’s Family Reunion,” “Diary of a Mad Black Woman,” and “Alex Cross.” Perry paid her $1 million for one day of filming for one of his most popular films “Why Did I Get Married?”

“I wanted to make sure she knew that there were people who valued her,” He told AARP The Magazine in August. “So, she did one day of work on my 2007 film ‘Why Did I Get Married?’ I paid her a million dollars.”

Perry’s story seemingly was verified in the memoir Tyson released before her death, “Just As I Am.”

2. The Emmy-Winning Filmmaker Left Restaurant Employees a $21,000 Tip

Perry helped someone else’s employees at the peak of the pandemic when thousands of restaurants and establishments shut down. According to reports, he has been a regular at Houston’s Restaurant in Atlanta since his days sleeping in a shelter. In April 2020, 42 servers at the Atlanta restaurant benefited from his hefty $21,000 tip. They received $500 each.

3. The Media Mogul Paid Taraji P. Henson What She’s Worth

Back In 2019, Taraji P. Henson opened up about her struggle to land high-paying gigs earlier in her career. The Golden Globe actress revealed she was only paid $150,000 for “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” while her co-stars made millions. She credits Perry as the first person to see her value and pay her what she’s truly worth. 

“That is what I was asking for. I wasn’t a greedy person. I understood the game, I know that I can’t make as much as a certain person that’s been in the game longer than me, has proven box office success,” she explained while appearing on “The Real.” 

The former “Empire” star said Perry agreed to pay her $500,000 to star in “I Can Do Bad All By Myself.”

“I am proving myself still, but at the same time, I’m not going to belittle myself, my talent, and my worth. I know that I can at least bring you $500,000 in ticket sales, if not more.”

4. Atlanta-based Director Bought a House For His Former Employee

Actress LaShun Pace worked on Perry’s 1999 play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed.” The gospel singer is also a member of “The Anointed Pace Sisters,” whose song was featured in his 2006 film, “Madea’s Family Reunion.”

Perry and Pace kept in touch over the years and he was devastated to her learn her mother, Bettie Pace, was terminally ill in 2018. 

To pay homage, the “Madea” creator granted her last dying wish to become a homeowner. He blessed her with a $350,000 house in Atlanta near where the Pace family grew up. Sadly, LaShun Pace passed away in March of this year at 60. 

5. The Black Billionaire Gifted an Employee a Collection of Designer Bags

Earlier this month, Perry gifted his former stylist Crystal Renee nearly two dozen designer handbags for her 41st birthday. The actress stars in Perry’s hit series “Sistas” on BET and “Zatima” on BET+.

Renee’s purse collection included a variety of colors and styles from Balenciaga and Yves Saint Laurent, as well as Louis Vuitton’s OnTheGo tote bag, which cost $3,250. 

6. The Production Powerhouse Threw A Party For His Well-Paid Staff

Renee attended Perry’s Juneteenth bash earlier this year, where Usher, H.E.R., Fantasia, and more performed for hundreds. Pictures and video footage from the star-studded event held at Perry’s 330-acre production studio in Atlanta were shared on Instagram. Perry explained that the celebratory night was to honor his cast and team members for their hard work within the company. 

“On this Juneteenth, I threw a party for all the incredible people that work at Tyler Perry Studios,” he wrote on Instagram. “I wanted to celebrate the accomplishment that these amazing people have all achieved. My payroll alone was $154 million, and that money went to all the people in this crowd.”

Back to top