Tyler Perry says adapting ‘For Colored Girls’ was about ‘surrender’

10.25.10 7 years ago

There is something interesting going on with the early reviews for Tyler Perry’s “For Colored Girls.”  The adaptation of Ntozake Shange’s play is the first picture Perry has directed that’s not based on his own source material. It’s his most challenging work to date and features stellar turns from Kimberly Elise, Thandie Newton and Phylicia Rashad among others.  But will the critics give Perry’s latest a fair shot?  We’re not so sure.  But more on that later… 

In the meantime, HitFix’s Katie Hasty had a chance to talk to Perry along with two of his stars, Anika Noni Rose and Phylicia Rashad last week in New York and the multi-hyphenate had a lot to say.

Perry says his work on “Colored Girls” is all about “surrender. It’s someone else’s baby.  It’s someone else’s child. So, I had to be very careful and very respectful of her and the great thing about being able to do an adaptation with someone who is alive is they can help you.  So, I would write a draft and get her notes and then write another draft and send it to her and get her notes. I did three drafts for this film and got notes after notes after notes to become what it is.”

And as for finding his ensemble, which also includes Janet Jackson, Kerry Washington, Loretta Divine and Whoopi Goldberg, Perry admits he didn’t find them all immediately.

“As I’m writing I can usually see the person that I want,” Perry says. “And I got 50 % of who I wanted in the film, the other 50% came later and it’s celebration time because they all did such a great job.”

You can watch the interviews with all three embedded in this page.

“For Colored Girls” opens nationwide on Nov. 5.

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