Tyler Perry’s Casting Failure

I have been critical of Tyler Perry before on this very blog so you should not be surprised that I have something to say about his recent casting of Kim Kardashian in his new movie the Marriage Counselor.  A news commentator who is not a fan of Perry said Perry is a below average writer, director, etc but the one thing he does exceptionally well is marketing.  Perry will have every 30+ black woman in America marching to the theaters on opening weekend to pay their ten dollars to watch his latest assembly line produced film.   He has a built in audience that just needs to see his name affiliated with a movie to head to the theater.  Casting Kim Kardashian may be one of the first marketing failures of Tyler Perry’s career.

Here are the problems I see with casting Kim in the movie.  Lets start with the fact that she cannot act.  I admit that I watch the Kardashians shows.  In fact I wasted four hours of my life watching the mess that was her wedding special.  Kim couldn’t even “act” like she really liked the guy!   Casting a non-actress only adds to the critiques of his movies.  Some could say he is clearly not about making a good product or else who would have found another person preferably a real actress to play this role.  It is a movie, a persons ability to act should be paramount.  I will not go as far as others and say that he should have hired a black woman actress for the role, he may have been looking for a little diversity.   May I suggest another young white actress and not a reality star?  They do exist.

Well then I thought you know Tyler Perry is about marketing as I said before that is really what he was good at!  Casting Kim was a marketing ploy.  But wait, Tyler Perry your market is older black women who absolutely loathe Kim Kardashian.  Kim generally only dates black men, including top athletes such as Reggie Bush.   African American women do not take well to women of different races “taking” their men particularly successful African American men.   Kim has also been known for large behind.  Black women are known for having larger butts and I know that many were not fans of Kim receiving so much attention for hers as if black women have not possessed the same feature for centuries.   Then as with most Americans, black women are still confused about why she and the rest of her family are famous.   All this adds up to a strong dislike for Kim Kardashian.  We have all heard the phrase do not bite the hand that feeds you.  With one casting decision Perry did just that.   Making a casting decision that isolates Middle-aged black women is insane.   For example Denzel Washington refused to have a love scene with a white woman because he knew the core group of his fans were African American women and they would not take well to that scene.  Those in Hollywood work hard not to disconnect from their audience but Perry seemed to take them for granted.  I understand wanting to expand your audience but don’t step on those who have been there from the beginning to do so.  It may be too soon to say this but this could feasibly be the downfall of his built in audience.

Perry’s core audience have been very vocal about their dislike for Kim Kardashian’s casting so much so that Tyler Perry had to respond.   I read his response letter and well it only made me mad.   He starts off with what I perceive as a stereotypical dig at Black women, his core audience, but I’ll leave that alone.  He emphasizes that young people need to see this movie.  I cannot imagine what life-changing thing Perry is putting in his movie that young people need to see but I digress.   He adds that in order to pull young people he added Kim Kardashian because young people follow her by the millions.  Sighs…  Mr. Perry young people follow a lot of people like Lil Wayne but that does not make it right!  This letter essentially puts a rubber stamp on Kim as a role model!  You are telling young Americans, presumably African Americans hey I know you look up to the woman with the sex tape, large behind, 10 pounds of makeup, extensively worked on face, and 72 day marriage so I am going to put her in an inspiring movie for you to see.  This makes NO sense!!!  Why is anyone encouraging people to look up to Kim Kardashian? That is what is happening here and I cannot agree with it.  If my little sister told me she wanted to be just like Kim Kardashian when she grew up I would give her a MAJOR side-eye!  So what young people follow her in droves?  Put a real role model in your film, someone they really should look up to if that is your goal.

I look forward to see how this casting decision plays out.  I do not think Perry will back away from the decision and with contracts already signed Kim Kardashian will be in this movie without a doubt.  I have to add that this is really beginning to feel more and more like Tyler Perry’s top priority is to make money and not produce a good Christian product for black audiences as he has claimed.  His decision here though may result in him making less.

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9 thoughts on “Tyler Perry’s Casting Failure

  1. I think Tyler Perry gets a big F, for casting Kim K. I’m actually a fan of his movies. I’m not always looking for a deep intellectual movie. For example, the Wayans brothers made millions with their scary movie series. I can’t say they are necessarily good producers, etc. So Tyler Perry’s fan based may not be flocking to the theater now but maybe to the bootleg man…LOL

  2. erikastruth says:

    It was funny I saw someone post, I won’t even go see this on bootleg on a gossip site. I thought was really funny because they know they will! LOL I think it would be good if they protest just so they can somewhat humble Tyler and let him know that he cannot take his audience for granted. It might what he needs to grow as a writer producer etc.

  3. I am generally not a fan of any of Tyler Perry’s movies, because I feel they are overly stereotypical and trite. Each movie is EXACTLY the same. I am curious what the subject of this movie is. Is it possibly any different than his other fifteen (a slight exaggeration, but probably not too far off) movies? I was confused when I heard that he was casting Kim Kardashian, because like you said she is a horrible actress and his core audience will likely not relate to her at all. I can’t even see how she will fit in with the other characters. It will be interesting to see what the box office sales for this movie are. Will his loyal fans still go see it despite the cast? Or will they take a stand and not go see the movie, which will hurt his profits and possibly his reputation. Depending on the reviews and audience response, this movie could hurt Kim Kardashian’s career as well because it will show her lack of ability and range. Tyler Perry definitely did not show good judgement with this one. The headlines about Kim’s divorce may hurt his profits even more. The majority of people think she is irresponsible, attention-grabbing, frivolous and a number of other things. I’ll admit, I watch her shows as well, because they are entertaining, but I would not be interested in watching her in a two-hour movie. But then again, I could be wrong. Kim could blow everyone away with her acting chops…but probably not 🙂 Tyler Perry would have been better off casting Khloe! Ha

  4. erikastruth says:

    I meant to mention the headlines as well. He decision to cast her made headlines and likely the worst point in her career at a time where others were questioning whether we should quit buying into this Kardashian machine.

    But as you mentioned I like alienating his core audience is the worst aspect of this. He tried to draw a younger audience but I think he may have been a little ambitious.

    Oh and the movie is called Marriage Counselor. From the stuff I’ve read it seems as if they took Janet Jackson’s character from Why Did I Get Married and made it into a solo movie. Kim is suppose to help the girl with her self esteem or something. I can think of many other fashionable young actress who could do this. Like any of the girls on Gossip girl. Or even other reality stars like Lauren Conrad. It’s all a big mess.

  5. Agreed. Well, I guess only time will tell what the results will be.

  6. Jessica Neal says:

    I’ve always wanted to support Tyler Perry because he’s one of few that even try to cater to African American filmgoers, but lately he seems like he’s going from bad to worse. I read his letter to his fans and I was very offended. When he made that stereotypical comment about women talking off their earrings, I was appalled! He’s degrading his very core audience- and for what? Kim Kardashian? Tyler Perry knows what he’s doing, he trying to reach another demographic that Kim has wrapped around her finger. Her “millions” of fans will support everything she does- especially a feature film. To be honest, even though I disagreed with Kim’s casting, I intended to see “The Marriage Consuelor”. After his comments today, I’m rethinking it. While I knew he was not going to apologize for casting Kim, I would have liked for him to handle his fans concerns more delicately. Tyler Perry thinks he has a monopoly on movies for black filmgoers, it would be nice for him to see that we are not so easily persuaded. If filmgoers hit him where it hurts- his pockets- I’m sure he would think twice about going for the “popular” choices.

    • erikastruth says:

      Awww it’s Mrs. Neal! 🙂 Jurnee Smollett is the star of the movie and I love her! I might have gone to see that one just because of her but I feel like if I spend my money then it’s like I legitimatize her as well as something more than reality show star too. And I completely agree I can’t way to see how this turns out honestly because his letter to me illustrates that he is taking his audience for granted.

      • Jessica Neal says:

        Lol! I still forget and say Webb a lot! Yea, I really like Jurnee Smollett too and I’m grateful she has a starring role, that’s why I’m torn. I liked what Holly Robinson Peete said, she said blacktresses depend on people like Tyler Perry because Hollywood isn’t giving them any love. On the one hand, that’s why I would like to support Tyler Perry. On the other hand, I think he’s sacrificing quality and relying on gimmicks just to get a movies out twice a year.

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