Co-Presidents, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, Sheri Salata (L) and Erik Logan speak onstage during the OWN portion of the 2013 Winter TCA Tour- Day 2 at Langham Hotel on January 5, 2013 in Pasadena, California
*OWN co-presidents Sheri Salata and Erik Logan discussed a number of new programs for the network during its presentation this morning at the Television Critics Association press tour in Pasadena.
As previously reported, Tyler Perry will deliver another scripted series to OWN – this one about moms who ban together to tackle life’s challenges – large and small.
“Single Moms Club,” based on Perry’s forthcoming feature film of the same name, will premiere in the fall as an hourlong drama. It centers on a group of single mothers from different backgrounds who are brought together by an incident at their children’s school. They form a support group that helps them find humor in life’s turmoil, and inner strength to overcome their personal challenges.
*Tyler Perry’s deal with Oprah Winfrey’s OWN, announced two months ago, calls for the filmmaker to write, direct and executive produce two series for a mid-2013 premiere.
Today, the two shows were announced: a drama titled “The Haves And The Have Nots” and a sitcom called “Love Thy Neighbor,” both from his production company Tyler Perry Studios, the network confirmed.
“Haves” will be Perry’s first small screen foray into drama after churning out sitcoms “House Of Payne,” “Meet The Browns” and “For Better Or Worse” on TBS.
“The Haves And The Have Nots” focuses on two families – the affluent Cryer family and the impoverished family of their housekeeper Hanna – and the challenges and skeletons that lurk within both families.
“Love Thy Neighbor” is about the food, laughs and lessons always available at Love’s Diner.
With his TV hustle now just as strong as his motion picture and theater game – not to mention Perry was 2011’s Highest Paid Man in Entertainment,” the 43-year-old New Orleans native is now legitimately referred to as an “entertainment mogul.” Below, Perry says he’s not tripping over the “mogul” title, he just wants to be the next Norman Lear (the great TV producer behind such classic shows as “All in the Family,” “Sanford and Son,” ‘One Day at a Time,” “The Jeffersons,””Good Times” and “Maude”).
A fire broke out on the roof of Tyler Perry studios in southwest Atlanta on Monday (WSB-TV’s News Chopper 2).
*Firefighters are said to be battling a blaze at filmmaker Tyler Perry’s Atlanta studios, the second fire in the past four months at the complex.
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Video from WSB-TV showed about two-dozen firefighters on the roof of a building at the complex, according to The Hollywood Reporter. There were no reports of any injuries.
On May 1, more than 100 firefighters battled a blaze that ripped through a simulated streetscape at the studios, sending flames about six stories into the sky.
Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin J. Cochran has said the cause of the May fire would be recorded as undetermined. Cochran said the intensity of the May fire consumed any evidence that would lead to a cause of ignition.
Presenter Tyler Perry speaks onstage during the 2012 BET Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on July 1, 2012 in Los Angeles
*Owning your own film studio can be nice, says Tyler Perry.
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“If I had to deal with [another] studio making decisions, or they don’t like this; or if I had to wait for notes or changes, the whole process would grind to a halt and cost ten times more than it does. But, because I make all the decisions, I can turn two shows out in a day,” the entertainment mogul told us during interviews for his latest film “Madea’s Witness Protection.”
“Tyler Perry Studios,” established in 2006, is where he films and produces his various TBS television shows as well as his feature films. With five sound stages, a post-production facility and a back lot on the Southwest Atlanta property, Perry has moved a million miles beyond the simple dream he started out with — which was simply earning enough money to take care of his mother.
*Oprah Winfrey is using Twitter to praising her friend Tyler Perry for keeping his cool after a major fire broke out at his Atlanta, Georgia film studio on Tuesday night.
As previously reported, more than 100 firefighters were called to tackle the blaze at the huge complex, which includes a back lot, a 400-seat theatre, five sound stages and a gym.
Perry has yet to comment on the incident, but Winfrey, who co-executive produced the 2009 film “Precious” with the filmmaker, reveals he managed to remain calm and collected throughout the chaos of the blaze and showed “real grace” while handling the situation.
In a series of tweets sent today, she writes, “my friend and younger big brother @tylerperry; his backlot studio was damaged by fire last night. …His attitude in the midst of it all was calm and feeling blessed no one was injured. Real Grace under fire.”
Investigators have yet to establish the cause of the fire.
*On the heels of extending his first look deal with Lionsgate for another two years, Tyler Perry is about to begin filming “Good Deeds,” a new production for the studio in which he’ll once again work both in front of and behind the cameras, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
In addition to directing and writing the original screenplay, Perry will play the title character, Glen Deeds, in the romantic drama about a successful entrepreneur who’s about to get married when he suddenly finds himself more interested in a down-on-her-luck single mother than his uptown fiance.
The production begins filming at the end of April in Atlanta and is being produced by Tyler Perry Studios and Lionsgate.
Meanwhile, Perry’s latest film for Lionsgate, “Madea’s Big Happy Family,” scheduled to open nationwide April 22.
As previously reported, Perry has also been tapped to play the detective Alex Cross in QED International’s “I, Alex Cross,” based on the novel by James Patterson.