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Tyler Perry is officially saying goodbye to Madea.
BET+, the streaming service from ViacomCBS’ BET and Tyler Perry Studios, will stream Madea’s Farewell Play starting Aug. 27. The play is the 21st and final one in the Madea series, which helped launch Perry toward becoming the mogul he is today.
“Tyler Perry’s Madea burst onto the scene and entered our hearts over 20 years ago, and we are honored to share this final stage performance with BET+ subscribers,” said BET+ general manager Devin Griffin. “Now, more than ever, is the time to celebrate family and unity and Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Farewell Play does just that.”
Madea has appeared in more than 20 of Perry’s plays, which eventually led to a series of 11 movies that culminated in 2019’s A Madea Family Funeral. “I don’t want to be her age playing her, so it was time to shut it down and move on,” Perry told The Hollywood Reporter at the film’s premiere in February 2019. “I’ve got some other things I want to do, and in this next 50, I’m going to do something different.”
Madea’s Farewell Play also stars Cassi Davis, David Mann, Tamela Mann, Kwaylon Rogers, Alexis Hollins, Anthony Lewis, Jacobi Brown, Ashlee B. Gillum, Walter Fauntleroy, RaVaughn Brown and Kendrick Mays. The performance was filmed during a tour of the play earlier in the year.
The play has Madea driving to a rural Georgia town to be with her family as they celebrate her great-grandson graduating from law school. The family is in need of a happy time after Darlene (Hollins) has gone through a bitter divorce, leaving her financially and emotionally drained. The entire family has pitched in to help Darlene and her son Malik (Jacobi Brown) as he has barely paid his tuition bills. The graduation party is off to a joyous start until Darlene’s ex-husband shows up uninvited. Sparks immediately begin to fly, as Madea begins to fix everyone’s life.
Perry wrote and directed Madea’s Farewell Play and executive produces the filmed version. Michelle Sneed and Mark Swinton exec produce for Tyler Perry Studios.
BET+ is a joint venture between ViacomCBS and Tyler Perry Studios and features two original series from Perry — Ruthless, a spinoff of The Oval that airs on the BET linear network, and Bruh — and is the streaming home of his film, stage and TV productions (minus those he created under a previous deal at Discovery’s OWN). Perry has a multi-year content partnership with ViacomCBS that runs through 2024.
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