If impressive ticket sales for "Jumping the Broom" are any indication we might just have a new "Tyler Perry" on our hands---almost. T.D. Jakes' hit film has caught the attention of the big wigs: the Potter's House minister has entered into an agreement with Sony pictures to make more movies starring black people. But this isn't Jakes' first foray into delivering a message through cinema. His first two films, "Woman Thou Art Loosed" (2004) and "Not Easily Broken" (2009) met moderate success.
The feel of "Jumping the Broom" is decidedly more accessible in term of delivery. Thanks for this should probably go to director Salim Akil who helps navigate his cinematic vision. Like movie mogul Tyler Perry, T.D. Jakes hits audiences with a comedic look at real-life drama featuring a star-studded cast. But unlike Madea's creator, he indulges us with a more even-handed approach, trading some of the slapstick antics for more restrained humor. Some may call "Jumping the Broom" an example of fairytale indulgence. But dig past the colorful facade and stellar cast and you will discover a few lessons about jealousy, secrets, and the way we perceive others.
It's easy to draw parallels between T.D. Jakes and Tyler Perry's films. Both directors create movies that speak to female audiences. The black family dynamic is another theme heavily explored by both men. With so few noted black filmmakers in Hollywood, it seems almost silly to compare (and perhaps polarize) the black community's actors and filmmakers. Nonetheless, after seeing the success of T.D. Jakes' brainchild (which was released May 6, 2011), we now wonder whether he could surreptitiously surpass the legendary Tyler Perry as the new "it" guy in black filmmaking.
So what would set him apart from the Madea actor? That T.D. Jakes isn't associated with any particular fictional character is a firm start. But unlike Perry (thus far) Jakes plans on focusing on other topics that Perry has yet to tap into. For example, plans are already in the works for him to co-produce a film called "Heaven is For Real"---a filmed non-fictional account of a little boy's trip to heaven and back. And other projects he'll take on will cross racial and social barriers, effectively making T.D. Jakes' filmography as diverse as other filmmakers. Will these highlights alone catapult the reverend into black Hollywood's glaring spotlight? It's quite possible. There is a substantial void in the cinematic world, one that Jakes plans to fill with movies that celebrate the human condition. "Jumping the Broom" showed audiences that the black community is extremely multi-faceted, proving that there's plenty of room for all progressive black filmmakers to share their vision.
More From This Contributor:
Why Aren't Black Films More Successful?
Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Join the Yahoo! Contributor Network here to start publishing your own articles.
- Salim Akil
- T.D. Jakes
- Tyler Perry
- Sony pictures