Covering Cinema From All Across The African Diaspora

Six Degrees Of Tyler Perry

Call me crazy, but I'm doing this based on my theory that Tyler Perry has worked (or is scheduled to work) with at least 90% of black actresses in Hollywood. Granted, the pool of actresses that fall under that umbrella is a small one, since there are very few working black actresses in Hollywood today, or in history even.

Based on this idea, I'm creating a game I call,
Six Degrees of Tyler Perry, of course borrowing from the longstanding Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon game, which originated on college campuses in the early 90s, after Bacon made the famous statement that he'd worked with everybody in Hollywood or someone who's worked with them, and thus could be connected to every Hollywood actor/actress - specifically in 6 steps/connections or less. If you haven't heard of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, read up on it HERE.

I'll go out on a limb, adopting this idea on a micro level, and say that Tyler Perry has worked with enough black actresses in Hollywood that he can be connected to every BLACK actor/actress (male/female) in Hollywood today, in 6 steps/connections or less... the broader statement to all this being that Tyler Perry is essentially the center of the still fledgling black cinema universe in Hollywood today.

Let's test this theory shall we. Right off the top of my head, the first actor that comes to mind is Denzel Washington, one of the biggest names in all of cinema, not just black cinema. Can he be connected to Tyler Perry in 6 steps or less? Well, let's see... Denzel Washington worked with Angela Bassett in
Malcolm X, who worked with Tyler Perry in Meet The Browns.

DONE! In 3 steps.

Next up - how about Will Smith? Will Smith worked with Gabrielle Union in Bad Boys II who worked with Tyler Perry in Daddy's Little Girls.

DONE! Also in 3 steps.

Ok, I'll do one more and you folks can chime in with your own... maybe we'll get stumped eventually. I'll go with another big name - Halle Berry. Halle Berry worked with Spike Lee in Jungle Fever who worked with Denzel Washington in Mo Better Blues who worked with Angela Bassett in Malcolm X who worked with Tyler Perry in Meet The Browns.

DONE! This time in 5 steps, although I probably would have been able to find a faster connection.

Alright, your turn!! I'll keep reposting this, to keep it current, hoping for some participation from you folks. And before anyone mentions it, yes, I know, we could probably play the same game with other names like Spike Lee for example, who's worked with just about everybody. But I'm going with Tyler Perry for starters. We can try someone else later. Also, remember, it's just a game!

Without wasting anymore time - Six Degrees of Tyler Perry. Let the games begin!

Who's got next?


  1. albertine said...

    I got next!

    You picked some easy ones there. But it's your blog so I guess you get a pass Lol.

    I had to think long about this one to see if I could come up with someone who couldn't be connected, but no one came to me right away.

    I tried the UK connection with Chiwetel Ejiofor thinking that would be a tough one to connect, but, it would follow the same path as Halle -- Chiwetel worked with Spike in Inside Man who worked with Denzel Washington in Mo Better Blues who worked with Angela Bassett in Malcolm X who worked with Tyler Perry in Meet The Browns.

    Then I thought about the other UK connection, Sophie Okenedo. But I can connect her in 6 attempts, just by going through the Chiwetel path -- so, Sophie worked with Chiwetel in Dirty Pretty Things who worked with Spike in Inside Man who worked with Denzel Washington in Mo Better Blues who worked with Angela Bassett in Malcolm X who worked with Tyler Perry in Meet The Browns.

    Then I saw your Paula Patton post and I thought she'd be a tough one. But, I can connect her in 4 tries -- Paula worked with Denzel in Deja Vu who worked with Angela Basset in Malcolm X who worked with Tyler Perry in Meet The Browns.

    Ok I'll have to run through my list of black actors and actresses and see if I can come up with a stump.

  2. UK Black Chick aka Wendy said...

    OK, when I read this a few days ago, I couldn't help but think that you were doing the counting wrong...

    So today I checked your link to Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon and yep, your attempts at Denzel and Will and Halle would be 2, 2 and 4 respectively, not 3, 3 and 5.

    Tyler Perry would count as 0, not 1.

    In the Kevin Bacon example as taken from Wikipedia:

    "If the lowest Bacon number of any actor with whom X has appeared in a movie is N, X's Bacon number is N + 1.
    Kevin Bacon himself has a Bacon number of 0.
    Here is an example, using Elvis Presley:

    Elvis Presley was in Change of Habit (1969) with Edward Asner
    Edward Asner was in JFK (1991) with Kevin Bacon
    Therefore Asner has a Bacon number of 1, and Presley (who never appeared in a film with Bacon himself) has a Bacon number of 2."

    So if I decide to give Don Cheadle a try, then, going with Albertine's trail with Sophie Ekonedo, who Don worked with in Hotel Rwanda... THAT's 6 degrees!

    I know, I can be quite the pedant sometimes.


  3. The Obenson Report said...

    - Keep digging for that stump Albertine :o) I haven't found one yet.

    - Yup, you're right Wendy. Actually makes it easier.

  4. Echo said...

    I thought Mario Van Peebles but he connected in 4.

    (1) Mario worked with Nona Gaye in Ali. (2) Nona worked with Ludacris in Crash. (3) Ludacris worked with Taraji P Henson in Hustle and Flow. (4) Taraji is working with Tyler Perry in The Family That Preys Together.

    Does Mario's pops count - Melvin Van Peebles? Because I don't think he can be connected in 6 or less.

  5. Amanda said...

    Here's one you probably never thought of....Melinda Williams, who starred in Soul Food the series with Boris kodjoe, who starred in Tyler Perry's Madea's Family Reunion, and Brown Sugar and Love and Basketball with Sanaa Lathan and Omar Epps. Omar was a key actor in The Wood with Richard T. Jones who also starred in another Tyler Perry film "Why Did I get Married" as a cheating husband who despised his wife and her friends. He had a special hate for Tasha Smith, Angela, who also played the ex-wife of Idris Elba.

    Whew, that was fun! Now that I think about it, maybe he has worked with almost every African American actor/actress. Now I'm all hot and warm inside just thinking about Idris. You ladies have to admit that he was one of the finest brothas on film. It’s too bad he didn’t show up to Toyota’s If Looks Could Kill event I’m working with. I would have LOVED to see him in person. Ever heard of it? IF not, check out the cool webisodes about the next sheroe Bianca to get a better idea. She's got it all! I’m talking the dream job, the man who makes other women drool, and the spice to keep it all together. If you enjoyed playing six degrees of Tyler Perry, then this is definitely something you might be interested in. Log on to, and help Bianca solve her mystery that has suddenly become her life. The best part is there are prizes that can be won each week! Participate for your chance to win a free Ipod Nano, Visa gift car, or even a Toyota Camry. Who can pass that up? The first episode got me hooked so I’ll definitely stay tuned in, especially if these prizes are involved.

    Don’t forget to let me know what you thought of the first episode. I’d love to read the feedback. This is going to be FUN!

  6. Anonymous said...

    Cassi Davis was in Spike Lee's do the right thing, who is on Tyler's House of Payne.

    I have more, to post be back later

  7. Anonymous said...

    OoopS! I meant Cassi Davis was in School Daze. Sorry not do the right thing!

  8. Anonymous said...

    Jamie Fox worked with Regina King in "Ray". Regina King worked with Janet Jackson in "Poetic Justice". Janet Jackson worked with Tyler Perry in "Why Did I Get Married?"

Post a Comment