Four years after providing aid to the Bahamas in the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian in 2019, African-American billionaire Tyler Perry recently visited the island to commemorate the nation’s 50th anniversary of independence from the UK.
On Sept. 24, the Office of Prime Minister Philip Davis posted on Facebook: “Earlier this weekend, Tyler Perry paid Prime Minister Philip Davis a courtesy visit to celebrate The Bahamas’ remarkable milestone of 50 years of independence. During their meeting, Perry shared warm congratulations and expressed his admiration for the nation’s achievements. He also highlighted the incredible potential for growth in The Bahamas’ Orange Economy, emphasizing the exciting new opportunities for the creative arts and cultural industries.”
Perry owns a private island in the Bahamas and often refers to himself as the island’s adoptive son. In a conversation with the Bahamian newspaper The Tribune, he expressed his deep connection: “I very much feel like a part of the Bahamian people. If we go back to our history and our culture and how we all got into America and this part of the world, you know, we all have a common bond. So to have a country celebrating 50 years of independence is pretty amazing, especially being people of color who know what it takes to be independent and to make their way through things.”
Perry revealed his plans to integrate the Bahamas into his upcoming business endeavors but stressed the importance of understanding the local culture first. He noted: “Here’s my thought – I write what I know and what I understand. I never want to be insulting to anyone. So until I fully get immersed and understand and spend time with some real downhome Bahamians – and here’s the other part of it, each island is going to have its own different flavor and feel, so until I can understand all of that, I don’t want to insult anybody,” he said.
Perry is the proud owner of White Bay Cay, an island in the Bahamas that has a 14,000-square-foot Bali-styled mansion, a spa, guest bungalows and a marina.
Perry, 54, is best known for his “Madea” franchise, which has grossed more than $660 million. He started in live theater in the 1990s and became extremely popular before transitioning to film and television in the 2000s.
Perry’s $1-billion fortune comes from his cut as a producer and a library dating back to the early 1990s. According to Forbes magazine, he owns 100 percent of the content he’s created.