Actress Tasha Smith usually plays roles in films and tv shows of characters that don’t hold back, and it seems as though she’s the very same way in real life. You’ve seen her in films like ATL and Dolemite is My Name, and television shows as recent as Empire. Famously she’s been in few Tyler Perry films as well like Why Did I Get Married and the film’s sequel Why Did I Get Married Too. The two frequently collaborate, she shared a few thoughts on Perry in an interview.
Tyler Perry has been moving and shaking in the film and television world for years now, making massive strides. One thing about the writer/director/producer, however, is how private he keeps his private life. For years, many questioned his sexuality, as he has been extremely mum about his romantic life. In a plot twist, however, news broke in 2014 that the “Madea” creator had been not only dating but was expecting his first child.
Perry met his girlfriend, Ethiopian model, and activist Gelila Bekele, after a Prince concert in 2007 and began dating in 2009. In 2014, news broke that the couple was expecting their first child together and shortly thereafter, Bekele gave birth to a baby boy, Aman Tyler, on November 30.
“Tyler is thrilled. He and Gelila are so excited,” a source told PEOPLE at the time. “They’ve got the nursery ready and he’s ready to change diapers.” Another source added, “He will make a wonderful father. You will never find a more loving, patient, honorable, or decent man than Tyler Perry. Any child would be blessed to have him as a father.”
Three years later, he explained to PEOPLE editor-in-chief Jess Cagle in an episode of her show “The Jess Cagle Interview” how he found out that he would be a father. “I get a FaceTime call and she’s holding up the pregnancy stick,” Perry told Cagle. “I’m like, ‘I guess this is happening.’” Perry went on to give a glimpse of what fatherhood was for him. “The whole day is Paw Patrol,” the actor says of the animated Nickelodeon series, of which he will be a voice actor in the upcoming movie. “Paw Patrol. He loves Paw Patrol. He wants to watch Paw Patrol. He’s never seen television, but he watches it on his iPad. We have to take it away, then we go out and do normal things, and then it ends with Paw Patrol.”
While Perry is excited about being a new father, he has no interest in sharing pictures of his child. He himself is already in the spotlight on the regular. He spoke with The Ricky Smiley Morning Show where he continued to share his thoughts on fatherhood while explaining his reasoning for keeping his son private. “Me and mom are here, we’re just enjoying it. Loving every moment of it,” Perry said of raising Aman. “I love waking up in the morning, him come running to me. Those hugs? It’s life-changing. And I know there are no pictures of him, but that’s not something we do. We’re not the kind of parents — my son’s not famous. We’re trying very hard to keep him protected so that he can know who he is before he gets into the crazy bull crap of this social media world.”
Perhaps Perry also didn’t want the comments directed towards him and his family life as well, but that didn’t stop friend and frequent collaborator Tasha Smith from sharing her thoughts. In a resurfaced interview from her appearance on The Wendy Williams Show, while promoting her film Addicted that’s making its rounds, the For Better or Worse actress stated she was shocked when she found out about the pregnancy.
“Stop it, Wendy,” Smith exclaimed to Williams in the clip. “I used to think he was asexual. I didn’t think he had sex at all! No, but seriously stop it, Wendy! No, seriously. He’s like an uncle that never has sex. I was just shocked and I’m so happy for him; he’s going to be a daddy! I used to think that he would just be the uncle-daddy, you know?
Whether or not Perry has anymore children depends on his schedule due to children needing attention, as he stated in a 2019 interview with Extra. “To do this right, you have to make a lot of sacrifices. And I can’t imagine doing all that I’m doing and trying to sacrifice more than I have right now,” he explained. However, he seems to be doing just great raising Aman with his partner, with whom he shared, “There’s no other person on this planet that I would want to be involved with or have a child with because she’s amazing.”