How do you feel about Tyler Perry’s influence on Hollywood?
I think it’s amazing what Tyler Perry has done. I applaud the fact that he has taken a small little something and turned it into this huge entity⎯Tyler Perry Studios. It’s great for young women and men who are Black to see that when they’re saying they can’t do something. And not to say that they’re the same types of people, but Tyler Perry President Obama accomplished things that at one time was thought to be impossible. Having these two examples in totally different industries available to us right now gives you hope for the future because you have our parents and their parents telling us and them you can do anything but they didn’t have immediate examples to show us other than athletes. So for Tyler Perry owning his own studio and shooting his projects out of his own studio, that hadn’t been heard of until now, Oprah was the closest thing to that.
Do you ever see yourself in one of his films?
Never say never. The opportunity has never presented itself where that role in his film was right for me or vice versa⎯that he’s seen me as someone that could be in one of his films. I’ve met him and I’ve talked to him and he said one day we’re gonna work together but that perfect situation hasn’t come to be.
What can you share about the rest of this season of The Boondocks?
I don’t even remember them, we recorded two-and-a-half years ago [laughs]. I couldn’t even remember what the first episode was going to be. So it’s like I’m an audience member too, watching it for the first time. It’s gonna be interesting for me to see how I respond to them because I can’t remember them.
Can they get any racier?
It’s going to be very racy. I watched on Sunday saying, “Wow, are we saying nigga more than we used to?” It’s going to continue in the same vein of shocking people. I just hope that in a lot of the episodes, which I think in our second season, we were able to capture⎯but sometimes in a lot of episodes I think it gets lost that people are able to receive the entire message and don’t caught up in the language. The character of Huey is the voice of reason. He’s the only rational character in the whole show. It’s kind of like this show is supposed to be a microcosm of an entire community or an entire society. Huey is the only person who is on the outside looking in to that society and the ridiculousness of a lot of the things we represent or we say we stand for, and how we contradict those things all the time. I hope that it’s not lost when people are watching this final season.
So this is really the end?
I think so, that’s what Aaron [McGruder] says. He’s the creator and I think there’s so much that goes in to making this show. You have to have a lot of someone’s that have thick skin to continue to do Boondocks because it’s a lot of money and a lot of time that goes by between each episode. We’re not doing a cartoon like a South Park where you can do current issues. Aaron has to stick with societal issues because if he dealt with a current event, then by the time the show comes out that’s not gonna be a story anymore. So it goes into how many different spins is he going to be able to put on the same issues, and if he was able to only just deal with the creative side of it then I think the show could have life that goes on and on. But like everything, you also have to deal with the business part of it too. The show is an expensive show. When you look at our cartoon and look at the other cartoons you can just tell with the animation⎯that Japanese anime⎯that’s expensive. There’s a lot that goes into it, so this is probably the end.