By now, Lance Gross should be a recognizable face to anyone familiar with Tyler Perry’s filmography – he plays Calvin on the original series “House of Payne,” as well as Michael in “Meet the Browns” – and while Gross may still be developing his acting career, he has already received accolades for his work, including three back-to-back NAACP Image Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actor on “House of Payne.” So when The Urban Daily had a chance to catch him in the act of promotion – for Magic Shave, no less – he was more than ready for a rap session with the press.
The great thing about Gross is his down-to-earth attitude, even when it comes to his interviews. When asked about his deal with Magic Shave, he simply shares how “it was just a perfect situation” and that “it’s an honor to be the new ambassador” for the hair removal product line. The more interesting thought from the actor, however, was his take on Tyler Perry’s public image when it comes to dark-skinned brothers in his films:
[The Urban Daily:] Tyler Perry movies always catch a lot of criticism about the portrayal of dark-skinned characters. As a dark-skinned man, what do you say to that?
[Lance Gross:] … I like to take roles that are true to myself and my career path. I’m not going to do anything just to do it. It has to be meaningful. It has to have a great message. I don’t knock Tyler Perry at all. Everybody has an opinion about something and I feel like Tyler is looked at through a magnifying glass just because he is so successful at what he does so everybody is going to nitpick about something. I mean if there’s nothing, they’re going to find something.There will always be contention amongst the audience when it comes to the proper portrayal of people from a particular ethnic or ideological group. While fans and detractors alike will always be fickle with ideas they are passionate about, it is important for content producers to recognize criticism from as many angles as possible – especially when that criticism is brought up again and again and again…
So what do you think? Do you agree with Lance in how one-sided the conversation is regarding Tyler Perry’s work, or is he just covering his bases on this one? Have you seen the new movie Temptation, and if so, what’s your score? Let us know in the comments!