Beyonce cried at the launch of Tyler Perry’s new movie studio in Atlanta, Georgia, as she was overwhelmed by its significance for black entertainers.
Perry opened the studio, which has twelve soundstages, each named after a black actor, and is one of the biggest in the U.S., with a star-studded party attended by the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Halle Berry, Tiffany Haddish and Will Smith on Saturday.
The day after the bash, Beyonce, who went with her husband JAY-Z, revealed she had been in floods of tears at the event, at which Perry paid tribute to pioneering black entertainers.
“Happy Sunday. Congratulations to Tyler Perry on the opening of his studios,” The Lion King star wrote on Instagram. “I could feel our ancestors’ presence. Surrounded by my heroes, I watched Denzel (Washington), Queen Oprah, Spike (Lee), Whoopi (Goldberg), Sir (Sidney) Poitier, Will (Smith), Halle (Berry), Dame Cicely (Tyson) and our angels John Singleton and Diahann Carroll honored.
“The Armand de Brignac (champagne) crashed against each soundstage as fireworks lit up the sky. Generations of blood, sweat and tears, success, excellence and brilliance.
“It makes me so proud, so full, I could not stop crying. Thank you my Virgo brother for so much love and passion put into every detail. My prayer today is that you will take it all in. You inspire me to dream even bigger.”
Perry hopes the studio will become a major filmmaking hub for black creatives, but the evening also featured sombre tributes to pioneering African-American stars of the past, including Carroll, who recently passed away.
Viola Davis, Samuel L. Jackson, Debbie Allen, Phylicia Rashad, David Oyelowo, Ludacris, T.I., Usher, and Ava DuVernay also attended the event.