AFI Fest Sets ‘Maxine’s Baby: The Tyler Perry Story’ As Centerpiece Film

A new documentary about the prolific multihyphenate Tyler Perry will be AFI Fest’s centerpiece film next month. The American Film Institute said today that Maxine’s Baby: The Tyler Perry Story will make its world premiere October 27 at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood.

The pic from Amazon Studios and Bekele Films is billed as a tender, intimate portrait of the Atlanta-based writer, actor, filmmaker, studio head and media mogul.

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“Tyler Perry is a creative force of nature – a multihyphenate who forged his own path to seismic impact in the world of storytelling while also inspiring the next generation to follow in his footsteps,” AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale said in a statement. “Maxine’s Baby is an epic celebration of a modern maverick.”

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Directed by Gelila Bekele and Armani Ortiz, the doc promises unfettered access to the inner world of Perry, whose story has never fully been told, as he becomes a father and a media mogul with a mission to pave his own road to the top. The film is a profound lesson on remembering where you came from to know where you want to go. Bekele produced the film under her Bekele Films banner alongside Jasmine K. White and Asante White.

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“Working on this film for the past decade has been a life-changing journey for the both of us,” Bekele and Ortiz said in a joint statement. “Getting intimately acquainted with the man behind the icon while witnessing the transformative impact of Mr. Perry’s work within various communities has been truly awe-inspiring,”

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AFI Fest runs October 25-29 and will include a curated selection of special screenings, world cinema, documentaries and shorts. Organizers earlier set the world premiere of Sam Esmail’s Leave the World Behind as the event’s opening-night film and Bradley Cooper’s Venice debutant Maestro as the closer.

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