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Tyler Perry Is Retiring His Popular Madea Character With A Final Movie

Madea will also get one last stage tour.

An era of comedy is coming to a close. Tyler Perry has announced that after one more movie he will be retiring his iconic character Madea.

Actor and comedian Tyler Perry says it is finally time to hang up his wig and retire his most popular character, Madea.

Before he retires the character for good though Perry is planning a farewell stage tour and one last movie featuring Madea, Tyler Perry's a Madea Family Funeral.

During an interview on Bevy Smith's SiriusXM show, Bevelations, Perry talked about stepping away from the character he has been playing for almost 20 years.

"We're gonna say goodbye in '19," Perry said. It's time for me to kill that old bitch, I'm tired, man. I just don't want to be her age, playing her."

Tyler Perry is saying goodbye to his Madea

But Perry was still grateful for the long-running character who made him a star.

Inspired in part by Pery's mother and Eddie Murphy's character in Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, Madea first appeared on stage almost 20 years ago in Perry's 1999 play, I Can Do Bad All by Myself. Since then Mabel Earlene Simmons, aka Madea has starred in 8 films grossing $502 million worldwide at the box office.

"She's been very good to me," Perry said in an interview with The Advocate last year. "I love the joy that she brings to people. I love to see them laughing and smiling."

Many of Madea's laughing and smiling fans were devastated to hear that Perry would be retiring the character.

Though Madea was hardly loved by all. Despite Madea's many fans the franchise was frequently panned by critics and audiences for its lowbrow humor, and it remained controversial with those who felt the character stereotyped black women. As fans say goodbye, plenty of critics will be happy to see her go.

More than anyone though Perry was familiar with his own controversy, but he rejected the idea that his characters were stereotypes.

"For people to say that they're stereotypes of black people, that's bullshit — it's offensive. These are real versions of us. And every one of us has the right to tell our own story."

And telling those stories is part of what kept Perry doing stage tours as Madea year after year. The other part was connecting with fans.

"Let's face it, there's no need for me to go out there anymore. The only reason is to be in front of them, and to tell them how much I appreciate them, make them laugh, see their faces — and it does a great thing for me and my heart, too. It just gets me reconnected."

Love her or hate her it is hard to underestimate Madea's cultural impact. It's the end of an era and maybe even the critics will start to miss her once she's gone.

H/T - Huffpost, CNN, Vulture