During an interview with Essence about his latest in the Madea series, Madea's Witness Protection, director-actor Tyler Perry revealed that he was battling a drinking problem that developed after his mother passed away. Trouble sleeping led to a dependency on alcohol, cognac being his sleep aid of choice. He'd drink a big glass of Hennessy just to get through the night.
"I'm doing a lot better now since I stopped drinking about four months ago when my mother died," Tyler said when asked when does he get sleep with all his projects in the works. "When she got sick in 2009 I started drinking every night because I couldn't sleep — every night up to a couple of months ago. I never had a problem but I certainly was on [my] way to having one."
Thankfully, President Obama helped him get back on track when the POTUS visited the director's studio.
"I don't know what happened there, but when he came everything became clear. I just kind of came out of a haze," he recalled. "It was like, 'Wake up, kid. You know life is still going on. I know you miss her, I know you care but wake up. Life is still going on.' I swear the day after he left was the day I just said I am going to sleep without it."
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(Photo: ERIK S. LESSER/EPA /Landov)