Tyler Perry filmed his experience receiving the COVID-19 vaccination for his upcoming BET feature, “COVID-19 Vaccine and the Black Community: A Tyler Perry Special.” For the special, the Emmy Award-winning filmmaker asked medical experts and doctors his questions about the vaccine in hopes to ease public distrust surrounding the vaccine, particularly among the Black community.
On Tuesday, (Jan. 26), Perry appeared on “CBS This Morning” to speak with Gayle King about taking the vaccine and his upcoming special. Perry admitted that he himself was “skeptical” about the vaccine and understood others’ hesitancy, especially with the United States’ horrifying history of testing drugs on African Americans.
“It raises flags for us as African American people, so I understand why there’s a healthy skepticism about the vaccine,” he said to King.
With his own skepticism, Perry set out to have his questions about the vaccine answered by medical experts and doctors. In a sneak peek of the BET special, the actor can be seen speaking with Dr. Kimberly Manning about the importance of taking the vaccine. After having his questions answered, Perry said he felt comfortable enough to receive the vaccination and is now glad he did.
“I’m not taking this vaccine because I want you to take it; I wanna give you the information so you can make your own choices,” he said on CBS. “I think that’s what it’s about: education and information.”
Perry added that his filmmaking staff who worked on the special was also inspired to receive the vaccine after speaking with medical experts.
“Even though it’s 95; 96 percent efficacy, what happens is you’re reducing your chances of ending up in the ICU [from COVID] by 100 percent,” Perry said. “If you take your chance with COVID, you never know how it’s going to affect you and it could affect you long-term.”
Perry added that he hopes the special will help restore confidence and trust in the vaccine, which he says was damaged by Trump and his administration.
“I think this last administration did a lot of damage in eroding trust when it came to the vaccine, but the information I’ve found has been very helpful,” he said.
Perry’s BET special will air this Thursday (Jan. 28) at 9 pm EST. See his interview with King below.