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Tyler Perry: Obama Saved Me From Booze

The Madea's Witness Protection star claims a presidential visit rescued him from alcohol dependence.


Perry and the Pres: Plenty to hug about.
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By Bryan Le


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Sometimes we all need a little help from our friends. But if you're Tyler Perry, that friend is apparently President Barack Obama. After his mother fell ill in 2009, the Madea's Witness Protection director and star took to “drinking every night" to self-medicate and get some sleep. “I never had a problem but I was certainly on the way to having a real one,” he tells Essence magazine. "I'd have me a nice big glass of Hennessy and I would sleep through the night." But that all changed one day soon after his mother died, about four months ago: “It was President Obama's visit to my studio, I don't know what happened there, but when he came everything became clear,” Perry claims. “I just kind of came out of a haze. 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.'” Not even Perry is sure how the president managed it. “I swear the day after he left was the day I just said I am going to sleep without it." Whatever works.

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