David Mann never takes himself too seriously. And he’s aware that he has critics who believe that his over-the-top brand of humor bust their bubbles and not their guts, but that won’t stop him from acting a fool as the zany “Downtown” Leroy Brown of Tyler Perry’s “Meet the Browns.” ESSENCE.com caught up with Madea’s jumpoff to talk about Tyler Perry’s crazy work schedule, what will make him resort to violence and his silent weapon to a happy marriage.
ESSENCE.COM: Hey, Mann! It’s so good to have Mr. Brown back. How’s the climate on the set?
DAVID MANN: Everything’s great. I’m so used to the Tyler Perry pace that what might be grueling for somebody else is normal to the rest of us who have been with Tyler for so long. If I had to sit around and only shoot an episode a week it would drive me a little cooky because I’m used to the everyday grind. I’m always ready to go like, Let’s do it!
ESSENCE.COM: So, has Mr. Brown been behaving himself on and off camera?
DAVID MANN: (Laughs.) What do you think? They just let me roam and play which means most of the time I’m dialed up on ten and when they want me to cut Mr. Brown off; it’s hard to bring him down.
ESSENCE.COM: We hear that Madea might be rubbing off on Mr. Brown, who has a run-in with the law. Why would a law-abiding senior citizen be doing anything illegal?
DAVID MANN: (Laughs.) It’s nutty; Mr. Brown suspects his neighbors of growing marijuana. Now, without giving too much away, he does some investigating himself and somehow begins hallucinating and believes he’s hooked on drugs, so you can just imagine how he carries on.
ESSENCE.COM: (Laughs.) A mess! So we know that your real-life wife Tamala Mann plays you and Madea’s daughter, Cora. Would you say Mr. Brown is more protective of Cora that Mr. Mann is of Tamala?
DAVID MANN: If you mess with Cora, Mr. Brown gets very upset and will go off even though he’s not violent because that’s his baby and he looks out for her.
Now, you mess with my wife? That would take me over the top and I wouldn’t be as nice as Mr. Brown; something definitely would go down after 21 years of marriage.
ESSENCE.COM: You’re our kind of man! After 21 years of marriage, what’s your secret?
DAVID MANN: Well, we never had a wedding and we had been fighting against it, but we’re going to finally have a wedding. My secret to make her happy is, I don’t know what’s going on. I have no input, so all I have to do is show up and say what I’m told to say. I think any man can learn to keep the peace by knowing when to be silent and not ask questions
Tune in to “Meet the Browns” tonight at 10:00 P.M. and 10:30 P.M. EST on TBS.