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Tyler Perry Dishes On His Favorite Leading Ladies

Tyler Perry says Gabrielle Union is his celebrity crush. 

Tyler Perry has shared the big screen with dozens of leading ladies, but he told ESSENCE that there are a few actresses who hold a special place in his heart.

Our November cover star revealed that he has a celebrity crush: Gabrielle Union. He calls Union, who played his fiancée in the drama Good Deeds, “very sexy.”

The actor and filmmaker also described working with the legendary Cicely Tyson in the upcoming Alex Cross. “I was really excited to have an opportunity to be in the scene with Cecily frickin’ Tyson. Are you kidding me? And not be Madea. Are you kidding me? That was pretty awesome,” he recalls.

Lastly, Perry spoke fondly of Phylicia Rashad — whom he describes as “regal” — because “she looks like my mother… Spitting image.” He continues, “People would always say your mother looks like Clair Huxtable. Before she got sick, they could have been sisters. So, some of the goodbyes [in Good Deeds] are really goodbyes.” Perry lost his beloved mother in December of 2009.

Reporting by Susan Fales-Hill

For more from Tyler Perry, check out the November issue of ESSENCE Magazine, on newsstands now!