Terry Crews on ‘The Single Moms Club’ & More
Tyler Perry’s The Single Moms Club follows the lives of five single mothers who, despite coming from extremely varied backgrounds and lifestyles, are suddenly bonded by a common unifying thread—the love for their children. The film stars Nia Long, Perry, Cocoa Brown and Terry Crews. In classic Perry fashion, the film highlights motifs of sisterhood, family and second chances in a dramatic and moving manner while simultaneously making room for lighthearted, laugh out loud comedic moments.
Many of those knee-slapping instances stem from an unorthodox blooming romance between the brilliant dynamic duo that is Lytia (Brown) and Branson (Crews). Crews sat down with JetMag.com for a hilarious discussion on what it was like getting the call from Perry for the role of Branson, what it means to step up as a man and why he courted a single mother (who is now his wife of almost 25 years):
On finally landing a role in a Tyler Perry film…
I had been talking to Tyler Perry for years because I didn’t want to be the only actor who never did a Tyler Perry movie. I was like, “Tyler, come on man, please?” And he’d always be like, “Listen, not now. But I got something.” So what would happen was that I would get jealous whenever I’d see a new Tyler Perry movie poster. It was wild. I was like, “Am I not good enough to do a Tyler Perry movie?” Then finally, he called me. And it just so happened that this was the kind of character that was perfect for me. The good thing about Tyler is that he looks at all of our characters—he knows us, he’s watched us through the years, he knows who I am in a lot of ways—and he saw Branson as me. It was perfect.
On why his character, Branson, goes all out for the affection of single mom Lytia…
Love is one of those things that is really unexplainable. Once you’re hooked, you’re hooked. But with Branson, because he’s so out there, there is no calm. This is a man who has his whole body on the side of his truck. He’s the new narcissist. What’s so lovely about him is that he has a soft spot. He was probably raised by a single mother himself so he sees the beauty in that, he sees the beauty that is in her and he wants that for himself. Branson wants to be a good dad to her kids and he wants to be a good husband to her.
On courting his wife, Rebecca…
My wife was a single mom when I met her and we’re going on 25 years of marriage right now. My oldest child is 27-years-old today, but when my wife and I met, she was only 6 months old. I remember when I met her mom and feeling like I had to have her. But the thing is, when you’re talking about a single mom and kids, you can’t be in and out. So I knew when I made that commitment, it was for life.
Advice to men pursuing single mothers…
Love should be unconditional, but covenant has conditions. Now some people get the two mixed up. I tell guys dating single moms that you can’t even play that live together stuff because a mom has to make sure her family is okay. It has to be true love and true love has those conditions—meaning there’s certain things that you just can’t do or certain things that you are expected to do. And it’s got to be upfront, it’s got to be known and it’s got to be upheld. You can’t be with a single mom without covenant because eventually, if you don’t do it, everybody’s going to get hurt. So you can’t play. And I know guys who try it and it’s so hurtful to watch them play with a family’s heart like that. You see a lot of kids growing up right now who’ve had their mother’s hearts played with and who get a lot of anger from that. It takes a lot to overcome. Let me tell you, you do not want to be the guy who is responsible for that.
Crews also touched on his first book, Manhood, which further explores the concept of what it means to be a man through the lens of past mistakes he’s made. The book is set to be released in May. The Single Moms Club opens everywhere this Friday, March 14.
About Marissa Wallace
Marissa Wallace is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist who delves into the multifaceted and rich fabric of Black arts and culture. Follow her happenings on Twitter @MarsWall_ for more.