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Listen, it’s no secret that Tyler Perry is a very big deal — but now that he’s the subject of a revealing documentary it’s truly clear just how big of a deal.

Maxine's Baby: The Tyler Perry Story first look image

Source: Courtesy / Amazon Studios

The World Premiere of MAXINE’S BABY: THE TYLER PERRY STORY has been selected as the Centerpiece Screening by The American Film Institute (AFI), a designation that speaks to the significance of the film as a pivotal part of the programming for AFI FEST 2023.

“Tyler Perry is a creative force of nature – a multi-hyphenate who forged his own path to seismic impact in the world of storytelling while also inspiring the next generation to follow in his footsteps,” said Bob Gazzale, AFI President and CEO. “MAXINE’S BABY is an epic celebration of a modern maverick, and it is AFI’s honor to shine a proper light upon Mr. Perry and the film at AFI FEST.”

“We are honored to premiere MAXINE’S BABY at AFI FEST. Working on this film for the past decade has been a life-changing journey for the both of us. Getting intimately acquainted with the man behind the icon while witnessing the transformative impact of Mr. Perry’s work within various communities has been truly awe-inspiring,” said directors Gelila Bekele and Armani Ortiz. “We hope this film is more than a road to success story, but rather, a meditation on healing, unconditional love and an inspiration to audiences.”

As previously announced, the World Premiere of LEAVE THE WORLD BEHIND, written and directed by Sam Esmail (AFI Class of 2004), will open AFI FEST on October 25. Based on the acclaimed novel of the same name by Rumaan Alam, the highly anticipated apocalyptic thriller stars Academy Award® winner Julia Roberts, Academy Award® winner Mahershala Ali, Academy Award® nominee Ethan Hawke, Myha’la, Farrah Mackenzie, Charlie Evans and Kevin Bacon.

Bradley Cooper’s MAESTRO will close AFI FEST 2023 on October 29. MAESTRO is a towering and fearless love story chronicling the lifelong relationship between Leonard Bernstein (Bradley Cooper) and Felicia Montealegre Cohn Bernstein (Carey Mulligan). A love letter to life and art, MAESTRO at its core is an emotionally epic portrayal of family and love. The film reunites Cooper with Oscar®-nominated cinematographer Matthew Libatique (AFI Class of 1992) and is co-written by Cooper and Oscar® winner Josh Singer (SPOTLIGHT). Producing alongside Cooper and AFI Life Achievement Award recipients Martin Scorsese and Steven Spielberg are Fred Berner, Amy Durning and Kristie Macosko Krieger.

The Amazon Studios and Bekele Films documentary, which is a tender, intimate portrait of the writer, actor, filmmaker, studio head and media mogul, will screen on Friday, October 27 at the historic TCL Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles.

Passes to AFI FEST are on sale at Festivalgoers have the opportunity to select either a FEST Pass or a Premium FEST Pass. The Premium FEST Pass includes access to all screenings including Red Carpet Premieres, priority screening selection and theater access, access to the AFI FEST Festival Lounge and Festival Mixer, and AFI FEST merch. The FEST Pass features access to all screenings (excluding Red Carpet Premieres), early screening selection and theater access, access to AFI FEST Festival Lounge and AFI FEST merch. Learn more at


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